Saltair is a unique coastal community with superb natural beauty, nestled between the urban centres of Ladysmith and Chemainus. It is a predominantly rural community with a population of 2221 people (2011 census stats), many of whom moved to Saltair because of the panoramic ocean and mountain views, and rural ambience.
Its location in relation to nearby urban centres, along with its natural coastal beauty, allow for a healthy rural lifestyle, with close access to shopping and services. It is important to recognize that, aside from the forest resource lands to the west of Ladysmith, there are three sub-areas that make up Saltair, which have unique characteristics.:
- North Saltair is the linear landscape north of the Davis Lagoon
- Central Saltair is the semi-urbanized portion of the community from Davis Lagoon to the Boulder Point area
- South Saltair encompasses the rural residential and agricultural areas in the south portion of the Plan area.
- 29,469 Hectares, includes Saltair and Gulf Islands: click on green highlighted text to view; Electoral Area G Zoning Map
Saltair residents place a very high value on the rural ambience of Saltair, and wish to ensure that the peaceful, rural nature of the community is protected. A main challenge for Saltair is that, as increasing numbers of people become attracted to its unique rural lifestyle, the more difficult it becomes to preserve the rural ambience.
Rural lands located adjacent to an urban area are susceptible to sprawl development which can overwhelm the existing community character and way of life.
Furthermore, Saltair relies on limited surface water resources that can sustain only limited population growth. For the purpose of protecting the rural lifestyle, and for sustaining the precious community water supply, the Area G Official Community Plan will provide for limited population growth, and will set clear limits on urban expansion. Click on green highlighted text to view Area G’s Official Community Plan: Electoral Area G Saltair Official Community Plan No. 2500
Throughout the community, the single-family dwelling will continue to be the predominant housing form, and the agrarian heritage of the community will be preserved.
The OCP will also provide for a high level of environmental protection. In particular, Stocking Creek, Porter Creek, Stocking Lake, will be carefully managed to ensure that they are protected from adverse human impacts.
The ocean shoreline area will also be carefully managed to ensure that it is protected from adverse human impacts.
The significant forested lands to the west of the Town of Ladysmith should be retained at existing parcel sizes, as this area is a natural resource of great value. These wilderness lands provide economic benefits through forestry and resource extraction initiatives, the community water supply, and high biotic diversity for wildlife habitat.
The OCP supports a strong park acquisition strategy, and the Plan proposes a network of safe and convenient pedestrian and cycling trails, paths, and walkways to link community facilities, commercial areas, parks, beach accesses, natural areas and residential areas with the community and to connect Saltair with Ladysmith and Chemainus.
The OCP supports a strong recreational component in the community and recommends the continued use of the former Mount Brenton School now the “Saltair Community Centre” located at 3850 South Oyster School Rd.
The existing local commercial area, adjacent to Saltair’s Food Market Store on Chemainus Road, will continue to be the centre of commercial activity in Area G due to its location in relation to the majority of Saltair’s population, and its ability to provide for the small-scale commercial needs of residents.
The OCP will require any future commercial businesses to locate in designated areas in this central commercial core. Any new commercial ventures will be appropriately scaled, with land uses that complement the rural residential nature of the area, are attractively designed, and do not have negative social or environmental impacts.
The OCP also recognizes the contribution of home-based businesses to the economic and social fabric of Saltair. Technological change has enabled many residents to work in their homes while having little or no detrimental social or environmental impacts. Home-based businesses can provide greater lifestyle opportunities, reduce automobile travel, and bolster the local economy. At the same time, policies with the OCP are carefully set out to ensure that, in the future, unsightly or high impact businesses will not be permitted in Saltair.
In essence, the primary focus of the OCP will be to preserve the natural, rural setting of the community. Saltair will continue to be an attractive, livable residential community that has careful regard for the environment, and provides a scenic green belt between the urban centres of Chemainus and Ladysmith. It is incumbent upon landowners to familiarize themselves with the OCP polices and the regulations within the implementing bylaws, to ensure that they are in compliance. To view Electoral Area G Saltair’s Zoning Bylaws click on the green highlighted text: Electoral Area G and Gulf Island Zoning Bylaw
Excerpts from CVRD Electoral Area “G” Saltair Official Community Plan Bylaw 2500
Click on the highlighted text for further information: