On Monday, Surrey city council once again set up its theatre tent at city hall.
The drama’s storyline unfolded similar to previous shows in Clayton Heights, Panorama Ridge and Grandview.
This time, the setting was Fraser Heights, where Surrey city council gave the initial nod to a 49 single-family home development (view map below). This, despite the fact that more than 100 residents, in one way or another, presented their staunch opposition at Monday night’s council meeting.
By the final act, the audience was not in any mood to applaud.
Councillor Judy Villeneuve took centre stage, appearing to be the evening’s protagonist.
Perhaps noticing uncomfortable fidgeting in the crowd, she rose to the occasion and presented a motion for more consultation.
But council denied this plot twist and brought down the curtain. It defeated Villeneuve’s motion and voted to move the plan forward.
For her part, Mayor Linda Hepner stuck to the script. While acknowleding the community’s opposition, she showed no appetite for seeking more input, despite admitting that the city must have “missed something” during previous consultation.
This wasn’t a very good play. You could see the final act coming from a mile away. No payoff, just a tired denouement.
There’s government, and then there’s theatre. There’s listening to the people, and there’s the artifice of going through the motions, much like actors on a stage.
It looks like council had already decided what the final act was going to be before the curtain rose.