Saanich residents gain support with petition to save Grange Road trees


WATCH: Saanich residents continue their fight to save fifty trees slated to come down to make way for a new sewage pipeline. They presented a petition with nearly 400 signatures to the CRD Wednesday. Luisa Alvarez has the update.

Tall, mature Gary oaks and fir trees line both sides of Grange Road in Saanich, forming a picturesque view.

It’s a view that residents have been fighting hard to save, after finding out thirty to fifty of the trees are set to be cut down.

Their removal is so the CRD can install 19.3 kilometers of sewage pipe that will connect the new waste treatment plant at Mcloughlin Point to the Hartland Landfill.

But when the news broke at a town hall meeting, it left residents stunned.

“I was so astounded, I was so alarmed I said that can’t be. Why would you do that?” asked area resident Irma De la Verde.

Since then, neighbours have wasted no time joining their voices together to be heard.

“Put the pipe in the road, you don’t have to cut the trees down,” said former MLA and Saanich councillor David Cubberley.

Neighbours rallied support from city hall, and after door knocking for three days managed to get 380 signatures for a petition opposing the planned destruction of the trees.

“95 per cent of the households we went to where someone was at home they supported retaining the trees,” said Cubberley.

“The CRD didn’t really bother to do any consultation on this, in fact, they tried to slip it by the community.”

The residents are hopeful their effort has been noticed and their voices heard by the CRD because they are ultimately the ones who decide the fate of the trees.

And those neighbours say, so far it’s looking good.

The CRD says they’re actively reviewing their plans to determine if there are any feasible alternatives.

But not leaving anything to chance, residents met in front of the CRD building and marched inside, petition in hand.

“We see the petition as a consultation with the community and we wanted to share it with the decision makers to help them make quality choices for Grange Road,” said Cubberley.

A decision is expected by the end of the week and residents are optimistic it will go their way.

Luisa AlvarezLuisa Alvarez

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