Information blitz aims to save Linley Valley

A group hoping to save a western portion of Linley Valley from further development is taking its cause public.

A group hoping to save a western portion of Linley Valley from further development is taking its cause public.

Team Save Linley Valley West is hosting an information table Friday to Sunday (Sept. 16-18) at Country Club Centre in hopes of creating public awareness of the more than 80 hectares of wetland, woodland and trails between Rutherford Road and Linley Valley (Cottle Lake) Park.

The group is also using the current development of 24 hectares off of Rutherford Road as an example of what could happen in the future.

“People see the destruction of the forest off of Rutherford and are disgusted,” said team member Joanne Jonas. “There’s nothing we can do about that, so what we’re trying to do is avoid this happening to the rest of the Linley Valley on the west side.”

The property is privately owned, but Jonas said the mindset regarding green space has changed considerably in Nanaimo since the area was first identified for development in the late 1970s.

“There are a lot of areas in Nanaimo that were privately owned that are now parkland,” she said.

The group hopes to save a large portion of the property and create a nature park.

“That’s what we want and we know it’s a lot to ask for,” said Jonas. “If we can’t have that, let’s leave much less of a footprint, have a more sustainable environment and let the people of Nanaimo have a say in what goes on in their wetlands.”

The group’s information blitz includes another information session Oct. 7-9 at Country Club, a Facebook page, and petitions and brochures in stores.

They hope to present city council with 12,000 signatures asking the land be protected.

“We’re aiming high,” said Jonas. “If we have less then we have less, but at least we tried to put our best effort forward. To have a wild park in the middle of a sea of house would be beautiful. It’s totally worth saving.”

For more information, please e-mail Jonas at driftwoodart2003@yahoo.ca or go to Save the Linley Valley West on Facebook.