Reproduced below is the full text of the NSV letter submitted to Vancouver City Council concerning the Proposed Amendments to the Downtown Official Development Plan (including changes to West End and DTES Local Area Plans). This policy document will be debated and considered for referral to a Public Hearing at the Council Committee meeting on February 4, 2015 at 9:30 am.
February 3, 2015
Mayor Robertson and Councillors City of Vancouver
453 West 12 Avenue
Vancouver, B.C. V5Y 1V4
Dear Mayor Robertson and Councillors,
Re: Proposed Amendments to the Downtown Official Development Plan (Including changes to West End and DTES Plans)
Neighbourhoods for a Sustainable Vancouver is opposed to referring this report to public hearing as currently proposed.
We support the letter sent from the Community Association of New Yaletown (CANY) as linked here:
The letter from CANY addresses a range of process issues and suggests that the subject report is not ready for referral to public hearing. We agree.
In addition, we suggest the following questions for staff:
– Why is the title of the report only about the DODP when the report is also proposing changes to the West End Community Plan and the DTES Community Plans? The proposed changes and related motivations are unclear and do not provide the public and council with sufficient information to make an informed decision. Are these not the same transparency issues identified in the recent court decision?
– The appearance is that proposed amendments to the DODP seek to greatly increase the amount of bonus density that can be added on social housing or rental projects without requiring a public hearing and only needs approval of the Development Permit Board. This means the replacement housing under development on the developer’s lot could be approved without a public hearing while only the rezoning on the city-owned site would be required independently. Again this is inconsistent with the court ruling that both projects should be considered by the public together as to whether the land swap was in the public interest. Allowing the two projects different approval processes would appear to circumvent the intent of the Supreme Court’s ruling.
The CANY letter raises many additional issues worth considering. We encourage you to send this report back to staff for further work and broad public consultation prior to referral to public hearing.
The Steering Committee
Neighbourhoods for a Sustainable Vancouver
Website: nsvancouver.ca ; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org