Resident urges bureaucrats reconsider Revelstoke Airport wetlands access closure

Pursuant to the CSRD plan to eliminate access to the Columbia River Flats adjacent to Revelstoke Airport.

Editor,

Re: Fencing to be installed to block access to Revelstoke airport area wetlands, revelstoketimesreview.com, News, Mar. 28

An open letter to Ms. Cathy Semchuk, CSRD SEP Assistant, ESS Director; Mr. Gary Holte, CSRD Engineering and Environmental Manager; Lonnie Parker, CSRD Area B Director

Pursuant to the CSRD plan to eliminate access to the Columbia River Flats adjacent to Revelstoke Airport. I vigourously disagree with the decision to eliminate public access to the Columbia River flood plain adjacent to the Revelstoke Airport. This apparently arbitrary initiative in no way reflects the wishes of residents adjacent to the airport or the City of Revelstoke.

The frequency with which taxpaying outdoor enthusiasts, naturalists, students, teachers, birders, hikers, runners, skiers, cyclists and their families use this access must be poorly understood by CSRD policy makers and the Airport Committee. While it may seem unnecessary complaining when other access points are available, it seems that other closures are entirely possible. Public engagement and education are rational first steps to avoid any further acrimony. Realizing the need for security of the runway, I would suggest clear signage that indicates stiff fines for anyone or their pets trespassing on the runway or within a reasonable distance to it.

I urge you and your superiors to reconsider this unnecessary and soon to become unpopular restriction. Please consider arranging a public consultation at a suitable location (Revelstoke Flying Club or Revelstoke Recreation Centre) with adequate notice to establish a dialogue with those affected and find a workable solution to this issue.

Sincerely,

Jim Maitre

Revelstoke