From the Globe and Mail (Gary Mason), quoting in part:
‘No, there is lots of “supply” in Vancouver and Toronto. That isn’t the issue. It’s who’s getting access to that supply that is a big part of the problem. And it’s also the type of “supply” being built.
Many of the condos being constructed are designed to be purchased by wealthy investors, the Lamborghini crowd. They aren’t being built for a couple of young professionals starting a family. Not unless you consider $1-million for 1,000-square-feet on the 10th floor of a tower in suburban Burnaby, B.C., reasonable. No, somehow, some way, governments need to encourage developers, through incentives or whatever it takes, to start building housing that the middle class can afford.
Right now, developers are getting everything their way. They are putting pressure on local politicians to speed up the approval process so they can erect more towers, more quickly, but they are doing nothing – nothing – about the costs of the units they are constructing. In fact, you could argue they are engaging in activity that is helping ensure the costs keep going up.
Do you wonder what our CNV council members are doing in Victoria at the Union of BC Municipalities annual convention this week?
Program is here: http://www.ubcm.ca/assets/Convention/2016/2016~Documents/UBCM%20Convention%20Pocket%20Program.pdf
and Resolutions to be voted on are here: http://www.ubcm.ca/assets/Resolutions~and~Policy/Resolutions/2016_UBCM_Resolutions.pdf
We (Voices) have received the following copy of an email to Council members and Planning concerning the proposed OCP amendment and development for 1301-1333 Lonsdale. First reading of the bylaw is on the agenda for September 19. The public hearing date has not yet been announced. We also note that a minimum of 117 parking spaces in the vicinity are currently reserved for CNV staff.
Dear Michael and CNV Council,
I have written to you in the past about my concerns regarding the amount of parking that is planned for 1301-1333 Lonsdale – Hollyburn 3.
Today I am providing facts to support my concerns.
There is already a shortage of resident parking for Hollyburn 1 & 2. The parking lots for the two buildings are FULL and there is a waiting list. Given the market-rate rents for Hollyburn 3, the proposed on-site parking for this new building will be insufficient for its residents and visitors. Further, the traffic created by this development will exceed what has been modelled which will cause congestion issues in the lane between City Hall and Hollyburn 3 as well as on 13th and Lonsdale.
- 134 suites
- 74 resident parking spaces in the building
- 50 + an additional 4 parking spaces assigned in the Marlborough/Hollyburn 1 building
- includes 10 Visitor Parking spaces across the street behind the Marlborough
- Disabled Visitor parking is across the street from the Hollyburn 2!
- Disabled residents must park on P1 since the elevator doesn’t go to the lower parking levels.
- All parking spaces are ‘FULL‘ and Hollyburn 1 & 2 has a waiting list.
What is the current parking ratio for every Bridgewater/Hollyburn 2 dwelling unit? (74+54-10)/134= .88 non-visitor parking spaces per dwelling unit. And it’s not enough since there is a waiting list. Where are the additional Bridgewater cars going to park? Also, recall that the current parking ratio for Vista Place (based on ICBC data) is 1.1 registered vehicles per dwelling unit.
The parking ratio for Hollyburn 3 is 0.6 non-visitor parking spaces per dwelling unit AND Hollyburn 3 has more 2 and 3 bedroom units than Hollyburn 2. It’s NOT enough regardless of the amount of bicycle parking provided. Facts show that people who can afford the market-rate rents in the new North Shore buildings are choosing to have at least one car. Families who move into the 2 and 3 bedroom units in Hollyburn 3 will definitely have a car based on the facts for both Vista Place and Hollyburn 2.
The City of North Vancouver is creating a traffic and parking mess for the existing Central Lonsdale residents. Hollyburn 2 is already creating a number of congestion issues on 14th and in the Civic Mews area.
Why not reduce the size/density of Hollyburn 3 to be in line with the OCP so that the residential parking is consistent with what the rental market requires? That’s what your Constituents are asking you to do based an all of the public input.
What’s the point of holding Open Houses, Public Town Hall meetings and Public Hearings if you completely ignore the public input and the facts?
North Vancouver residents are not evolving to use other modes of travel as fast as you might wish.
North Vancouver City Council is taking their summer break, and so are we*. In the meantime, let’s recap where we are after almost 2 years of city business dominated by the Mayor’s slate.
The building boom continues unabated. There seems to be no limit to this Council’s love of high-density high-rise residential development. As we have documented before, the pace of growth in North Van is already far beyond our commitment under the Regional Growth Strategy. Yet Council routinely overrides the limits of our Official Community Plan, using density bonuses and transfers to allow ever larger and taller developments. Next up: 1301 Lonsdale, which goes to public hearing in the fall.
The casino is back. Opposed by most residents and rejected by the independent majority on the previous council, a casino is back on the table. Residents aren’t asking for it, it’s not a needed community amenity, and many concerns have been raised about negative social impacts – but none of that seems to matter to the Slate compared with the expected financial windfall, much of which will come from the pockets of problem gamblers.
Public input has been curtailed. We have appealed to Council more than once on this issue, and been ignored. The right of citizens to speak at Council meetings has been severely curtailed by restrictive new rules.
Livability? What’s that? This Council’s preoccupation with cramming more and more people into our little enclave has not been accompanied by much care for its livability. Traffic gets worse and worse with no sign of relief – not only is there no concrete plan for improved transit, the City has failed to prevent the loss of North Vancouver’s only bus depot. The much-needed rebuild of Harry Jerome recreation centre languishes near the bottom of the priority list.
We know that a great many North Van residents are concerned about these issues. Our humble website has had more than 11,000 views since January. We constantly hear from residents who are frustrated by the sense that the game is rigged and they are not being heard. All we can say is – keep yourself informed. Keep coming out to the public meetings and making your voice heard. Write letters to the NS News, and talk to your neighbours about the issues. Even if the Slate won’t listen, maybe the voting public will.
*we continue to track new applications and will respond to queries. Next Council Meeting will be held on September 12th.