Time to close the barn door on illicit mansion cropping in the City of Richmond. The previous Council’s majority was bullish on developing the supposedly protected farmlands in their jurisdiction with Beverly Hills sizes of mansions, doubling to 11,000 the Provincially allowable square footage to build these on protected agricultural lands. Those councillors took advantage of legislative loopholes that allowed municipalities discretion to create larger houses for “farmers”.
You can be sure that none of the McMansions created will ever return to farmer ownership as most are owned offshore in numbered companies and have made their developers and owners tremendous land lifts in this loopholed residential upzoning of supposedly protected Class 1 farmland.
Those councillors responsible for allowing McMansion cropping on the best farmland in Canada should be named-Chak Au, Linda McPhail, Bill McNulty, Alexa Loo, Derek Dang and Ken Johnston. Mr. Johnston and Mr. Dang lost their seats in the October municipal elections when two new councillors that understood the importance of farmland to the future of the region were elected. Kelly Green and Michael Wolfe joined seasoned Councillors Harold Steves and Carol Day and returning Mayor Malcolm Brodie in doing the right thing, and capping the square footage of housing allowed on Richmond agricultural lands.Read more »