The proposed berm is meant to shield the development from road noise. The development is on the left, and the Patricia Bay highway is on the right. (Provided by Marigold Lands Ltd.)

The proposed berm is meant to shield the development from road noise. The development is on the left, and the Patricia Bay highway is on the right. (Provided by Marigold Lands Ltd.)

Digging on Marigold lands to begin soon

The former Marigold nursery has not changed much since the nursery shut its doors in early 2016, but that will soon change. On Sept. 18, Central Saanich council approved a plan by Marigold Lands Ltd., formed by new owners Tim Hackett and Steve Mann, to dig 11,200 cubic metres of soil from the ground for an underground parking garage. The soil won’t be going very far, as it will form a berm along the highway to shield the future 200-home development from road noise.

Mayor Ryan Windsor said the application is routine. If 1,000 cubic metres of dirt or more are removed from Central Saanich, council must approve it. Windsor said a similar berm was constructed on the McTavish Interchange.

“At first it looks like dirt but then grass grew over it and now it’s just part of the park,” said Windsor. “It’d be something similar [here]…it’s a green area that’s slightly raised that’s supposed to be a visual and noise barrier from the highway.”

In an email update forwarded to the Peninsula News Review, Jordan Mann of Marigold Lands Ltd. wrote that existing trees onsite must be removed, but 180 trees will eventually be planted on the development. At the highest point, the berm will be approximately 3.5 metres higher than the highway.

Now that the appropriate permits have been issued and approved by the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure as well as Central Saanich, Mann wrote that crews will begin creating new roads and connecting water pipes, which he hopes will begin “in the coming weeks.”