April 2018 events for public input on City affairs – Vancouver

City HallSelected events listed below as of April 4, 2018. To be updated. Open houses on rezoning applications, City council and Public Hearing, Urban Design Panel, Development Permit Board, and more.

The Creek – Building 5 Info Session
April 4, 2018 (Wednesday) at 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Creekside Community Recreation Centre, 1 Athletes Way, Vancouver, BC V5Y 0B1, Canada

Little Mountain Temporary Modular Housing – Open House
April 5, 2018 (Thursday) at 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Immanuel Baptist Church, 109 East 40th Ave, Vancouver

708-796 Renfrew Street Open House
April 5, 2018 (Thursday) at 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Hastings Community Centre, 3096 E Hastings Street
http://rezoning.vancouver.ca/applications/708renfrew/index.htm

2601 East Hastings Street – Open House
April 10, 2018 at 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Hastings Community Centre, 3096 E Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V5K 2A3, Canada
http://rezoning.vancouver.ca/applications/2601ehastings/index.htm

Rezoning Application – 2542-2570 Garden Drive &
2309-2369 East 10th Avenue
Open house Thursday, April 12, 2018 from 5-7pm at the Croatian Cultural Centre, at 3250 Commercial Drive
http://rezoning.vancouver.ca/applications/2542garden/index.htm

Rezoning Application – 815-825 Commercial Drive and 1680 Adanac Street – Open House
Thursday, April 19, 2018 from 5-7 pm at the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre, at 1607 East Hastings Street
http://rezoning.vancouver.ca/applications/825commercial/index.htm

Rezoning Application – 815-825 Commercial Drive & 1680 Adanac Street
5:00 to 8:00 pm on Thursday, April 19, 2018 at the Shaughnessy Heights United Church, 1550 West 33rd Avenue
http://rezoning.vancouver.ca/applications/825commercial/index.htm

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Deadline for input on Granville Island Transportation Study. 8-April-2018 (Sun)

https://cityhallwatch.wordpress.com/2018/03/26/granville-island-transportation-strategy-input-deadline/

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City of Vancouver Development Applications snapshot, 1-Apr-2018

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As a free public service CityHallWatch takes a monthly snapshot of the Development Applications listed on the City of Vancouver website.

A tech-savvy citizen is voluntarily producing two handy online maps (click bottom right to switch between rezoning and development applications): https://vancouverapps-fa328.firebaseapp.com/

Anyone interested in these projects is also encouraged to periodically check the Urban Design Panel (UDP) and Development Permit Board (DPB) schedules, as many projects appear before them as part of the approval pipeline. Check often, as sometimes their agendas appear publicly online as little as one hour before the meeting.

For reference, download the full list of development applications we saved on this date:
CoV Vancouver development applications snapshot 1-Apr-2018

Consider writing Mayor and Council asking them to make Development Applications archives available online. The City website provides a list of archived Rezoning Applications (here), so why not full information on past Development Applications too?

For current (at time of viewing) full list of applications online, click: vancouver.ca/devapps/.

Below is the list as of April 1, 2018

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City of Vancouver, Rezoning Applications snapshot, 1-Apr-2018

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAs a free public service we take a monthly snapshot of the City of Vancouver’s Rezoning Applications listed on the City of Vancouver website. The City does not provide this kind of archived “snapshot” to the public, and as far as we know, a monthly snapshot like this is not available anywhere else.

Open houses and public hearings deserve special attention. They are key chances for the public to obtain information and give feedback. If you have concerns or questions, we encourage you to contact the applicant and/or the City’s project facilitator indicated for each case. If you feel it is important, you might also contact your neighbours, and the media.

This list below is simply copied from the City’s Rezoning Centre website. Download any links that might be important for you. For the current official list, click vancouver.ca/rezapps. Note that the Archives link carries links to past rezonings from 2011 onward (though we are not really sure it is up to date).

Download this list we saved in PDF format:
CoV Vancouver rezoning applications snapshot 1-Apr-2018

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City’s info session to give update on proposed changes to Chinatown development policies: April 3 (Tue) 5:30 pm

ChinatownHere is an announcement from the City of Vancouver, issued the afternoon of 29-March-2018.

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Information session provides updates on proposed changes to Chinatown development policies

The City will host a public information session on proposed changes to development policies and zoning in Chinatown which would help new development fit better with the historic and cultural character of the neighbourhood.

When: Tuesday, April 3, 2018, 5:30-7 pm

Where: Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden
578 Carrall Street

Registration: To register, visit: https://chinatowndevpolicy.eventbrite.com.au

The session will provide an opportunity to learn more about the proposals, ask questions and offer feedback. A presentation will be made in English and Cantonese, and language facilitation will be available throughout the event.

The proposed changes respond directly to issues over the form and pace of new development that the community has raised since the development policies were adopted in 2011, which aimed to maintain the special qualities of Chinatown while helping it to thrive. These changes will be presented at an upcoming City Council meeting and referred for consideration at a public hearing. Continue reading

No parking fees at Spanish Banks this year: Park Board cancels plans to charge for parking there in 2018

Spanish Banks BeachBig news from the Park Board today. The proposal to start charging for parking at Spanish Banks came suddenly, was strongly opposed, and now it looks like it is of the table for now. When first announced, it was a done deal. But it took a lot of quick work by citizens, and some great community leaders, like David Fine (@DavidFineGuy). His petition kick-started a mini-movement. Many people wrote and spoke to the Park Board. Mainstream media played a role in raising public attention to the issue.

