Fernie's Downtown Junkyard

A Blight on the City Landscape.

April in Fernie. The snow is gone from town, and the weeds haven't sprouted yet. At this time of year the heaps of wood, metal, rubber and plastic, the decrepit vehicles and industrial equipment, the concrete rubble, rebar and construction waste in Fernie's downtown junkyard are clearly visible. But in a few weeks the weeds and scrub brush will be obscuring a lot of the discarded detritus.

This isn't the municipal transfer station, which is a model of waste management compared to this place. The dump in these photos sits between Fernie's historic downtown and the Ridgemont subdivision, within plain view of those million dollar penthouses at 901 Fernie (seen in the image above).

City Zoning Map

The land is adjacent to the railway tracks, between 4th street and 13th street. Half is zoned M1 light industrial, and half is P2 park and open space. The City's zoning bylaw suggests that the purpose of the P2 zone is to identify parks, trails and open spaces, owned by the City of Fernie, Province or Federal Government and intended for the use and enjoyment of the general public and to provide access to facilities and resources. No person shall use or permit the use of any portion of a parcel in the P2 zone for the wrecking and repair of vehicles.

The zoning bylaw says that the purpose of the M1 zone is to provide for a limited range of industrial uses primarily related to recycling and conservation that will have low pollution and minimal interference with residential and tourism uses. Neither the M1 or P2 zoning allows a garbage dump but that's clearly what this area is.

It seems that every year more and more crap is dumped in this downtown refuse heap. It's a wide open junkyard that's easily accessible to children. Nice.

This is park land?

Maybe it's time for a cleanup.

Have a look at the full photo album HERE


Bossio should be hung out to

Bossio should be hung out to dry.!

Clean it up

I agree. So, who should be responsible for leading the clean-up?

Who owns this land? Is it

Who owns this land? Is it City Land?

I agree, this space needs a

I agree, this space needs a lot of TLC! I walk & ride through here regularly and it IS an eyesore. If it's City property, the City needs to take on the task of making it and maintaining it as it's designated zoning... greenspace! Once the big job of cleaning it up is done, and it will be BIG, it will be much easier to maintain and manicure like all the other Parks in town i.e. the Annex, James White etc... How do we get this done?!

Who do I contact?

So, is it the city? Can someone tell me who I should contact?

I think that the P2 land may

I think that the P2 land may be owned by the city, but I don't know who owns the M1 area where most of the garbage has been dumped. I've asked the mayor and city administrator about this situation but haven't heard back from them yet. If anyone else wants to follow up you can get in touch with city representatives here.

If enough people show an interest then something might happen.

Why don't you...

Take it up in a composed manner at a City Council meeting (target questions).

If you simply ask the question "in session" they will have to address the issue and follow-up om it. If it happens to be City land they will explain themselves and remedy the situation, and if it's private land then inquire about any by-law infringements.

Hope to see some better site management in that area, it's beautiful land that deserves better treatment!

This is typical

It's typical that this is a city bylaw that no one (in City Hall) will address until enough people complain about it. It's obvious that the Mayor and Administrator do not want to deal with this as the one person earlier said they had not heard back yet. Taking it to an "in session" forum at a council meeting might light some fires. The bylaw officer would rather be chasing after meanial violators than to help keep our city looking like it should.... beautiful!

In many major centers

In many major centers the city just refuses to make an effort to clean up these areas based on "Budget" restrictions or just points the finger at another company or close by land owner.

In those cases it is not unheard of to see the people of those suburbs gather together and organize a local clean up effort on their own. Looks to me like there are enough people who don't like the way the space looks. Maybe we need to take some action on our own and make a difference.

I agree, we live in a beautiful area. Sometimes it takes more then just angry words and finger pointing to make a difference. Sometimes it takes a proactive effort.

Community Clean-Up

While I'm not willing to organize such a project, I would love to join a clean-up team. Any takers?