CityHallWatch provides tools for citizens and neighbourhoods to engage with Vancouver City Hall, plus understand and influence decisions affecting them. As a Boxing Week gift to readers, here is an updated list of selected tools on our “Access City Hall” menu. We hope they will be useful for you in 2015, and we welcome suggestions on further additions.
- Access City Hall
- Civic affairs calendar
- Contact Mayor & Council
- Council video (live, archive)
- Election documents, campaign costs
- Six actions to clean up Vancouver politics
- Vancouver Charter: rules of the game
- Council, VSB, Park Board contact info
- FOI (Freedom of Information) queries: Tips
- Write to the media
- Codes of Conduct
- Rezoning defined
- Development Permit Board (DPB)
- Community Amenity Contributions (CACs)
- Doublespeak Guide
- Reading that Yellow Sign
- UDP (Urban Design Panel)
And more from our Access City Hall page: https://cityhallwatch.wordpress.com/city-hall/
Vancouver City Hall is a mysterious place for many citizens. This page and its sub-menus will gather various essays, tips, and information to help any citizen of good will to understand the system and provide constructive input. Comments, suggestions, input, and questions for this page are welcome below.
Vancouver takes public input in various formats, including by Internet through its website, Facebook and Twitter. We list some of the city’s useful web pages below:
- QuickFind Search for City Directory (staff), Inquiries, and Non-City Organizations: http://app.vancouver.ca/qf_net/Default.aspx
The organization chart is also useful if you don’t know the name of a specific person you seek:
- Upcoming City Council meeting agendas, past Council meeting minutes: http://vancouver.ca/your-government/city-council-meetings-and-decisions.aspx
- Watch Council video live (works best in Windows Internet Explorer, not so well in other browsers; Macintosh requires a plug-in):
- The Vancouver Charter (the governing document for City of Vancouver): http://vancouver.ca/your-government/the-vancouver-charter.aspx
- The Procedure Bylaw (rules governing meetings of City Council, Advisory Panels): http://former.vancouver.ca/bylaws/9756c.PDF
- Upcoming Park Board meeting agendas, past meeting meetings: http://vancouver.ca/your-government/regular-park-board-meetings.aspx
- Official press releases or news releases or media releases, advisories, notices:
http://vancouver.ca/news-calendar/news.aspx (from Sept 2012 onward only)
- Archived former City website, for news releases, etc. (before Sept. 2012)
former.vancouver.ca (Search for the word “media” on lower right.) Tip: Many of the pre-Sept 2012 web links will work if you simply type “former.” (with period) before “vancouver” in the web address.
- Have Your Say. “The City of Vancouver wants to hear from you. http://former.vancouver.ca/yoursay.htm
- City Highlights – What’s new in the city? Get the latest City news, announcements, events, open houses, workshops and much more. Click http://vancouver.ca/city-highlights.htm
- Civic agencies and committees: http://vancouver.ca/ctyclerk/civicagencies/civicindex.htm
- Development applications (if you see a big sign about a development application, note the development permit number, and street address, then click here)
- Rezoning applications (if you see a big sign about a development application, note the development permit number, and street address, then click here)
- Fresh news (Planning Updates) on development projects before they reach the Rezoning web pages (see below for more details)
- Bylaws: http://app.vancouver.ca/bylaw_net/
- Mayor’s Task Force on Housing Affordability:
http://vancouver.ca/your-government/mayors-task-force-on-housing-affordability.aspx (final report was in Sept 2012)
- Road closures should be announced here. If not, report to 311.
- Community Services Planning Department “Planning Update” web page http://cfapp.vancouver.ca/planning_wa/ (see below for more detail)
- Job Opportunities at City of Vancouver
- VanMap (web-based GIS / Geographic Information System for Vancouver)
- Open Data Portal (airphotos, maps & other digital data)
- Supply management web page (City of Vancouver) – links to Bidding Procedures, Open Bids, Closed Bids, Notices of Intent, Contracts Awarded, Surplus Sales, Ethical Purchasing Policy, Purchase Order Terms
- BC Bid – e-procurement in British Columbia (searchable by municipality) Access, create, browse and compete on public sector opportunities anytime. http://www.bcbid.gov.bc.ca/
- Office of the Conflict of Interest Commissioner (BC): The Members’ Conflict of Interest Act stipulates that a Member of the Legislative Assembly must not be involved in a decision during the course of public duties with the knowledge that there is an opportunity to further the Member’s private interests.
- Office of the Information & Privacy Commissioner (BC): The Information and Privacy Commissioner is independent from government, and promotes and protects the information and privacy rights of British Columbians.
Besides writing directly to the City, citizens are welcome to send in copies of their comments to us at citizenYVR@gmail.com if you’d like to make them available for the public.
More detail about the Community Services Planning Department “Planning Update” web page http://cfapp.vancouver.ca/planning_wa/
The page shows past and current projects and activities of the City of Vancouver Planning Department. You can refine the search …
- by community,
- by type of project — addition/alteration, change of use, construction/development, parks-buildings/lands/other, planning-major projects, planning programs, policy development, rezoning, roadwork-street/water/sewer/utilities, sidewalk construction, special events, traffic calming, traffic signal installation
- by “sort field” — description, street/location, date completed/posted/started/updated
- by stage of process — in process, or year completed
- by keyword
- by street/location
Contact names and numbers are also provided, as well as location on a map.
We must mention that citizens can search all City bylaws at the following link:
The search works by bylaw number, if known, or by keyword search. When the bylaw is identified, select the appropriate folder and a new window will populate. This window will show the consolidated bylaw as well as any amendments made to a particular bylaw (listed by date).
The City’s information line is good for anyone seeking assistance:
3-1-1 (within Vancouver)
604.873.7000 (outside Vancouver)
Hours are 7 am to 10 pm, 7 days/week, 365 days/year (including holidays). Interpretation services are available in over 170 languages.
The City of Vancouver’s website is http://vancouver.ca
Many webpages were eliminated during the revamping of the website in 2012, but anyone with an old link to a web page, might still be able to find it by inserting the word “former.” (“former” followed by period) before the word “vancouver” in the old web address.