A full house is expected Wednesday night for the second time this week as Richmond City Council resumes public hearings on ‘Mega Homes’ on Agricultural Land Reserves.
Monday’s public hearing went on until 1 a.m.
Councillor Carol Day says both sides were heard.
“People who own farmland, many of them are reals estate agents, some of them are farmers. They want to have the freedom to build large houses.”
While others wanted to protect Richmond farmland.
“Real farmers don’t want to pave over their farmland, they are never going to want to pave over potentially thousands of square feet of property because it takes away from production.”
City staff recommended to limit the size of homes on farms to just over 5,000 square feet, but city council agreed to double the limit to nearly 11,000 square feet.
“What they would like is to have the freedom to have it at no minimum then because they feel that they have already compromised by coming down from the 23,000 square foot houses that we have seen built in the past four or five years.”
Day is one of two councillors who oppose mega homes on farmland.
She says with mega homes, it raises the idea of speculation and land has already been sold to many foreigners with a loophole because the 15 per cent buyer’s tax doesn’t apply to farmland.
Depending on the number of speakers, council hopes to vote on it Wednesday night.