Group organizes for “Bridge-Free Salish Sea”

Submitted Article

Monday, October 27 2014

In response to the provincial government’s decision to fund a feasibility study to determine the potential location and construction costs of a bridge from Vancouver Island to Mudge and Gabriola Islands, a group of concerned islanders has formed to encourage the concept of a bridge-free Salish Sea. 

The group is currently composed of seven people (Daniel Petersen, Leaf Kotasek, April Steele, Sheila Haniszewska, Chris Bowers, Dave Neads and Steve O’Neill) who have committed to working to highlight the beauty and unique qualities of island life and the potential negative social, economic and environmental impacts of a fixed link to Nanaimo. We will be focusing on a number of projects including a letter writing campaign, a formal petition to the legislative assembly, and a blog.

As a collective of people advocating for a bridge-free Salish Sea, we will work to include as many island residents as possible, ensuring a transparent and open strategy with a focus on maintaining not only what we currently have but what we would lose if a bridge is ever built.

We believe that the provincial government reacted far too hastily when responding to a petition from a group of people in favour of a bridge study. 

We see the bridge issue as a symptom of the much bigger problem of the Liberal Government’s failed Coastal Ferries Act. 

However, we know the Union of BC Municipalities and activists in ferry-dependent communities are already doing excellent work on that issue, so while we intend to link to the work which others are doing, our focus will be primarily on keeping our islands bridge free.

Our blog will be available shortly. Anyone interested in working with us can contact Daniel or Leaf 247-0023 or email us at: bridgefreesalishsea@telus.net.