What’s up at council this week? (May 27)

District of North Vancouver

District of North Vancouver has a long, loooonng agenda with arguably the most interesting item saved until the end.

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After listening to two delegations from the North Shore Sport Council and the North Shore Young Citizens Forum, the district is expected to approve the removal of a 3,237-square metre swath of Lynn Canyon Park to make way for the Highway 1 improvement project in Lower Lynn and approval of a zoning change on the 1000 block of Marine Drive that would add more permitted commercial uses to the entire block.

Council may issue the building permit required for the rebuild of Handsworth Secondary, after deferring approval last month over construction, traffic and parking concerns.

The district could be making some changes to the ways residents are informed of pending development applications. Coun. Lisa Muri is putting forward several “intermediate enhancements,” and asking that the pending review of the official community plan include in it some consultation on how residents would like to be kept in the loop about planning.

Speaking of the OCP, council will vote on the scope, timeline and budget for the “targeted review” of the municipality’s plans for housing, transportation, climate change and the economy/employment lands.

Council is also set to name Muri as the district’s representative at the Metro Vancouver regional board, moving Mayor Mike Little into the role of alternate director.

There are votes scheduled for spending $972,000 on safety and mobility upgrades for East 29th Street, making changes in how council members bill the municipality for expenses, how the district handles people disputing bylaw tickets, as well as some tweaks to the capital budget.

Lastly, district staff are asking council to give them some direction on what to do with plans for the Maplewood Innovation District. The original plan has been divided up into two alternate, scaled back proposals since it was first presented to council and deferred last year. The most recent version reduces the overall size of the area to be considered for redevelopment down to about a quarter of its original size with the remaining parcels set aside for “future development.” It includes 250-275 rental units, which would be reserved for people who are employed on the North Shore and enough commercial and industrial space to add another 1,600 jobs, roughly.



District of West Vancouver

After years of whittling away on study and public consultation, the district’s Interim Tree Bylaw Working Group is making its final recommendations to council, though what kind of a tree bylaw council votes on remains to be seen as district staff and the working group have entirely different recommendations.

Staff are advising council to adopt a beefed up version of the interim bylaw, which bans the felling of trees with a diameter of more than 75 centimeters.

Other recommendations by staff: conduct a baseline study of the district’s existing canopy using LIDAR, have staff report back on the efficacy of the interim tree bylaw and develop and urban forest management plan.

The working group, however, is recommending council adopt a model that includes properties having a minimum number of trees, mandatory self-reporting, a cash-in-lieu option when the minimum number of trees could not be met and maximum hedge heights.

All of West Vancouver’s remaining trees have gained another five rings since council first began pondering whether there should be a bylaw governing which trees can be cut on private land.

Couns. Sharon Thompson and Marcus Wong are hoping to persuade council and the province to introduce automated speed enforcement at several locations known for leadfoot drivers. Using photo radar would deter speeders without consuming police resources, they argue in their motion., Though the exact sites for photo radar would be decided in consultation with West Vancouver police and ICBC, Thompson and Wong suggested several locations: Cypress Bowl Road, the 600-block of Marine Drive westbound, the 300-block of Marine Drive eastbound, and the vicinity of the Eagle Harbour Montessori playground.

If that isn't controversial enough, council will also be discussing their remuneration, though the agenda posted does not contain any details.

Council is also being pitched on a 14-unit single-family and duplex development in Horseshoe Bay at 404 Wellington Ave. the former site of St. Monica’s Anglican Church, and 6407 and 6403 Nelson Ave.

And Mulgrave School is seeking building permits to add two gymnasiums to their British Properties campus.


City of North Vancouver

City council is looking ahead to the eventual replacement of the aging North Shore Neighbourhood House building but the property on the 200-block of East Second Street could also include housing.

Part of Monday’s agenda includes the release of a previous in-camera motion to include “a significant non-profit housing component” in the overall project’s feasibility study.

Although the feasibility study, which has a budget of $70,000, has not yet been done, council does go so far as to say who their preferred partners will be on the project. One of the recommendations adopted by council directs the city to “provide a letter of support to Hollyburn Family Services, Catalyst Community Housing Society and Care BC indicating a commitment to working collaboratively to generate new housing opportunities on city lands.”

And council is warming up the branding iron for its premier waterfront attraction. Council will vote to name the covered portion of The Shipyards containing the winter outdoor skating rink/summer water play area and year-round and event venue. The name up for a vote: Shipyards Commons.

Council is also set to hear delegations from the North Shore Mountain Bike Association and North Shore Arts.

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