With all the controversy swirling around the Birch Cove Lakes and the facilitator’s report, there has been a lot of talk about maps. Maps from the city; maps from the developers; Maps from the provincial government. It can all get a little confusing. Some are even arguing for a “larger park”, but are referencing the wrong map, which means they are actually asking for a “smaller park” than what’s already contained in the City’s regional plan. So, to help out, here’s a quick breakdown of the various maps for the Birch Cove Lakes.
First of all, a big thank you to everyone who took the time to write City Hall in support of the regional park for the Birch Cove Lakes. The Municipality was inundated with over 1500 written submissions.
If you’ve ever been to the Birch Cove Lakes in Halifax, you know that it is a special place. From the moment you reach the big granite outcrop at Susies Lake, or the panoramic lookoff at Fox Lake, or the amphitheatre-like setting of Charlies Lake, you know instantly the importance of the place.
In Nova Scotia, it’s not uncommon to hear politicians speak fondly of the “Law Amendments” process. This is where members of the public have the opportunity to participate directly in the development of new legislation, in the brief period between Second and Third Reading when a new bill has been introduced into the House. It tends to attract experts who have particular knowledge or first hand experience relevant to the implementation of a Bill under consideration.
To put this all into perspective, more land was protected in Nova Scotia this year than any other year since 1998, when the original 31 protected wilderness areas were created. For the overall number of sites designated by the government within a single year, 2015 is hands-down the winner over any other year, with 88 new protected areas.