Tree protection and other bylaw violations at 2220 Kingsway construction site. Are some developers more equal than others?

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Should billboards, boarding and scaffolding be thrust into trees? It is good practice to have electric wires routed through trees? How effective is Vancouver’s Tree Protection bylaw? Is the policy of “no encroachment” of a tree protection area during construction followed and enforced?

The construction of Westbank’s large development at 2220 Kingsway is underway. As part of the record, we’ve documented the site in the above slideshow. How well has the developer protected street trees around the site?

The Eye on Norquay website has documented a number of serious issues with this rezoning over the past few years. For further details, there’s a post entitled Westbank Contractor Fail and another one called Toxic Soil Remediation Factory (this is located on public land).

Can certain developers in Vancouver just do as they please, without any fear of bylaw enforcement? This pattern may be evident elsewhere. This same firm’s financial partner on many projects violated the permitted use at Carmana Plaza for many years, and not only was not subject to enforcement, but even got rewarded by getting permission to change the use. City officials looked the other way and claimed ignorance.

Would a paraphrase of George Orwell’s Animal Farm explain what we see? “All developers are equal, but some developers are more equal than others.”

Our question: Who is looking after the farm? (It should be our municipal government, on behalf of the public.) Bylaw enforcement is part of the social contract. How is that working out so far?

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