Mosquito Creek Watershed
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In this area, south of Marine Drive, the stream corridor is very narrow with not much vegetation between the water and the street.
Clear cut
City of North Vancouver Clear-Cuts the Stream Habitat
This habitat area is supposedly protected by the Streamside Protection Bylaws.
It's also a location that the City of North Vancouver pledged to keep as natural green space, to compensate for selling the publicly owned parkland lot just to the south.
Under BC Provincial rules, habitat should not be disturbed while birds are nesting in the spring in summer. These trees and vegetation were removed in late November.


Silence Means Approval
The City declared Mosquito Creek to be a protected Green Zone and an Environmentally Sensitive Area, and pledged to protect salmon habitat.
Streamside Protection Bylaws were adopted.
The City even fined someone for cutting trees on this very same site.
So why is it OK to clear-cut this part of the creek ?
The City declared that no more bridges would be built on the creek after the Low Level Bridge was constructed.
Why another bridge for the City Yard site when it already has access elsewhere?
The City pledged to keep all the land, north of 238 Fell up to Marine Drive, as natural greenspace, to compensate for the loss of the publicly owned parkland lot (on 238 Fell).
At the time, Council was asked to ensure that, but they said "It isn't necessary because we will never do anything to that land."
So why did they clear-cut it and are planning to put a bridge on it?
All the vegetation in that "protected area" was cleared in November because, under provincial rules, the habitat cannot be disturbed during bird nesting season in the spring and summer.
Which proves that there was actual wildlife habitat being used by wildlife on the site, and that the City was aware of that.
So why is this habitat being destroyed when it is supposedly valued and protected?
People think that senior government agencies like Fisheries and Oceans Canada can protect salmon streams, and would block a bridge like this one if it was a problem.
That would be great but - they cannot refuse a bridge if the municipality declares it to be "essential" for access. In this case the City thinks the bridge is essential for the new development on the City Yard site.
The senior agencies can only require the City to minimize the negative impact of a bridge.
All they can do is "approve" the bridge design if it tries to minimize the problems.
This system allows a municipality to say they have "approval" for a bridge, when they actually only have approval for trying to reduce the problems caused by a bridge.
Is this fair - that the municipality can find a way to ignore stream protection?
Why has the City chosen a development project that is harmful to stream habitat?
Actually, they chose to build a housing complex with parking space for 320 vehicles, and believe that more than one access route is needed to accommodate that much traffic flow.
They will keep the existing south access route to the site, and add a second access by building a new bridge over the creek at 3rd and Fell.
If the housing complex (smaller or the same size) was built with space for only half the number of vehicles, then the bridge would not be so "essential".
Part of the City's rationale for putting housing on that site was its close proximity to public transit, with less need for residents to own cars.
What is the point of having Streamside Protection and Environmental Protection Bylaws, Policies, and Guidelines, if the City doesn't follow them?
North Vancouver now has another fine example of "what-not-to-do" to an urban salmon stream.
Is this OK with you?
Comment or voice your opinion in a letter, email, or petition.


Refer to:
Proposed Bridge over Mosquito Creek
3rd Street and Fell Avenue
City of North Vancouver
Mail to:
Mayor and Council, City of North Vancouver
141 West 14th Street, North Vancouver, BC, V7M 1H9
Fax: 604-985-9417
Email to:
Mayor and Council at
You can also email to each of the councillors individually.
Councillor Contact Info
Tell the Media what you think.
Email to:
The Editor, North Shore News
Letter to the Editor, June 18, 2011, North Shore News, KR Milne