City to undertake more consultation in the West End

Comox tower proposal won’t proceed to public hearing, says Mayor

A proposed STIR rental residential project on Comox Street that has generated concern in the West End will not go forward to public hearing at this time, says Mayor Gregor Robertson, so that the City can work with the neighbourhood to first identify key planning priorities, issues and community needs.

“We’ve heard from the West End community that people are concerned about new development in their neighbourhood,” said Mayor Robertson. “There’s no question we need more rental housing, both in the West End and throughout Vancouver. However, it’s clear that we also need more discussion about how rental housing goals and other critical needs can be met in the West End.

“I’m inviting community leaders to engage with my office in a special advisory process about the West End,” Robertson said, “and I’ve advised the developer it would not be appropriate to move the project forward at this time until further engagement with the community is completed. We want to hear from people about their current priorities.”

Robertson said that Westbank and Petersen Group, who own the site of a now-closed church, have agreed with this approach. Westbank and Petersen Group have a solid track record of accommodating community needs into new developments, including Woodward’s. Westbank President Ian Gillespie said that their organization understands the need to work with the City and the neighbourhood to better understand community priorities.

“We want to keep working with the neighbourhood and the City to develop a proposal that reflects the need for more rental housing and is sensitive to other priority needs in the West End,” said Gillespie.

Mayor Robertson stressed the importance of new rental housing being created in a way that engages the public.

“Our council is committed to getting new housing built,” said the Mayor. “We’ve shown that we’re not afraid to look at creative options, whether it’s the STIR program to get new rental built, laneway housing, secondary suites or modular housing. But we need to do it in a way that also builds trust and public confidence in the way the city consults with neighbourhoods.

“That’s why waiting for more neighbourhood consultation in the West End is the right thing to do. We need to strive for a win-win.”

The Mayor’s West End Advisory Committee, which will be made up of 12 individuals from the West End, is taking applications up until September 10, 2010. It will be charged with gathering an updated list of community priorities. For more information, please visit

Media contact:

Kevin Quinlan
Executive Assistant
Office of the Mayor
City of Vancouver
Office: 604.873.7232
Cell: 778.995.2264

Nurturing children’s health through nature forum

more images of the public forum Continue reading Nurturing children’s health through nature forum →

Images of Beaver Lake Walk, Saturday July 7, 2010


A dialogue on Beaver Lake, Sat. Aug. 7, 10:30 am

Vancouver Pride 2010

images of Pride 2010

Camosun Bog

Plebiscite motion fails at Park Board

At the July 19 Park Board meeting the following motion was put forward for the consideration of the Board:


The following motion was put forward by Commissioner Mackinnon:

WHEREAS at a special board meeting dated November 27, 2006 the Vancouver Park Board passed a motion to review the Parks Control By-Law relating to captive cetaceans in 2015;

AND WHEREAS the residents of Vancouver value the ability to express their views on             relevant issues of the day;

AND WHEREAS a plebiscite is a non binding democratic tool to survey the public sentiment;

THEREFORE be it resolved that a plebiscite be held during the 2011 Vancouver civic election asking the public if they are in favour of ending the containment of cetaceans in Vancouver parks, including the phase out of existing cetacean exhibits which are located on land leased by the Park Board.

The motion failed to gain the majority support on the Board. The majorities position was largely based on the notion that because Vancouver Park Board had entered into a contract with the Aquarium 20o6 for an expansion with  the provision for a review in 2015 to have a plebiscite now would not be in the best interested of the VPB.

Here is Commissioner Loretta Woodcock’s remarks on the motion before the vote which went down 2 to 5.

VPB Hires new General Manager

Parks and recreation veteran named head of Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation

July 19, 2010 – Aaron Jasper, Chair of the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation and City Manager Penny Ballem today announced the appointment of Malcolm Bromley as General Manager, Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation.

The appointment follows a national search undertaken by a sub-committee of the Board and confirmed by the Board.

Malcolm Bromley has over 30 years of experience in parks and recreation management in Ontario, leading high performance teams, delivering quality programs and leading the integration of recreation programs following the amalgamation of several municipalities into the City of Toronto.

Since 2007, Malcolm has served as Director of Community Recreation for the City of Toronto. He has provided strategic leadership for recreation services across the city including aquatics, ski hills, active living, sport development, community programs and customer service.

Over his career, Malcolm has held supervisory and management positions in parks, forestry, and recreation operations in the Ontario cities of Belleville, North York and Toronto. He has also served as a part-time professor at Humber College where he led classes on a range of recreation topics.

Malcolm has a reputation as a strong builder of partnerships with other levels of government, the public, community groups and other key stakeholders.

Malcolm’s skills and experience within large municipalities will be invaluable to the management of Vancouver’s world renowned parks and recreation facilities.

He will begin his new duties in early September.


Media contacts:

Joyce Courtney
Manager, Communications
Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation
City of Vancouver
Corporate Communications

Recent news about St. Paul’s Hospital

The following story appeared in in the Westender, where I am quoted in regard to recent developments about the renewal of St. Paul’s Hospital. The article is reposted here with the permission of the author. Thanks to Jessica Barret.

Savings in saving St. Paul’s?
By Jessica Barrett

Supporters of revitalizing St. Paul’s Hospital at its current Burrard Street site, as opposed to a long-mooted plan to build a new hospital near False Creek, say doing so could present economic benefits beyond eliminating the expense of construction.

In an interview with WE, Brent Granby, president of the West End Residents Association and vice chair of the Save St. Paul’s Coalition, pointed out that St. Paul’s “has an over 100-year social history of being [on Burrard Street].” As a result, he said, other community- and health-oriented groups, including the Dr. Peter Centre, have situated themselves nearby. “There are opportunities for cost savings in terms of partnering with [those] groups.” Continue reading Recent news about St. Paul’s Hospital →

On to Ottawa trek-send PM Harper a message for a national housing program