LETTER: Are we setting ourselves up as a sustainable community?

Dear editor,

RE: Courtenay councillor reminisces about sawmill days (Letter, March 6)

It is good to hear a local politician waxing poetic about the days of a vibrant local industry in the Comox Valley. Unfortunately, those days are long gone, and we have now become a bedroom community for the newly minted house-rich refugees of the Lower Mainland.

“Industrial zoning” has become a stigmatized curse word among our local city councils, conjuring visions of mine site tailing ponds and toxic run off; a smart politician would scarcely think to utter the phrase for fear of retribution on election day. Instead they seek to “beautify” and “gentrify” – a frontage tax on industrial lots to get some lipstick on the entrance to Cumberland, or more stringent fencing regulations on yet another mini-storage facility whose existence has become an eyesore in Comox.

This is the industry the politicians want; industry that is free from contentious debate, or firm commitment.

When the baby boomer-driven building bubble busts and they move off to greener golf courses, will we have created a sustainable community with well paying, long-term, and sustainable jobs or will they go bust with it?

As we bid farewell to one of the last waterfront industrial lots in the Comox Valley, we need to have a good hard look at the future. We are a community with a rich history of innovation, hard work and industry. Are we okay with taking more than we contribute?

I’m not.

Brennan Day, Comox

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