Vancouver’s natural beauty is worth protecting. Our children not only need places to play, but also places to enjoy and explore nature. We all need places of tranquil refuge from our busy lives. The animals and birds that help make our city lives enjoyable need places to nest and raise their young.
People and nature in balance is my vision for our parks and recreation system.
In the last couple of weeks, heavy rains have caused many streets to flood and Vancouver
city crews have had their hands full clearing out drains.
Albert Shamess, the Director of Vancouver Waste Management showed CTV News the problem
in one neighbourhood.
“So what we’ve got here is we’ve got a catch basin that’s been covered over with
leaves,” Shamess pointed out.
In some cases it’s just a consequence of a lot of trees but part of the problem is
blamed on negligence – some people will blow leaves into the street to clear their yard and sidewalk.
“Well I think they blow them into the streets and expect us to pick them up,” says
CTV News observed a number of people with leaf blowers in downtown Vancouver blowing
leaves into the street without picking them up.
The City has a law against leaving leaves and yard trimmings in the street and depending
on the severity, the fine can be up to $2,000.
“We haven’t handed out very many at all at this point but as things get worse in
the future continue to get worse we may end up having to do that,” Shamess said.
In an effort to get ahead of the problem, Vancouver street cleaners are moving from
neighbourhood to neighbourhood to remove piles of leaves that have fallen from the streets or have been left behind by others.
City of Vancouver needs you to do your part too to help out and reminds
to pay attention to the street cleaning signs. If you don’t move your
car you could find it towed.
Right now the city is just giving warning
tickets and towing the vehicle to a spot nearby. If the problem gets
worse, fines may be issued in the future.
The Grinch tried to steal Christmas, but the Bright Nights
Christmas Train in Stanley Park will forge ahead for the 18th year in a row.
Thieves stole about $7,000 worth of extension cords,
probably for the copper they contain, on Remembrance Day. Despite the setback, the
seasonal attraction will be up and running as scheduled on November 26.
All front gate donations and a portion of ticket sales go to
the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund. More than $1.5 million has been
raised to help burn survivors and their families since 1998.
Eight hundred fire
fighters volunteer more than 8,000 hours to set up, operate and tear down three
million lights at the train and plaza.
Media are invited to learn more:
When: Monday, November 23, 1 pm
Where: Stanley Park Train, Pipeline Road
Who: Vancouver Park Board Vice Chair Sarah Kirby-Yung, fire
fighters, burn survivors, Santa Claus
What: Train ride and fire fighters setting up lights
This year, the attraction includes a new station to protect
visitors from the elements. Architectural features in the station reflect the
previous structure, which was destroyed in a fire in 2012.
Trains depart every 4.5 minutes during peak periods for the
15-minute journey. It is one of Vancouver's most popular family attractions,
carrying more than 200,000 passengers per year.
During Bright Nights, the train’s four engines and three
sets of cars travel more than 5,000 kilometres—the distance across Canada.
Bright Nights runs until January 2 and is closed Christmas Day. Visitors are
encouraged to donate non-perishable food items to the Greater Vancouver Food
The Vancouver Park Board is seeking
experienced consultants to help it dream up a new, long-term master plan
for all of the city’s parks and recreation facilities.
It’s been 23 years since the park board last
updated the master plan that governs the more than 230 public parks and
55 recreation facilities enjoyed by more than 600,000 residents and an
unknown number of visitors from neighbouring municipalities and around
And given a lot has changed since 1992 – the
year the Blue Jays won their first World Series, Justin Trudeau was an
18-year-old camp councillor and Vancouver councillors approved the
design of the central library – the park board believes it’s time for a
plan that reflects a new reality, said research and planning manager
“Our demographics are changing, we’re becoming
an older city, and trends in park use and recreation are changing as
well,” Hutch said Monday. “It will make sure we’re investing in the
right things in the right places in the city.”
Fewer people play racquetball. Skateboarders
have sanctioned city parks. Parkour exists. Baby boomers are more
interested in walking instead of activities.
But more drastic is the change in where people
live given geography will shape where the park board focuses its
resources, Hutch said. He cited the 60,000 additional people living on
the downtown peninsula and the explosion of growth along the Cambie
corridor as examples.
The park board wants to hire outside help
because of the workload anticipated in refreshing the plan, which will
involve significant consultation with the community, Hutch said.
It’s also looking for experts that have
experience planning parks and recreation in other major centres in North
America or even around the world.
It’s a competitive bid process so Hutch could
not reveal how much the park board hopes to pay these consultants, but
there is $1.5 million set aside for planning in the park board’s
three-year capital plan.
