Drone footage shows extent of tree clearing in Hawthorne Park. (Jeremy Deichen file photo)

Drone footage shows extent of tree clearing in Hawthorne Park. (Jeremy Deichen file photo)

Group launches campaign to protect Surrey parks

Save Surrey Parks targets next council

Save Surrey Parks launched a new campaign Saturday to persuade the next Surrey council to instruct staff to eliminate the “Alternative Approval Process” for removing the dedicated status of parks.

The campaign was launched in Rosemary Heights at 11 a.m.

The Safe Surrey Coalition (SSC) candidates visited Rosemary Heights last week over concerns with a development proposal of 278 townhouses and 23 single-family homes on land located at 3690 and 3660 152 Street.

The 3690 152 St. property is the former site of a Roman Catholic retreat centre that quietly operated for nearly 40 years. The Rosemary Heights Retreat Centre closed its doors in 2015.

In a news release issued Thursday, SSC says its candidates will not allow the proposal to pass, “especially given the sensitive nature of the eco-system.”

According to the Save Surrey Parks news release, eliminating the alternative approval process would protect significant greenspace throughout the city.

Last year, the group delivered a petition, consisting of 12,244 signatures, to the city to stop plans of building a road through Hawthorne Park.

“While that effort failed, citizens have sworn to stop this from happening again,” the release states.

A petition requesting that the city remove the alternative approval process, which as of Sunday morning had 24 signatures, can be found here.

B.C. residents go to the polls for the 2018 general election Oct. 20.