Part 3 of 3
Over the past two weeks we have introduced Development Permit Areas (DPAs) and how they function in land-use planning. This week, we conclude our three-week series on DPAs with an overview of such areas on Gabriola Island.
Development Permit Areas have been in place on Gabriola since 1998 and have played an important role in shaping how the island looks today. There are nine existing DPAs on Gabriola, which have been designated by the Gabriola Island Local Trust Committee for the purposes of protecting the natural environment, protecting development from hazardous conditions, and establishing guidelines for the form and character of commercial, industrial, and multi-family development. In these areas, landowners must obtain a development permit prior to any subdivision, land alteration, or construction, structural alteration, or addition to buildings and structures on their property.
Areas designated for the protection of the natural environment include, The Tunnel, Lock Bay, Hoggan Lake, the Flat Top Islands and the Gabriola Pass area. These areas represent important marine, aquatic, vegetation, and wildlife areas, not to mention scenic amenities.
Areas with a slope of greater than 80 per cent have been designated for the purpose of protecting development from hazardous conditions. These areas are often unsuitable for development due to erosion, rock falls, and landslides. To maintain the island’s rural character, Development Permit Areas to guide the form and character of development have been established for the Village centre, special needs and seniors’ multi-family developments, and light-industrial use developments.
The Gabriola Island Local Trust Committee plans to establish more Development Permit Areas to protect ecologically sensitive riparian areas and to protect development from steep slope hazards. Please visit the new project website http://gabrioladpas.com, for more information and opportunities to become involved.
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