Archive for November 2014
The primary concern of Eye on Norquay is to see the best possible planning happen for Norquay in particular (as well as for other individual Vancouver neighborhoods). In consequence, little gets said directly about municipal electoral politics in Vancouver. But experience has shown that politicians and their lockstep administrators determine a great deal of what planners do.
With this circumstance in mind, a tabulation follows, of six ballot selections and recommendations. The views of these individuals and groups have clear and extensive connection to the local community unhappiness that has exploded across Vancouver during the past decade.
In part, this exercise in tabulation results from hearing other unhappy Vancouver residents asking how to vote. This approach meshes with not feeling inclined to express publicly any personal perceptions beyond issuing a call to Break the Bloc. Almost anyone who has spoken to Vancouver City Council in recent years feels dismayed at how done-deal all of the “deliberations” seem to be.
Since 2008, the primary bloc has consisted of a solid Vision Vancouver majority that routinely rams its projects through, with almost no consideration or respect shown to the many persons who attempt to raise valid concerns. Majority status has bred extreme arrogance.
Beyond this party-control situation lies the great similarity between tweedledee Vision Vancouver and tweedledum NPA. Both of these two dominant parties are heavily funded by developers. The overarching and less visible bloc is the Vision Vancouver-NPA axis.
Three technical notes: (1) Some of these slate selections involve concepts of strategic voting and/or plumping. Strategic voting involves guesstimating probable vote counts and then seeking to push likely mid-range candidates upward into the group of ten who are elected. Plumping involves voting for fewer than the total allowed number in order to have more weight attach to the votes used. (2) Although candidates for Park Board and School Board are excluded from this listing, most of the sources identified at the end will lead to that information. (3) NSV bracketed fours — (4) — offer alternatives: any one of three candidates as a tenth choice for Council, either of two candidates for mayor.
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Vancouver City Council
George Affleck / NPA 2 4 5 6 R J Aquino / OneCity 1 3 Gregory Baker / NPA 4 Elizabeth Ball / NPA 4 5 6 Lisa Barrett / COPE 1 2 3 4 5 Cleta Brown / Green 1 2 3 4 5 Adriane Carr / Green 1 2 3 4 5 6 Glen Chernen / Cedar 3 Nicholas Chernen / Cedar 2 3 (4) 6 Heather Deal / Vision 2 Melissa DeGenova / NPA 6 Pete Fry / Green 1 2 3 4 5 6 Gayle Gavin / COPE 2 4 Keith Higgins / COPE (4) Tim Louis / COPE 3 4 5 6 Ken Low / NPA 2 6 Rob McDowell / NPA 2 3 6 Ian Robertson / NPA 3 (4) 5 6
Kirk LaPointe / NPA 1 2 3 (4) 6 Meena Wong / COPE (4) 5
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1 — Larry Benge
2 — A Better City
4 — NSV – Neighbourhoods for a Sustainable Vancouver
5 — TEAM
6 — Ray Tomlin / VanRamblings
Comment on Development Application DE417887 under RM-7 Zoning
3 November 2014
We believe that this application should NOT be approved in its present form for the following reasons:
1. The four upper units are too narrow. The zoning regulations specify that living areas (e.g. living rooms) in RM-7 should be 14 ft. wide. The living rooms in these units are 13 ft. wide. This substandard width is only achieved by staggering the walls and placing the living rooms of units 4 and 5 at the back of the building. This is not acceptable. It should not be difficult to reconfigure the units on this corner lot so that the design meets city regulations.
2. The design of the building lacks coherence. The front of the building is very busy. But our main concern is the north side of the building fronting on 34th Avenue. The design of this side of the building has not been well thought through. Its cumulative effect is to make the building appear even more massive.
(a) The basement level includes entrances to the two basement units and echoes the busy design of the front of the building.
(b) The design of the main floor and the floor above creates large areas of blank wall. The dividing line between the wood siding and the stucco finishes seems haphazard. The windows on the main floor do not match each other or any other windows in the rest of the building.
(c) The sloped roof on the smaller top floor has two different pitches. The 12/12 pitch of the roof at the front of the building should be carried through to the back.
These comments are of course equally true of the south side of the building. Design considerations are less important there because the neighbouring house is very close. Most people viewing the building will be seeing it from high-traffic E. 34th Avenue or from the higher buildings projected by the Norquay Plan on nearby Kingsway and in the transition zone immediately north of this site.
We are pleased to see that four of the six units in this project are larger than the prescribed 1200 sq. ft. for a typical unit in the RM-7 zone.
Please address these salient design failures before approving this application.
Jeanette Jones and Joseph Jones