Time to Give Vancouver Back to its Neighbourhoods and Residents
TEAM’S Colleen Hardwick announces neighbourhood-based planning that repeals Vancouver and Broadway Plans
VANCOUVER, B.C. (October 6, 2022) – Colleen Hardwick, TEAM For A Livable Vancouver Mayoral Candidate and current city councillor, today announced a new neighbourhood-based approach to planning and development that will include repealing the Vancouver and Broadway Plans.
“These autocratic, top-down plans came out of City Hall, and are now being plunked down on residents whether they like it or not,” said Hardwick, whose party believes residents should have a voice in how their neighbourhoods grow and develop.
“The city developed these plans with selected 'stakeholders' rather than actually talking to people who live in the neighbourhoods and know them best. The result will be a concrete jungle of generic neighbourhoods that have lost the qualities that make Vancouver unique, beautiful and livable,” said Hardwick.
She noted the city not only ignored residents in drawing up the Vancouver and Broadway Plans, but also dismissed years of volunteer labour by throwing out the community plans and visions they’d helped create.
Under Hardwick, a TEAM-majority council will withdraw the plans and reconsider them under a new neighbourhood-based system that gives local residents and businesses a meaningful voice.
Each neighbourhood will plan for population growth with a mix of affordable housing options within the scale and context of the area, considering local services, transit, schools, parks and amenities that growth will require.
Those are the kind of issues Hardwick asked residents to think about when she singlehandedly launched her “50 Neighbourhoods” project in 2020, dividing the city into 50 neighbourhoods and visiting each, first in person, then by Zoom, to discuss how and where future growth should occur in each.
Under TEAM, planning will be faster, more practical and more open, said Hardwick. Accurate data on growth, zoning and housing will be made public and easily accessible, an important point for Hardwick, who spent years on council fighting for the data supporting the city’s housing targets. Ultimately, she was told it was not available.
Efficiency will be increased by simplifying permitting processes to reduce costs and approval times. Bottlenecks in the permitting process will be identified, and streamlined, and a One-Stop Renovation Centre will make laneway housing, secondary suites, duplexes and small-scale infill easier to build.
Believing that the greenest housing is what is already built, a TEAM Council will also make it easier to retain and renovate character and heritage buildings, with incentives for retention and an end to the bias toward new construction.