In a short while, if the small business human scale vibe that is Commercial Drive is erased in favour of a homogenized street from anywhere, these are the names you will be able to blame:
The so-called Streamlining Rental report that I have discussed here and here was approved in full last night by all Councillors other than Cllr. Hardwick. It makes a great deal of the Vancouver Plan meaningless by pre-zoning huge areas City-wide.
More immediately for those of us in Grandview — and nothing to do with “streamlining rentals” –, it plants yet another boot in the groin of the Grandview Woodland Community Plan by encouraging greater height and retail spaces more suited to chain stores than local owner-rent-payers. This goes entirely against the Plan’s insistence and promise that:
“Zoning will remain unchanged [on Commercial Drive] … Because of the area’s significance to the community and the strong desire to maintain its low-scale character and form, the plan will ensure that other City policies that may otherwise allow for additional height will not apply.” (p.40)
The Mayor and the nine Councillors who voted for this Motion have obviously decided that promises made to East Vancouver about development hold as much water as their broken promise to keep taxes below 5%. This doesn’t come as much of a surprise.
Let’s make sure we remember at the next election those who voted today to ignore and disrespect the long-considered opinions of the local residents.