To the Editor
I feel compelled to write and express my serious concern against the proposed Official Plan and zoning bylaw amendments for a condominium development on Peninsula Road on Grass Lake, just outside of Haliburton. The site is predominantly a wetlands! Part of it is even designated as environmentally protected! For many years, our family has watched, with great consternation, as truckload after truckload of fill have been dumped and graded over the upper wetlands and a land bridge built to its island.
Concerns about this have been raised over the years, but the developer was apparently deemed by ‘authorities’ to be legally compliant. This does not negate the fact that the developers’ actions have clearly not been in the spirit of what it means to protect the environment, or enact responsible stewardship. Where was Dysart Council, the Official Plan or municipal bylaws when someone can get away with doing this to Dysart’s most valuable resource – its land, its water, its wildlife and fish habitat?
There is no need for this kind of development so perilously close to a wetlands that is such an integral part of Grass Lake – a little lake that is already over its recreational carrying capacity, according to Dysart’s own Official Plan. Both permanent and seasonal residents alike around the lake and beyond are furious that this proposal could even be entertained for this treasured site. And no wonder, when one can easily imagine a sprawling footprint for 88 units, driveways and parking spread across the site.
It should be a ‘slam dunk’ that Dysart Council ensures these applications are turned down with a unanimous ‘NO!’ In so doing, Council would be setting a laudable precedent, if not its legacy, setting the bar to ensure that development in Haliburton proceeds in concert with the environmental stewardship principles set down in its own Official Plan. Voting against the applications should be a “no-brainer.”