This is a post that I’ve started, stopped, edited and rewritten many times over the past few weeks. Prior to going away in August, I was quite good with the blogging. I’d easily push out multiple detailed articles a week. But since I’ve returned, nearly 6 weeks ago now I’ve only published 7 articles and attended fewer meetings.
Why the malaise?
I had to admit that observing the city process and community reaction related to the proposed Bosa Blue Sky Properties rezoning & redevelopment request of the old St. Andrews School site in North Park has really put a damper on my enthusiasm for continuing to function as a city observer (see my Proposal Summary article here). That a seemingly reasonable project proposal and opportunity to bring life into a dead area, regardless of competing arguments for community safety, can be blindly moved forward by Council only to be so thoroughly rejected by a militant group operating under the pretense of a local community is incredibly dispiriting. Continue reading A Decision With Many Implications
As your trusty municipal blogger, I naturally attended the August 27th Public Hearing (City agenda here) for the proposed Bosa Blue Sky redevelopment and rezoning of the long-since closed St Andrews School site on Pandora and Vancouver (also bordered by Mason Street). In total, apparently 48 people spoke and I was told by those who kept count that 26 were opposed to the development and 22 were in favour (video here and written minutes here).
Which is to say that there was representation from both sides but the process is not done yet and nobody seems too sure about whether this proposed project (latest staff report here) will be approved or not. At least 40 more folks are already signed up to speak at the continuation of the Public Hearing when it occurs on the evening of September 17 at Victoria City Hall (new agenda here). Other folks who have not yet signed up to speak are also free to make statements on this proposal.
I will be one of them. I’m sure it will be another long night. Continue reading A Deeper Look at St Andrews School Site
So I learned a lot about plastic bags and the efforts of the Divest Victoria group while attending the lengthy Council meeting on Thursday (video here agenda here). Why was the meeting so long? Well mostly because a total of 17 people signed up for their respective 5 minutes to address Council and all but 3 of these groups were on the topics of banning plastic bags and socially responsible investing, as driven by the Divest Victoria group.
This clip (see below) from the especially verbose Councillor Isitt (maybe because he missed Planning and Land Use meeting earlier in the day) neatly encapsulates the general level of municipal operational professionalism at play on Thursday night. Continue reading July 23 Council Summary & Observations
It was a long meeting with a big agenda. Public business was completed at just after 11pm. Of note is that everything other than one item went as anticipated – 1555 Jubilee was unanimously opposed because new information emerged that was really quite shocking. And as for its origins, I did note in my PLUC summary of 1555 Jubilee that something seemed off between the City Manager and staff when the issue was presented to PLUC.
All and all, very interesting. I will write more about it when I get back from my weekend road trip! Video will be posted here when it gets uploaded.
It was an interesting meeting on Thursday. Because you never know how long these meetings will go for I had a separate appointment booked for 11am yesterday and ended up only getting there right on time (almost missed my bus) because I really wanted to stay and see how the table voted on the Pandora development. So what all went on yesterday?
Here is the agenda for meeting.
Here is the video for the meeting.
Continue reading June 25 PLUC Summary & Observations
If you look just at the number of pages (375) in the Planning and Land Use Committee agenda, you’d think it will be a big meeting tomorrow. But if you actually take a dive into it, you see that there are only 7 items and none of them seem to represent anything major or new. Which is my way of suggesting that I doubt there will be much conversation tomorrow, perhaps because they’ll be conserving their energies for the in-camera update that will be occurring after the public meeting.
It will be a “mediation update” on the Johnson Street Bridge. Continue reading June 25 PLUC Early Thoughts