Public follow-up is required. Under Mayor Robertson and Vision Vancouver, City Council was attempting to usurp power from the Park Board and has been choking off its funding, resulting in decisions to commercialize the public parks with restaurants and other income-earners. This cash grab from Spanish Banks parking was in that context. A good topic for your list of questions for candidates in the October 2018 civic elections.

Text of the media statement follows. If you appreciate this decision, feel free to contact your Park Board commissioners and say so!

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Park Board will not implement seasonal pay parking at Spanish Banks beaches in 2018 (Media release, 28-March-2018)

After a thorough staff review the Park Board has decided it will not introduce seasonal pay parking at Spanish Banks this summer.

Staff have advised that for this year, the revenue from Spanish Banks parking is not required to balance the budget, so plans for the introduction of pay parking in four Spanish Banks lots are currently on hold.

In addition, Park Board Commissioners raised concerns at the time of approval about the lack of transit alternatives to this more remote beach location. Additional work is required with our transportation partners to find suitable options.

The Park Board will review operational and financial considerations next year and will carefully consider submissions from residents concerned about access and affordability to beaches with limited transit options for families and persons with low incomes. Continue reading

Proposed new B.C. property tax school surcharge: WPGRA letter to premier points out problems, asks for changes

pexels-photo-209224.jpegCityHallWatch has obtained a copy of a letter from the West Point Grey Residents Association to BC Premier John Horgan and their MLA, Attorney General David Eby (download PDF version). Many of the points have immediate and long-term implications province-wide. See full text below. If you are concerned about this topic, you are encouraged to contact your MLA. (Key e-mail contacts – premier@gov.bc.ca ; john.horgan.mla@leg.bc.ca ; Carole.James.mla@leg.bc.ca ; FIN.minister@gov.bc.ca ; david.eby.mla@leg.bc.ca ; andrew.weaver.mla@leg.bc.ca )

Related media:

“NDP demonstrates irresponsibility and incompetence with new taxes”: http://theprovince.com/opinion/columnists/gordon-clark-ndp-demonstrates-irresponsibility-and-incompetence-with-new-taxes

“B.C. Undermines Municipal Tax Base and Affordability”: http://vancouversun.com/ opinion/op-ed/elizabeth- murphy-b-c-undermines- municipal-tax-base-and- affordability

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March 27, 2018

BC Premier John Horgan, Victoria, BC and Honorable David Eby, MLA, Vancouver-Point Grey

Dear Premier Horgan and Mr. Eby,

Re: Proposed BC Property Tax School Surcharge

While we encourage the province to provide increased funding to the public school system, we are strongly opposed to the proposed property tax surcharge that is an encroachment on the municipal tax base and has serious consequences affecting both owners and renters.

The provincial increase in the school portion of the municipal property tax works against the province’s stated objective to make life more affordable for British Columbians, both for owners and renters. This proposal should be withdrawn and replaced with other funding sources that are under the provincial tax base or reconsidered entirely.

Our concerns are as follows:

  • The assessed value of a property has no relationship to an owner’s ability to pay or the equity they may have in the property since it may be highly mortgaged. A large surtax based on assessed value will put many owners in the position of being taxed out of their homes, forced to sell, to raise rents on secondary suites, or to go into debt because they legitimately do not have the income to cover this large increase. Most of the houses that would be affected are old and certainly not luxury. This tax will also put further pressure on demolition of the character houses that are more affordable than new and tend to have more secondary rental suites.

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Milestone: Killarney Community Centre Society Board signs Joint Operating Agreement with Park Board

Killarney Community CentreThe My Community Centres group has issued a media statement today about a major milestone reached last night.

Killarney Community Centre Society signed the Park Board’s Joint Operating Agreement. The statement goes into some of the challenges they and other Vancouver community centre associations have experienced.

This is part of a long saga that goes back years in the debates between community centre associations in Vancouver and the Park Board regarding Joint Operating Agreements. Below is the text of the release. Please visit their website for the whole background and much more info.

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MEDIA RELEASE

Killarney Community Centre Society Board Signs Joint Operating Agreement with Park Board

Full text here: http://mycommunitycentre.com/mcc/kccs-signs-joint-operating-agreement/

March 28, 2018
Vancouver, B.C. – The Killarney Community Centre Society (KCCS) Board has voted to sign the current draft of the Joint Operating Agreement (JOA) put forward by the Park Board.

Ainslie Kwan, Past President of KCCS, said: “While we are relieved that we now have a contract with the Park Board, the KCCS board’s decision to sign this agreement was not an easy one. The gains have come at a heavy price – as community volunteers and to our community. Unfortunately, this is not an agreement that deserves celebration.”

Explained Kwan: “I think it is fair to say – and many CCA board members and presidents involved in this process would agree with me – that we have been let down by our politicians. Commissioners created the process of a New Way Forward, but did not follow through to ensure that it had integrity. The process clearly lacked any ability for CCAs to negotiate and was filled with artificial and meaningless deadlines and an overarching threat of eviction. Commissioners allowed this process to continue, even though they were clearly informed by their constituents that it was not working.” Continue reading