Letter to Council (June 9): Referral to Public Hearing on CD-1 Amendment: 2538 Birch Street (formerly 1296 West Broadway – Denny’s site)

On June 5, 2020, CVN sent the following letter to Vancouver Mayor and Council.

City of Vancouver Council
Dear Mayor Kennedy Stewart and Councillors,

Re: Referral to Public Hearing -1. CD-1 Amendment: 2538 Birch Street (formerly 1296 West Broadway – Denny’s site)
June 9 Council Agenda: https://council.vancouver.ca/20200609/regu20200609ag.htm
Report: https://council.vancouver.ca/20200609/documents/rr1.pdf

The Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods (CVN) is strongly opposed to this controversial rezoning going forward as a referral to Public Hearing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The restrictions on public participation in order to deal with the pandemic crisis should not be used opportunistically on projects like this that have substantial opposition both city-wide and from the local community. If approved, this project would set a huge precedent for the Broadway Corridor.

We remain concerned about the virtual electronic Council meetings and Public Hearings. The technology has not been reliable and it is not the same as having Council present in chambers as required under the Vancouver Charter that is now temporarily suspended for the pandemic crisis.

City Hall Council chambers were created so that government business could be conducted in plain sight, before the public, transparently and out in the open as per the Vancouver Charter.

We appreciate that Council raised concerns about referring this project to Public Hearing when Council considered the referral back in March and that staff withdrew the report from the Council agenda in April.

CVN continues to oppose this referral to Public Hearing during the pandemic. We request that the report be held and not be referred at this time.

Thank you,
Larry A. Benge, Co-chair
Dorothy Barkley, Co-chair
Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods

Member Groups of the Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods

Arbutus Ridge Community Association
Arbutus Ridge/ Kerrisdale/ Shaughnessy Visions
Cedar Cottage Area Neighbours
Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood Council
Dunbar Residents Association
Fairview/South Granville Action Committee
False Creek Residents Association
Grandview Woodland Area Council
Granville-Burrard Residents & Business Assoc.
Greater Yaletown Community Association
Joyce Area Residents
Kitsilano-Arbutus Residents Association
Kits Point Residents Association
Marpole Residents Coalition
Norquay Residents
NW Point Grey Home Owners Association
Oakridge Langara Area Residents
Residents Association Mount Pleasant
Riley Park/South Cambie Visions
Shaughnessy Heights Property Owners Assoc.
Strathcona Residents Association
Upper Kitsilano Residents Association
West End Neighbours Society
West Kitsilano Residents Association
West Point Grey Residents Associatio