Residents of Vic West and Esquimalt are planning to march across the Selkirk Trestle on Monday (June 24) to voice their opposition to a proposed sewage sludge site near their homes.
Citizens group Viewfield Neighbours is organizing the event to illustrate resident disdain towards the Capital Regional District’s proposal to locate a biosolids processing facility in the Esquimalt industrial park.
Participants will make their way from Vic West Community Centre to a CRD open house at the Burnside Gorge Community Centre at 5:45 p.m.
The $783-million project also includes a wastewater treatment facility at McLoughlin Point. Construction on that project is scheduled to begin in July.
Organizer Justine Semmens said the group believes the CRD should reject any plans to locate a sewage plant in close proximity to residential neighbourhoods.
“The Viewfield site … would directly impact the health, safety, and quality of life of approximately 5,000 residents and business owners,” Semmens said.
A series of eight CRD public engagement forums are scheduled across the Capital Region until June 27 to address public concerns and accept public input.
CRD directors will then decide whether to locate the biosolids facility at Hartland landfill in Saanich or Viewfield Road in Esquimalt.
“It is still not known if there are similar types of facilities in any known residential areas that are working as promised, for example with no fires, odour, loss of property value or other air quality problems,” Semmens said.
CRD representatives at the open house events have promised to address public concerns.
Any changes to the plan, which currently identifies Hartland as the approved biosolids site, will require fresh approval from the provincial government.
Rally participants are invited to make signs at Vic West Community Centre, 521 Craigflower Rd., from 3 p.m. on Sunday (June 23).
To contact the organizer, email firstname.lastname@example.org