I moved to the Edmonton area 11 years this past June. When I first moved here, Edmonton’s population had not reached 1 million. There was lots of farm land still close to the city. Today I was thinking about this and I wished one thing–I wish I would of taken photos of the farmland when I moved here, so I could show my children.
Now, what was once pristine, probably some of the best black soil in Canada, is now under pavement, houses, hotels, and car dealership lots. For those of you familiar with the area, I’m talking about Ellerslie area and south.
What struck even more of a chord with me today, was when I read this article. This farmer, Mr. Koch, is going to have to relocate because the City of Edmonton, after 25 year, finally realized he has sheep on *gasp* non-agriculture zone land! In my mind, it’s a simple fix–rezone his 1+ acres to agriculture–Problem solved! No one has complained about his sheep, and many people enjoy them, the article state.
Unfortunately that’s probably not the way this story is going to end. Mr. Koch is going to probably have to sell his family’s land (which has been in the family since 1960, according to the article) and relocate. While the end use for the land is not going to be a house on 1+ acres; it will be many more homes on those 1+ acres, so the City can tax them and earn more revenue.
Another issue that aggravates me about this, the City of Edmonton is supposedly “going green” and “supporting local.” How can you say you’re “going green” and “supporting local” when you are trying to kick local farmers out of your city? Seems pretty hypocritical, if you ask me.
I don’t know Mr. Koch, but this just seems like another case where a city is bullying someone over something that has been on-going, just so they can have more revenue and in the end farming takes, yet another blow.
I don’t know if the City of Edmonton will even see this post, but if they do, stop being hypocrites and grandfather Mr. Koch’s land.
Mr. Koch, if you see this, from one farmer to another, you have my full support to continue doing what you’re doing! Keep fighting the good fight!!