June 12, 2014: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Angered for years by Vancouver’s divisive community engagement practices, communities from across the city have united as the Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods to demand more from elected officials. The Coalition today published its Principles and Goals for Collaborative Neighbourhood-Based Planning in the City of Vancouver.
The Coalition will be calling on all candidates in the city’s upcoming November election to declare publicly their support of these shared principles. The Coalition, which maintains no party affiliation, will then actively publicize which candidates and parties support the Principles and Goals and which candidates and parties reject a collaborative relationship with neighbourhoods.
The Principles and Goals document calls for re-establishing a partnership between the City and its neighbourhoods, and recognizing neighbourhoods as the fundamental building block for future land use and development. The document asks elected officials to:
• work collaboratively with residents, neighbourhood associations and community organizations throughout development planning processes;
• consider the interests of communities and residents above developer profits;
• work with local residents and local businesses to determine how best to meet city-wide and regional goals within their individual communities.
The Coalition now represents a majority of Vancouver neighbourhoods, and continues to attract and welcome new member associations. It has grown to include 24 diverse community associations from all across the city, from the West End, Downtown East Side and Point Grey, to Mount Pleasant, Strathcona and Shaughnessy Heights, all in strong support of a collaborative relationship with their civic government.
“The Coalition has clearly articulated what we expect of our government,” says Grandview-Woodland resident, Jak King, one of the founders of the Coalition. We’re seeking a Collaborative Partnership that is transparent and accountable; Development that builds community, not just bricks and mortar; and a Livable sustainable city that acknowledges neighbourhoods as the fundamental building block for future development.”
In supporting the work of the Coalition, Dunbar Residents Association representative Jonathan Weisman said: “We’ve demonstrated that a collaborative neighbourhood-centred planning process can be very successful. In Dunbar, our community vision continues to enjoy broad and strong support, and contributes to the neighbourhood’s sense of pride and engagement.”
“The absence of neighbourhood-based planning only leads to conflict and opposition to development,” said Fern Jeffries, co-chair of the False Creek Residents Association and a founding leader of the Coalition. “Our statement of Principles and Goals is timely as our neighbourhood continues fighting for a park that has been a legal commitment since 1990. Current plans involved absolutely no meaningful consultation with the neighbourhood, and that has to change.”
The full document detailing Principles and Goals and a complete listing of participating organizations can be found at our web site: coalitionvan.org. Also available is a one-page summary of the document.
Download this release (232kb PDF)