November 3, 2017 5:21 pm
Updated: November 3, 2017 6:27 pm

Controversial road through Surrey’s Hawthorne Park back for vote on Monday

Surrey residents rally against proposed road through Hawthorne Park

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Surrey city councillors will vote next week on a controversial proposal to build a road through a popular park on the city’s north side.

The proposed 105 Avenue connector would run from Surrey City Centre to Guildford and cut through the park, school grounds and some homes’ front yards.

LISTEN: Surrey city council to vote on controversial road through Hawthorne Park

READ MORE: No decision from Surrey city council on controversial road through Hawthorne Park

The city said it’s necessary to keep traffic flowing once work begins on Surrey’s proposed light rail system, but some residents say it will damage the park, which is designated as ecologically sensitive.

Councillors voted last month to have staff come back with a new report; that report is now complete, and recommends proceeding with the work.

“The final adoption is to remove the bylaw to protect the park,” said Save Hawthorne Park’s Steven Pettigrew.

READ MORE: Residents near Surrey’s Hawthorne Park upset with road proposal

“And then once that bylaw is removed, then [the city is] recommending that as quickly as possible, this road needs to be built through the park so it can support the LRT construction along 104th (Avenue).”

WATCH: Plans for new road irk Surrey residents

But Pettigrew said residents won’t give up if council greenlights the new road.

“Then the only options left for us is to do civil disobedience. And that’s to basically form a wall of people in front of the tractors, which is absolutely crazy that they’d make us do that,” he said.

READ MORE: Rally held in Surrey to protest plan to build road through Hawthorne Park

Opponents had previously tried to derail the project by collecting enough signatures to block the removal of the construction area from the park.

However, campaigners were only able to collect about a third of the 30,000 signatures needed to force the project back to the drawing board.

The city wants to acquire five acres of land adjacent to the park to offset losses, expand the park’s footprint by one acre and add new trees and amenities.

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