Vancouver political watchers were on the edge of their seats as the first of three towers proposed to slice into the Vancouver skyline’s long-protected view of the mountains met with a council decision Tuesday July 22.
The timing of this approval is convenient, developers of the site, Crown corporation PavCo have now cleared the way and set a precedent for two more proposed view-busting towers by Concord Pacific. Had they applied first, the fact Concord have been top donors to Vision Vancouver for the last decade would have raised uncomfortable questions of the outgoing council about who we were sacrificing our view corridor for.
As expected by some, the Vision majority on council voted to approve the 400’ tower proposed by PavCo for 777 Pacific. But in a surprise twist, the skyscraper would only be approved if the units weren’t condos — rather, market rate rental units.
With the first of three mountain-view-penetrating proposed towers heading to Council for vote tomorrow, there’s a lot of talk both for and against the context and importance of Vancouver’s view cones. #SaveOurSkylineYVR
It’s easy (cynical) to paint false dichotomy: It’s just a view after all. The mountains will still be there even when obscured behind condo towers; meanwhile there’s more important issues like housing crisis, opioid crisis, economic growth, right?
Integrity of office and public trust.
Yesterday morning I tweeted news that the City’s top properties guy: Bill Aujla, manager of Real Estate and Facilities had tendered his resignation to go and work for the Aquilini Group as VP of Real Estate.
Fallout over the BOFFO-Kettle deal that would have seen a new drop-in and supportive housing along with close to 200 market condos built atop an assembled parcel of private and public owned land and Commercial and Venables.
As I commented to the Sun reporter yesterday and on Twitter as the story broke – it’s impossible to have an informed opinion on this issue because there is absolutely no transparency. Indeed, as close to half the property in question here is owned by the taxpayers, there should be an onus for even MORE clarity when it comes to negotiating Community Amenity Contributions. There isn’t.