The Heights District Plan’s HX zoning is about to be approved after years of collaboration with local citizens. Two years of work and vast amounts of taxpayer dollars have gone into the process. Was it money well spent?
On May 17, the Planning Commission undermined more than two years of collaborative effort by eliminating the words “adjacent to” in favor of the word “abutting” when referring to property lines in the HX zoning. Though seemingly innocuous, and well disguised in the document, it has significant implications for stakeholders.
The “adjacent to and/or abutting” terminology considered interests of adjacent neighborhood property owners. “Abutting only” disregards the interests of adjacent property owners. The revised terminology shows deference to developers over neighbors who worked hard to secure approved protections through significant compromise.
The Navigation Center, the Westside Bike Mobility Project and the Heights District Plan are reminders that something is broken, and perhaps it is by design. The bait-and-switch strategy has played out too many times for it to be coincidence.
In this election year, please vote for candidates who embody integrity, balance and a willingness to compromise to make Vancouver a place we can all be proud of.