It will take several months for the park board
to select a consultant. If all goes well, it will start the anticipated
18-month master planning process by summer 2016.
Toronto Pearson International Airport processed 38 million passengers
last year. 23 million international and transborder, so that's over 11
million arrivals per year, or 32,000 per
day, all being security screened by CBSA. That's one airport. Every
single day. Sure, screening refugees is more in depth, but it's a drop
in the ocean compared to the number of people entering Canada every
year. The suggestion that our ability to conduct security screenings is a
legitimate reason for turning away 25,000 people fleeing a brutal war
zone is a smoke-screen.
Vancouver Park Board is proposing to
spend $3 million to update the city’s Sunset Park — with new pathways, a
playground, skateboarding, and a basketball facility in the books.
commissioners are expected to vote on Monday on whether to approve the
plan after a pair of open houses were previously held for nearby
The vast majority of the feedback had suggested the
park needs more natural forest areas, particularly around the historic
stream that runs through the park, and that new paths were needed to
take park around the 3.4 hectare property.
Currently, the park has
a large area to its northeastern quarter that’s relatively unused and
being proposed as the site of the new playground, a relocated dog
off-leash area and an exercise circuit.
The skatepark and
basketball court, meanwhile, are being proposed adjacent to the
community centre along the park’s Main Street face.
The Park Board
currently has secured $700,000 of the funds it requires to make the
upgrade happen. It expects additional funding to be accessible in the
2017 budget. Construction is also expected to begin in 2017.
Year after year we wear poppies to commemorate Remembrance Day and
give thanks to all of the fallen and wounded soldiers who served their
country. First Nations soldiers played an important role in both World
War I and II and today we are honoured to bring you the story of Private
Andrew Wapachee was born in 1900 in a Hudson’s
Bay trading post that later became Hannah Bay Goose Camp located about
45 km east of Moose Factory. His father was William Wapachee from
Nemaska. His mother passed away within a few hours after his birth, and
he only survived as result of the other women at the post, who
graciously cared for and fed him. Andrew’s father was a trapper and
spent his time in the bush and as a result, Andrew was raised by his
At the young age of 17, Andrew heard about the Great
War and left to enlist. He left his Grandmother and paddled to Moose
Factory to answer the call to fight in the war. Andrew didn’t speak
English and enlisted with the help of a translator named Bertie
Morrison. Andrew was sent to the east coast of Canada, then to England
for training and then to the European battlefields of France, Belgium
During one battle, after an explosion, Andrew
found himself under a pile of bodies. After trying to crawl out he saw
the enemy advancing and shooting his comrades who were still alive. In
order to survive, he played dead and after this ordeal, Andrew was able
to flee and return to his battalion where he continued to serve. When
the First World War ended, Andrew was on the outskirts of Bonn, Germany
and when they entered the city and marched through the streets, Andrew
and his battalion were greeted with roaring cheers from both sides of
Andrew later mentioned to his son Bert Wapachee that
he often prayed during the war and attributes his survival to this.
When the 2nd Great War started, Andrew once again tried to answer the
call to fight, however by this time, he had a family and was prevented
from leaving after his wife convinced him that he had served enough.
B.C Grand Chief says many Aboriginal veterans highly decorated
CBC NewsPosted: Nov 08, 2015 5:22 PM PT
Last Updated: Nov 08, 2015 5:32 PM PT
An veteran who attended National Aboriginal Veterans Day in Vancouver on November 8, 2015. (CBC)
Aboriginal veterans marched through downtown Vancouver to mark
National Aboriginal Veterans Day in Canada, which was first
was celebrated in Manitoba in 1994 and is now held every year on
In Vancouver there was a ceremony Sunday morning at Victory Square. Dozens of veterans from a variety of combat missions took part.
"A lot of people don't know how many of our people have actually
gone," said Robert Nahanee who served in the Canadian Army in the 1960s
and 1970s and is from the Squamish First Nation.
Robert Nahanee, a member of the Squamish First Nation, served in the Canadian military in the 1960s and 1970s. (CBC)
Nahanee said it is important to honour older relatives who went off to fight overseas. He said a large percentage of people from his village, in the area known as Lower Lonsdale, fought for Canada.
"During that time out of 250 people the way I understand it, 50 of
our people served in the Canadian army and the American army, and the
remainder of that was at home, that were able to work in the
shipyards ... building warships. So they played a major role in who we
are as a free country, as Canada."
