Good Scents

July 8, 2014

About half an hour ago I was waiting for a bus at First & Commercial.  The sun was beating down and even with my summer hat, I was feeling as if I might melt into the sidewalk. I noticed that AAA Produce had their awning down and there was a dark cool space where the shadow lay.  I walked over and stood relaxing in the dark coolness.

Suddenly I noticed that I was standing in a pool of delicious, delightful smells coming up and surrounding me from the peaches, nectarines, watermelons, mangos, apricots, apples, pears, melons, pineapples, grapefruit and oranges on display.

Boy, that was a splendid moment.

Why Has The Kettle Gone Off The Boil

July 8, 2014

One of the most egregious problems with last summer’s City of Vancouver’s Emerging Directions document for the Grandview-Woodland Community Plan was the proposal for a 12-15 storey tower at Commercial & Venables.

AstorinosMost residents are strongly opposed to having a high-rise tower so inappropriately positioned in our neighbourhood, especially as there is a dearth of transit for the new residents to use.  In addition, many of us consider the Astorino’s building — site of the horrendous tower — to be of major cultural significance to the Italian community and others.

The proposal first came up at a GWAC meeting way back in February 2012 and was pushed prominently during last summer.  When it became clear in September 2013 that the GW Community Plan was to be delayed for a year, Nancy Keogh of the Kettle was almost in tears, pleading with City Council to allow their project to go forward. It would be a disaster for the agency if there was any delay, she said.  And City Council agreed, allowing them to fast-track the proposal outside the Community Plan.

However, the opposition to the Plan in general and the Boffo building in particular remained high and vocal.  So, suddenly, the developers and the Kettle have decided that urgency is no longer an issue, that they would prefer to wait until after the election in November in the hope that their pals, Vision Vancouver, will sweep back to power and allow Boffo to do whatever they like, regardless of residents’ opinion.

On Twitter, the Kettle’s only supporter for the tower keeps insisting, without any evidence, that my claims about residents’ opposition are untrue.  Fair enough to have that opinion.  However, every time I suggest they put on a public debate to discuss the tower, he disappears and has no answer.  Why?  They know perfectly well that a public meeting would end up criticizing the tower out of existence; and they are scared of that public reaction.  They would much prefer to hide behind Vision’s skirts and keep their fingers crossed that their buddies will see them through.

I call again on Boffo and the Kettle to convene a public meeting to discuss their tower proposal.  If they think it is such a great idea, come sell it to us.