Letters to the editor 

This week's letters

Re: "Nebbeling supports Intrawest’s plans for Pemberton airport" (Pique, Aug. 27)

First of all it is not Intrawest's airport, it belongs to the Village of Pemberton, and therefore to the taxpayers of Pemberton, and it is up to the people to decide how the face of the airport will change, if at all.

Anyone who thinks that large jets flying into the Pemberton valley is a good idea has never lived near an airport. I have lived near an airport in an otherwise peaceful marine setting. Whenever a jet was taking off or landing all conversation came to a stop because of the noise. After having cleaned all the glass on the boat, I was appalled when three days later, cleaning the same surfaces, my cleaning cloth was black from jet fuel. Not brown from dust and dirt but black.

I realize that particular airport is much busier than Pemberton's will ever be, but even a small portion of that air and noise pollution, particularly in a tight valley, can't possibly be a positive step forward for Pemberton. Given the shape of our valley everyone will be affected, not just the unfortunate few who live out by the airport.

And what about the destruction of the land surrounding the runway? In order to accommodate large jets the length of the runway will have to be greatly increased. Shall we just destroy our community golf coarse and surrounding waterways so Intrawest can fly more tourists in and bus them back to Whistler?

Of course Nebbeling and the CEOs of Intrawest don't live in Pemberton; i.e it's not in their backyard, so they think it's a great idea. Perhaps they should purchase (and be forced to live in) homes right near the runway.

I'd like to know who invited Intrawest to Pemberton. From a resident's (who would like to keep living in Pemberton for many years to come) point of view they are uninvited and unwanted. Obviously they smelled money and headed on down the highway to find another town to change into $ signs for them. Easy enough to manipulate a small town council with talk of money, increased tax revenue, and all the wonderful things they will bring to this community. But we all know the unaffordable Whistler story. A lot of people are living in Pemberton because they can't afford Whistler. One look at the real estate pages and Pemberton is not far behind. Are we going to be chased out of Pemberton and have this beautiful valley changed beyond recognition so Intrawest can put more dollars in their pockets?

There is always talk of all the jobs that will be created. But will it be just like Whistler with plenty of jobs but no one to fill them cause they can't afford to live here? What is the point of creating a lot of low paying jobs when the average house price will be a million dollars and a "starter" one-bedroom condo a quarter million? But I guess they can just build staff housing up in Birken. I see a vicious cycle being perpetuated.

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