Tuesday February 16, 2021 | LANGFORD, BC
by Mary P Brooke, editor | Island Social Trends
Tonight at the February 16 City of Langford Council Meeting, Mayor Stew Young opened the meeting with a significant announcement about a new chunk of greenspace.
This comes at a time when the importance of greenspace and parkland has received renewed appreciation, as time outdoors has become additionally important for people’s health and well-being during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Located in Westhills:
In the coming weeks, the City of Langford will officially receive the 38.5 acres of forestland in west Langford as dedicated by Westhills Land Corporation in accordance with their Master Development Agreement. This land will be protected in perpetuity for residents of Langford.
The dedication of these lands includes a 3.5-acre parcel that connects to the Jordie Lunn Bike Park (now set to open April 1, 2021; previously set to open April 21, 2021) which was announced last year just before the pandemic hit. An additional 35 acres on the east side of West Shore Parkway will feature trail connections in residential areas providing wild open green space for residents to get outside and connect with nature.
This trail connectivity and significant addition of land is in addition to the existing 2,167 acres of park and recreation land within Langford’s municipal boundaries. The City says this aligns with Council’s vision and commitment to protecting green space for residents’ use.
During tonight’s council meeting, Mayor Young thanked city staff and council and the team at Westhills for their support and help.
The burgeoning Westhills planned community (residential, commercial and recreational) was started in 2006, with the goal of a 25-year build-out (which saw some slowdown in construction during the Great Recession around 2008-2010).
“Getting outside for recreational purposes and exercise has never been more important as we navigate these stressful and uncertain times,” says Mayor Young. “Residents will now have another large area of green space for exploration. These lands are perfect for all ages and physical abilities, whether residents want to hike, bike or use these lands for educational reasons, this land will be there for generations to enjoy,” he stated in news release earlier today.
These lands will provide a vast outdoor playground perfect for hiking and mountain biking. In addition to traditional activities, a section of this land has been identified as a potential rock-climbing area, which will be researched further in conjunction with the South Island Climbers Association.
“Parkdale Hill and the Jordie Lunn Bike Park lands will together create over 38 acres of new parkland in Langford,” says Ryan McKenzie, Manager, Westhills Land Corp.
“We are proud to dedicate this land to the City of Langford and continue to work cooperatively with the Mayor, Council and Staff to create diverse recreational amenities. Located near Langford Lake, Irwin Ponds, Mount Wells Regional Park, City Centre Park and the Westhills YMCA, this new parkland will complement the many recreation opportunities offered at Westhills,” said McKenzie in a statement today.
Development of the lands:
Over the coming months, City Staff will develop an extensive trail network and wayfinding plan for the lands.