Recently I took my dog for a walk around my favourite dog walking area, the trail near the old Coal Creek barn. What is normally a beautiful scenic walk filled with old trees and a quiet peacefulness was instead bombarded with piles of torn up tree roots. Dump trucks had been unloading debris and had actually torn down a beautifully tall tree stump I had come to really enjoy seeing daily. The same can be said when I bike to the Fernie Provincial Park and up areas of Castle Mountain and Fairy Creek.
It breaks my heart to know that an area I’ve spent my life living and loving is being overcome with development. I choose to live here because of the solitude, the ability to go out my front door and find myself in the woods in five minutes. But if access to trails I love means weaving through new subdivisions and vacant lots I’m nowhere near in support of it.
How can destroying our beautiful surroundings with hundreds of new homes be justified if these new subdivisions are vacant for the duration of the year? Can city council truly justify these developments when there are still vacant lots up Canyon Trails and other areas? Maybe there should be a focus on affordable housing and protecting the lands we still have instead of destroying them.
Otherwise, I feel like the fairy in the childhood movie Ferngully. “But how can you live without the trees?” she asks. I don’t know, little fairy. I don’t know.