Even BBC News picked up the absolutely unbelievable story of this “no fun” suburban neighbourhood.
The community of Chemainus (part of the District Municipality of North Cowichan on Vancouver Island) is famous for their internationally acclaimed mural festival which brings art, tourists and income to a former logging town. You would think that a place that brands themselves as an artistic hotbed would translate this creativity to other local endeavours and activities.
But no — the strata council of “Artisan Gardens”, a housing development not far from parks and a golf course, voted 15-4 in favour of a bylaw which basically prohibits any activity a child would do outside of their front door.
The bylaw prohibits using the roadway “for play, including hockey, baseball, basketball, skateboarding, chalk artistry, bicycling or other sports and recreational activities.”
The actual bylaw reads as follows:
Any use of a roadway for any purpose other than access to and from strata lots and, where permitted, for parking is prohibited. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, a roadway may not be used for play, including hockey, baseball, basketball, skateboarding, chalk artistry, bicycling or other sports and recreational activities.”
If you think this was a direct affront for the 11 children residing in this suburban development, you’d be right.
And it is not, as the BBC suggests, about “declaring a war on fun”. It’s really about negating the very essence of what children need to do, which is to have at least one hour of active exercise a day, with three hours of intense activity a week.
The reason for the ban on children being children gets to the root of what’s wrong with the 20th century prioritization of motordom. Since the strata has control of the cul-de-sac which backstops Artisan Gardens, they’re making sure cars have priority, and kids…not so much.
Of course this story has been reported on nationally as well as internationally; you can view the video from CTV’s Your Morning below about “No Fun Town”.