Week in Civic Politics Preview May 11-15: Downtown Post Office & Sinclair Centre rezoning reports, Salt Marsh Project, Commemorative Trees & Shrubs, and more

Post Office DowntownThree meetings of Vancouver City Council are scheduled for May 12th and 13th, 2015. There’s also a Park Board meeting on May 11th and an important Metro Vancouver Board meeting set for Friday, May 15th.

The Park Board meeting on Monday, May 11th will look at a Salt Marsh Project in New Brighton Park. A special event for a concert for the Clean-up the Ocean Initiative is requested in Stanley Park. A Women’s World Cup 2015 report will be reviewed by the Board and a motion on notice for the Commemorative Trees and Shrubs will be introduced. We are pleased to remind people that as of last month, Park Board meetings are now captured on live and archived web video.

The Regular Council meeting on Tuesday, May 12th will include reports on transportation monitoring as well as pedestrian and cycling safety studies. A grant request for extending and upgrading the Adanac Bikeway will be examined. A series of tax levy adjustments are on the agenda; the adjusted taxable value for all class 1 residential properties in the City exceeds $200 billion. Motions on Notice for Protecting Vancouver’s Recreational Water Quality and Increased Protection for Tenants and Vancouver’s Rental Housing Stock will be debated. On Tuesday, a Chauffeur’s Permit Appeal Hearing will be held at 6pm.

The City Finance and Services Committee on Wednesday, May 13th includes a report on the Former Vancouver Post Office at 349 West Georgia. Staff recommend that a minimum of 7.0 FSR of commercial office space be provided on the site, and they also see opportunity for residential condo towers with some heritage retention. Bentall Kennedy, the developer of the Post Office site was a donor to Vision Vancouver in 2011 and 2014.

Sinclair CentreA further rezoning of a the CD-1 site for the Sinclair Centre will also be considered by the City to increase the density and height on the property. The approval of $927,500 in matching grants to 13 Chinese societies for use in building upgrades is to be considered; this item requires 8 affirmative votes.

On Friday, May 15th, Metro Vancouver Board will hold important meetings to discuss the 2014 financial statement for the region, the board will examine reductions in SO2  emissions (sulfur dioxide, from refineries & shipping) and discuss PPP funding to upgrade the Lions Gate Wastewater Treatment Plant. Metro Board will also review an Assessment of the Impacts of the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.

For reference, we’ve reproduced the meeting agendas below. Continue reading

Kits Point Park Board debate. Facts and figures on dog parks. Topics: Vanier Park, Privatization of Parks, Preservation of Greenspace

A well attended Park Board debate was held in Kitsilano on Monday, November 3, 2014.

During the course of this debate, Vision Vancouver Park Board Commissioner Trevor Loke claimed that $20 million was set aside for the creation of dog parks in Vancouver in the upcoming 4-year Capital Plan. NPA Park Board Commissioner John Coupar corrected the record and quoted the figures in the Capital Plan document. The dog park expansion is only a part of a $2.25 million budget item.

The debate was organized by the Kits Point Resident’s Association and Keep Kits Beach Wild. The debate covered a number of issues, including the Bard on the Beach plans for Vanier Park, the privatization of parks (examples include the Boathouse Restaurant on Kits Beach, Cactus Club on English Bay), the preservation of park space and the lack of a Marpole Community Centre line item Capital Plan budget allocation. Further details on the debate to follow, please check back for updates.

Billy Bishop Kitsilano