Little Mountain Redevelopment: Meeting #23 // The Tipping Point

This Little Mountain Advisory Committee meeting is particularly important to an understanding of the planning process, prior to the official Summer 2011 Open Houses. WHAT EXACTLY IS GOING ON*** with those density models can be answered by watching the 3-part series below. I’ve divided the meeting into three essential subjects for your viewing pleasure.

***How the developer’s proposed density models went from sane to insanely dense.

This is how they divide:

Part 1: The Density Reaction.
Deals with the community’s first reaction to density models.

Part 2: The Economic Analysis.
The redevelopment economics of Little Mountain is essential viewing for anyone living in the most expensive city in the world, and surprisingly easy to understand. Learn essential city planner jargon such as “land lift”. Compliments to Mr. Blair Erb of Coriolis Consulting for a compelling performance.

Part 3: A Memorandum to the Community of Little Mountain.
The architect reads the “Memorandum of Understanding” (signed by Mayor Sullivan in 1997). Floor opens up under participants. Warning: Watching this last act of the series may raise your blood pressure!

Make sure you’ve watched part 2 (financial analysis) before you watch this one. The question arises: Will Holborn Development, with the implicit support of the Liberal government force another 1000 units onto the Little Mountain site (condo heights will rise from 8 stories to 18 stories) to “PAY” for the replacement of pre-existing social housing? Housing that was GUARANTEED by the provincial government and BC Housing as a “GIVEN” owing to its destruction in the first instance?

The community takes a collective gasp, but the story has not yet reached its climax. Hold onto your seats for the surprise ending!

Note: Next week I’ll post the First Meeting of the Advisory Committee, in which the community was asked what the wanted to see in the redevelopment plans. It all began with the Stanley King Experience…

David Vaisbord



Little Mountain Redevelopment: Meeting#23 – PART 1 The Density Reaction from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

Little Mountain Redevelopment: Meeting#23 – PART 2 The Economic Analysis from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

Little Mountain Redevelopment: Meeting#23 PART 3 – A Memorandum To the Community of Little Mountain from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

Did you like this? Share it:

2 thoughts on “Little Mountain Redevelopment: Meeting #23 // The Tipping Point

  1. Hello Mr. Chudnovsky,

    I have not heard when the next meeting is to be held, and I completely agree with you. The next public meeting of the Advisory Committee is the best time and place to challenge this plan. The moment I hear of it I will post it on this blog and send it out via email to all of my contacts.

    David V

  2. David,

    Again, thanks for this excellent service you are doing for our community.

    I was out of town so couldn’t attend the meeting, but Ned made a critical point. There is an attempt by both Holborn and BC Housing to blackmail the community into accepting a huge increase in density. And that huge increase in density will be million dollar condos, not affordable housing for families. They pretend that the sale price for the land (which nobody except them knows) must pay for supportive housing on the sites around the city in addition to the replacement units at Little Mountain. But at least two things make that threat unacceptable.

    First, as Ned reminded everyone, Coleman has said that he will fund the supportive housing sites even if the Little Mountain deal doesn’t go through. Second, why should the Little Mountain community (and the residents of the city) pay in increased density for the fact that Holborn and BC Housing made a stupid and unsustainable deal in 2008?

    Developers take risks. That’s the justification for their (often ridiculously high) profits. Holborn took a risk when they made the deal to buy the Little Mountain site and now they want us to pay for the fact that their risk didn’t work out. It’s exactly the same as the bailout of the banks two years ago when the economy was in crisis. It’s not our responsibility to bail Holborn out just because they took risks they shouldn’t have. That’s their responsibility.

    Ben Johnson from the city tried to say all of that in his explanation of the numbers – although he was much more circumspect and polite than I am. I think city council and the mayor need to provide more leadership on this issue. Of course they need to be respectful of the province, and of course they have to work with Coleman and BC Housing. And of course Coleman must be threatening them that he will withdraw funding for projects that the city needs for supportive housing. Still, there’s need for the city to be much more proactive in both advocating for the Little Mountain community and advocating for much needed social and affordable housing for families, seniors and young people.

    The answer here is to start over again. We need a community process that starts from the question: What do we want Little Mountain redevelopment to look like? We can’t start from the question: How much density do we need to accept in order for Holborn to be happy with their profit margin?

    David, do you know when the next public meeting will be held? I think there should be a major mobilization to get people to attend and refuse to be bullied.

    David Chudnovsky

Comments are closed.