CityHallWatch just turned two years old! Since 2010 we’ve been trying to give Vancouver citizens and neighbourhoods the tools to access City Hall and have a voice in decisions affecting them. It’s been quite a ride. With a budget of zero and completely run on volunteer time and input from many people, we’ve spent a great deal of effort documenting how the present system at City Hall operates, and working on fostering transparency and accountability. City Hall should be the most accessible level of government. If we can’t make things work right here, the world may be a basket case. Conversely, if citizens can make their local government work properly, maybe there is still hope for the world. Our first major story covered the spot rezoning at 1569 West 6th Avenue (recent construction picture below) — the first of many stories that reveal a civic system becoming increasingly top-down and failing to respect neighbourhoods and the grass roots of society. More people are beginning to realize that despite their best efforts they have no influence on the final outcomes of Council decisions. We continued connecting the dots around the Vancouver and the Metro Vancouver region to illustrate that the same patterns appear over and over again. Here’s a brief list of the topics we’ve covered: view protection, the Casino relocation, Little Mountain housing project, Olympic Village finances, Structures for Public Expression on City Streets, a plethora of controversial spot rezonings (Shannon Mews, 1401 Comox, Rize, 955 E. Hastings and many more), Metro Vancouver Regional Growth Strategy, Historic Area Height Review (Chinatown), Norquay Village Plan, Kitsilano shoreline protection, Cambie Corridor, Downtown Eastside developments, community planning processes, political campaign contributions, changes to the Procedures Bylaw affecting public hearings, and Trout Lake… just to name a few. We’ve posted our analysis and reflections on architecture & urban design, and on environmental policy (tankers, pipelines, CO2 emissions, building efficiency). Sometimes, the public is only given a few hours or days to deal to big surprises from City Hall. We’ve done our best to quickly marshal citizens’ wisdom and resources and support citizens to respond as necessary. What is really going on at City Hall today? What does the future hold for Vancouver? More of the same, or a fundamental paradigm shift? Find out, and stay tuned! And please join the CityHallWatch “Future of Vancouver” Community Issues Forum on October 20, 2012. Fasten your seatbelts. The ride is not yet over.
- RT @bobmackin: Why is #Vancouver city hall so secretive about the structural safety of the Burrard Bridge? ow.ly/lnS3P #vanpoli 16 hours ago
- YAY! Media blackout ends. First coverage of Official Development Plan, Regional Context Statement vancouversun.com/business/2035/… #vanpoli #bcpoli 17 hours ago
- Vancouver development plan lacks public input vancouversun.com/business/2035/… #vanpoli #bcpoli Regional Context Statement, Official Development Plan 17 hours ago
- Point Grey Road - Cornwall Avenue Open Houses May 25, 28 -- and Everyone Wins option wp.me/p18o1P-3LM 18 hours ago
- Auditor General for Local Government - Should City of Vancouver be on the list? wp.me/p18o1P-3LH 20 hours ago
- Point Grey Road – Cornwall Avenue Open Houses May 25, 28 — and Everyone Wins option
- Auditor General for Local Government – Should City of Vancouver be on the list?
- Survey deadline today – 30-year Regional Context Statement Official Development Plan
- Should BC’s helmet law be repealed? In Amsterdam, a top-rated cyclist city, helmets are optional
- Mayor announces results of Engaged City Task Force
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