Three New Commissioners
Three new Commissioners have been appointed by Council: Danielle Bauer of Cygnus Group, Matthew Carter of Great Northern Way Campus, and Michael Henderson of Hughes Condon Marler Architects.
They fill the vacancies left by Commissioners Arno Matis of iConstrux Architecture, Jeff Rotin of Jeffrey Rotin Consulting and Facilitation, and Jiang Zhu of Stantec. All three retiring Commissioners had served the maximum three consecutive terms specified in the by-law. The new Commissioners are appointed for two-year terms ending in December 2014.
New Planning Head for Vancouver
The Commission welcomes the City’s new General Manager of Planning and Development, Brian Jackson, who started in his role at the end of August.
The City’s news release announcing the appointment is here.
Right to Adequate Housing: An Approach for Vancouver?
Why is the rights approach to adequate housing not being adopted in Vancouver?
Miloon Kothari, the former Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing for the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, asked this question at a round-table discussion hosted by the Commission in July. Mr. Kothari provided an overview of Canada’s record in meeting its human rights obligations in the area of adequate housing. The discussion covered a wide range of topics relating to the Vancouver housing context. The notes from the discussion are available here.
Transportation Futures: Mobility and Livability
The Commission has prepared comments on two important transportation planning initiatives that pass significant milestones this month. The two-month public consultation on the draft strategic directions for Transportation Plan 2040 will conclude, and the staff team will present their progress report to Council on new directions and options for the removal of the viaducts. [October 31, 2012: Council approved Transportation Plan 2040. Detailshere.]
Thirteen Perspectives for a new city-wide plan
The Commission has published the perspectives of 13 Vancouver urbanists on the idea of a new city-wide plan for Vancouver.
In July 2011, when Council received a staff report which outlined a concept and process for a new city-wide physical plan, the Commission set out to follow the idea, and invited a number of Vancouver's prominent urban professionals to provide their informed perspectives on this important topic at a very early stage in its development.
Commissioners to Serve Two-year Terms
Council has passed a motion to change the length of Commissioner terms to staggered two-year terms, such that six members are appointed in even years and five members are appointed in odd years. Commissioners will continue to be able to serve up to three successive terms.
This change, made by Council at its regular meeting on December 13, restores the probability of greater continuity of membership on the Commission, enabling the Commission to engage more effectively with issues and initiatives which are complex and long-term in nature.
A New Physical Plan for the City?
It appears that the new Council to be elected in November may consider, early in its term, a proposal from staff for the development of a new city-wide land use and physical plan “for the whole city to provide a clear and resilient framework to guide land use and development decisions.”
A report on the Transportation 2040 Plan presented to Council in September referred to moving ahead with a city-wide planning process in collaboration with Transportation 2040, in order to “enable the City and the public to address land use and transportation issues in tandem and to meet the Transportation 2040 objectives and targets.” This statement echoed earlier comments about a city-wide land use and physical plan made in a July report to Council on the next community plans to be undertaken.
Sustainable City of Sustainable Neighbourhoods: Report
On July 28, the Commission presented the findings of its Sustainable City of Sustainable Neighbourhoods project to the City of Vancouver Council’s Standing Committee on Planning and Environment.
The project began in 2009 as an exploration of how Vancouver can evolve into a sustainable city in ways that meet neighbourhood needs while advancing city-wide goals. Through workshops and meetings with citizens groups, non-profits and development firms, and through research into the City’s sustainability-based policies, numerous themes and concerns were identified. These themes were shaped in collaboration with an advisory group of neighbourhood organizations into a set of questions to be discussed at a symposium of a diverse group of community and neighbourhood organizations.
Bartholomew's Vancouver Plan Goes Digital
A highlight of this year’s 125th anniversary of the City of Vancouver was the digitization of the 1928 Bartholomew Plan for the city. Organized by the Archives and sponsored by Bing Thom Architects, this comprehensive plan that shaped the city is now available in a number of digital formats including a readily searchable version.
New Website for the Commission
The Vancouver City Planning Commission has launched this new website as a source of information about the Commission’s current work and to provide an online site for key documents and report from past initiatives. As the City’s oldest advisory body, the Commission has made significant contributions to Vancouver’s evolution as a city that values livability and sustainability.
At launch, the focus of the website is on the Commission’s current work. Populating the website with historical information and documents will take place gradually. Material from the Commission’s legacy websites from past projects will also be incorporated into this website.