Crowd gathered at City Hall on Tuesday July 26, 2011 before hearing on massive rezonings
Vancouver, July 27, 2011
On the evening of 26 July 2011 at 6:00 pm,, aproximately 150 people from communities across the City of Vancouver gathered on the front steps of city hall to declare that the Vancouver system of planning and rezoning is broken and needs fixing.
Working with Shannon Mews Neighbours’ Association (SMNA), CityHallWatch called Vancouver residents to gather in front of City Hall just ahead of major public hearings on 488 units at 105-167 West 2nd Avenue, and 735 units at 7101-7201 Granville (Shannon Mews). Speakers from a broad range of neighbourhoods explained their concerns and how they are being impacted by unsupported development.
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This event connects straight back to the broken promises made by newly-elected Mayor Gregor Robertson, flanked by many on his Council, speaking to hundreds of neighbourhood representatives at an NSV forum at Heritage Hall on 10 December 2008.
See the following video of December 2008.
In the video, the Mayor credits the NSV network of communities for the strong pushback against EcoDensity that helped Vision Vancouver get its near sweep of City Hall in the 2008 election. Ever since, he and his Vision councillors have used their majority vote repeatedly against community input. The Mayor’s words that day about a “great opportunity right now with the big shift in the political winds to do things differently at City Hall” has cynically translated into the new Council handing even more over to developers than before. Just one example is the STIR program’s huge giveaways to developers.
But now tower and high density developments opposed by local neighbourhoods are being forced onto unhappy residents all over the city – West End, Norquay, Arbutus, Mount Pleasant, Marpole, Cambie Corridor, Little Mountain, False Creek, Chinatown, the Downtown East Side, and Shannon Mews, to name a few. Among their many problems, outsized developments eat away at the ability for Vancouverites to look up at their cherished mountains.
“Little did Vancouverites know that Vision Vancouver would take EcoDensity and put it on steroids. Or that when in 2008 the new Mayor invited the community to City Hall, it meant that time after time citizens would have to drag themselves out there to speak before City Council, to fight unwanted policies, plans, and rezonings.”
– Randy Helten, coordinator of CityHallWatch