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Pemberton offered land for pool or arena



A longtime Sea to Sky businessman and Pemberton resident is offering up a piece of land to the Village of Pemberton.

Art Den Duyf, the owner of Sabre Transport Ltd., penned a letter to council for its July 20 meeting offering a chunk of land that currently forms part of the Sunstone Ridge development being planned for Pemberton's Hillside area.

The letter, signed by Den Duyf and his wife Nellie, offers the Village of Pemberton over 18 acres of land accessed from Farm Road East as a donation for a recreational site.

"A portion of this land could lend itself to a pool or ice arena development and the balance could perhaps accommodate playing fields," he said. "This site is also directly in the centre of the Area C population with Mount Currie to the East and Pemberton Core to the west."

The land currently forms part of what's known as the Sabre/Biro property, which has been incorporated as part of Sunstone Ridge, a commercial and residential development that also includes an international private school to be located near the Hillside.

The Hillside is currently the subject of an application for boundary expansion to the provincial government that could cede governance of the area to the Village of Pemberton, rather than leave it to the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD), which currently administers the property.

Den Duyf is offering 18 acres out of the 30-acre property and he's offering up the land because Pemberton is currently undertaking the expansion application.

"The only stipulation that I would like to place as a covenant on title is that the land is to be used for recreation development for the benefit of all Pemberton, Area C and Mount Currie residents," he said.

Den Duyf attached a letter of support from Mount Currie Chief Leonard Andrew, who agreed the site is a desirable location for recreational use.

"There is a strong community desire for more indoor and outdoor recreational facilities for families and youth," Andrew said in his letter. "These activities will help reduce substance abuse and vandalism in our community. We support a collaborative effort to make this a reality.

"To this end, Lil'wat politically supports the construction of a recreation facility on the Biro lands on Farm Road East."

The letter came at a meeting where Pemberton councillors discussed the future of their application for expansion. They recently received a letter indicating no opposition from Mount Currie when it comes to the Hillside area.

Pemberton is still awaiting feedback from Mount Currie Band Council about three other parcels that are the subject of the boundary expansion, which is the final requirement for satisfying the Lil'wat Nation's request for consultation. The Mount Currie Band was expected to finalize its position on Tuesday evening.

Council was asked to endorse a recommendation to petition B.C.'s Minister of Community and Rural Development to expand the village's boundaries. It did so, with Councillor Susie Gimse opposed. Gimse has always opposed Pemberton's current approach to boundary expansion, which she has previously called a "piecemeal" expansion that only takes in certain areas and not others.



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