Nahanee says National Aboriginal Veterans Day helps create awareness
of the role Aboriginal people played in military service throughout
It's something Grand Chief Stewart Phillip from the Union of BC Indian Chiefs agrees with.
Union of BC Indian Chiefs Grand Chief Stewart
Phillip says First Nations people have willingly served in Canadian
military operations to protect values of democracy and freedom. (CBC)
"Many of our aboriginal veterans were highly decorated and we take
great pride in that fact and we commemorate this very special day, here
on November the 8th to draw public attention and to pay respects to the
families," he said.
Veterans Affairs Canada says the estimates are that as many as 12,000 Aboriginal people served in the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War.
To listen to City of Vancouver staff, tearing down the Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts will be a win-win.
won’t be much effect on traffic, there will be a bigger Creekside Park,
and the $200-million cost of tearing down the massive structures will
be covered by a projected $300 million in community amenity
contributions, development cost levies and land sales in the
But there are skeptics, including NPA Coun. George Affleck.
saying that the costs will be underwritten by the project in a
mysterious way,” Affleck said. “From what I can tell, it looks like they
will be raiding the community amenity contributions from across the
city to underwrite the costs of this.”
Community amenity contributions are fees the city collects from developers to pay for things like parks and daycares.
questions whether the city will be able to squeeze the projected $300
million out of a developer like Concord Pacific, which owns a big chunk
of land near the viaducts.
“I don’t see that math
adding up,” Affleck said. “The Concord deal is a provincial deal. There
are limitations to what we can extract unless the province decides to
change their deal with Concord.”
(The Concord Pacific land was purchased from the province in 1988, when the company bought the former Expo 86 site.)
Affleck’s concerns were dismissed by Vision Coun. Geoff Meggs.
staff gave assurances as well that the revenue opportunities are
significant,” Meggs said. “They come from the site. They’re not going to
be imposed on people from around the city.”
of the criticism of the plan for the viaducts was levelled at the
timeline for Creekside Park, which may not be finished for another
False Creek residents have been angry at
the city and Concord Pacific for years because of delays in completing
the park — there are an estimated 1,500 green lights hanging in windows
throughout the neighbourhood as a protest.
Tuesday, council voted in favour of a staff recommendation to tear down
the viaducts. Green Coun. Adriane Carr tried to add an amendment that
stated the park should be finished by 2024, but was rebuffed.
people of False Creek have been waiting 25 years for the delivery of
Creekside Park,” she said. “Supposedly bringing down the viaducts will
facilitate the faster development of that park, and certainly Vision has
been lauding the park delivery as a key part of the viaducts decision.
when I put it into the form of an amendment, they said that would be a
false promise, and they couldn’t necessarily deliver it, and it was out
of our hands.”
Meggs voted against amendment.
Carr’s motion would have required us to complete the park, whether or
not the financial arrangements were in line with what Concord’s legal
obligations are,” he said. “The delivery of the park is triggered by
rezoning. And the rezoning can’t occur until the park configuration is
confirmed, which we did last night. (But) there still has to be
important negotiations with Carr’s Concord, and
they have to satisfy staff and council that they’re making the
appropriate contributions to the park, daycare, to whatever the other
community amenity contributions are.”
That wasn’t good enough for False Creek resident John Murray.
keep saying, ‘Look, the viaducts come down and you are going to get
this outstanding, beautiful, bigger, better park,’” Murray said.
don’t say that this is a park that is 25 years overdue, and actually
all we’re doing is shuffling things around, and you’re getting the same
size park except it’s going to be fragmented, and the developer is
getting more waterfront property.
“That is basically what is happening, and we’re frustrated to no end with that.”
said in 2004 the city rewrote a provision in the Concord Pacific deal
that allowed it to delay building the park. He would like to see the
city play hardball with the company and speed things up.
developers have had to come up front with a park, or cash in lieu,” he
said. “Bosa did that way back in the ’90s, and Concord has been able to
keep going on (without building a park).
“They’re actually making money off all that land and not paying any taxes, and they’ve put nothing up front.”
Transportation Minister Todd Stone weighed in on the viaducts issue
from Victoria, where he told reporters it has been “a number of years
since the city took meaningful steps to reach out to PavCo, which owns
and operates BC Place (Stadium).”
It is unclear
what Stone’s issues with the city’s plans were. The proposed Georgia
Street extension would go over top of Griffiths Way, a street that
trucks use to load equipment at the stadium.
we have said to the city is any of these changes must take into account
our load-in,” PavCo’s Duncan Blomfeld said. “The city came back to us
and told us it won’t affect the load-in and load-out of the stadium.”