Discussion getting out of hand

Staff writer
February 21, 2014 01:00 AM


Having read much in the local papers about 'bullies' using threatening behaviour tothose businesses who support the George Hotel I am mystified as to who they can be.

The most vocal people I have encountered are those who support The George, and who have turned up at council meetings in large numbers wearing George Hotel support buttons. A large window sign declaring support may not be bullying, but it is very aggressive and 'in your face.'

If the situation is getting out of hand it is because of the way the hotel has been pushed onto the community as a fait-accompli from the outset.

The original public relations event was staged at Gibsons Elementary School in September 2012, where the developer had arranged a slick presentation aimed at a select audience and anyone who attended to voice their objections didn't stand a chance to be heard - and there has been no let-up since.

While council gives lip service to questions regarding the suitability of the building to its proposed site, the most shocking fact is that even as the official community plan (OCP) and the Harbour study were evolving, from its inception The George Hotel was blatantly presented as oversized and over-height, and that is where council had an opportunity to refuse to consider it unless its mass was reduced.

Unfortunately, George supporters do not care that the developer has aggressively thumbed his nose at the recommendations drawn up in the OCP, nor do he or they care that it far exceeds the maximum allowable height, and unless some reduction occurs it will forever ruin the village character and scale of Lower Gibsons.

No wonder it is tearing the community apart - and council is adding to the anger by tacitly giving the developer a free reign.

Ray Eagle


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