Pink protest: B.C. developer uses paint to decry 'out of control' bureaucracy
Published Friday, October 13, 2017 10:31AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, October 13, 2017 1:03PM EDT
A frustrated developer in Fort Langley, B.C. is using pink paint -- and a flamboyance of plastic flamingos -- to protest bureaucratic hurdles facing a proposed development in the historic town.
“We’re not trying to play games or be silly,” developer Eric Woodward told CTV Vancouver on Thursday. “We're trying to highlight that at the moment, the bureaucracy of the Township of Langley is really a bit out of control.”
Last week, Woodward had a white, boarded-up home that he had purchased 12 years ago transformed into a pink-painted, flamingo-bedecked eyesore. Woodward wants to turn the property into a three-storey mixed-use development that would include retail space, residences and a boutique hotel. But according to Woodward, after applying for the necessary permits, the local government decided to charge him thousands of dollars for permits and tree protection. Woodward says that the town is also refusing to let him demolish the aging house, which dates from the 1930s, as well as other unused buildings on the lot.
“I don’t understand why we face these roadblocks,” he said.
Speaking with CTV Vancouver, Langley Township Mayor Jack Froese said that while all developers must meet certain requirements, overall he likes the project and thinks it will move forward. The matter, however, has yet to go before the township’s council.
In an email to CTVNews.ca, a Township of Langley spokesperson added that because the property is located in a designated “Heritage Conservation Area,” alterations to its buildings and structures can only be made with a “Heritage Alternation Permit” from the township’s council -- hence the delays.
Fort Langley residents who spoke to CTV Vancouver were also split on the developer’s plan, with some saying that the hotel would be a welcome addition to the town while others complained that a modern structure wouldn’t properly fit into the heritage village, which sits adjacent to the Fort Langley National Historic Site, a 19th century fur trading post.
With a report from CTV Vancouver’s Breanna Karstens-Smith