The courts have ruled in favour of the Comox Valley Regional District on a petition filed by 3L Developments, a Nanaimo-based developer which had hoped to build homes on its property around Stotan Falls.
Last October, the CVRD board approved a staff recommendation to deny the company’s application to amend the Regional Growth Strategy in order to create a new settlement node. 3L has since closed access to its property because of liability concerns. The property includes hundreds of acres along the Puntledge and Browns rivers.
In a Tuesday news release, the CVRD says consideration of 3L’s application to amend the RGS “was conducted in a fair and balanced way – in good faith and without malice – according to a decision by the BC Supreme Court released Aug. 12.”
The ruling dismissed 13 claims made against the district regarding the management of 3L’s application for its proposed Riverwood development in Area C. Costs were awarded to the CVRD.
“We were clear from the beginning of this process that the proposal by 3L Developments would be considered in a fair, open and transparent process, and this validates that commitment,” said CVRD CAO Russell Dyson. “The CVRD respects the time, dedication and thought that was placed by the courts throughout the process.”
The court’s decision is especially important to the district because it protects the board’s process for considering an application, obtaining public feedback and decision-making.
“We heard clearly through this process strong community interest in protecting the RGS, and we remain committed to our responsibility to it in order to ensure the long-term health of our community,” Dyson said.
On two previous occasions, 3L won court decisions after challenging the CVRD about due process.
The RGS is a strategic plan that aims to establish a sustainable pattern of population growth and development in the region over a 20-year period.
Calls for comment to 3L Developments were not returned by press time.