The Rich Coleman VACANT LOT

A Bleak Anniversary at Little Mountain

Dedication of the Rich Colman “Vacant Lot” took place on Saturday April 8.  The project was a collaboration of Community Advocates for Little Mountain including David Chudnovsky, Barry Growe, Catherine Hembling, Linda Shuto, and David Vaisbord.

Evidently the press found our approach creative and incisive because we received great  coverage from Global, CBC and CTV and more.  Here it is!

Global TV

Global TV – The Rich Coleman VACANT LOT: 2007 – 2017 from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

CBC TV

CBC Television The Rich Coleman VACANT LOT: 2007 – 2017 from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

CTV

CTV – Dedication of The Rich Coleman VACANT LOT: 2007 – 2017 from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

And this in the VANCOUVER SUN:

http://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/little-mountain-advocates-unveil-rich-coleman-vacant-lot-plaque-on-10th-anniversary-of-closure

For more information about future events and the progress of the feature documentary:  “Champions of Little Mountain”  please email me and ask to be put on the EMAIL LIST at: vaisbord@gmail.com

Photo stills from the event:

Coleman Lot Event creators

Coleman Lot Event creators Catherine Hembling, David Vaisbord, Barry Growe, Linda Shuto, David Chudnovsky, (moral support from Ned Jacobs – behind plaque), at Little Mountain.

Photo still from "Champions of Little Mountain"

Photo still from “Champions of Little Mountain” showing timeline for return of all tenant to Little Mountain by 2010.

Media attend the ceremony for The Rich Coleman Vacant Lot

Media attend the ceremony for The Rich Coleman Vacant Lot at Little Mountain.

It's wet out during ceremony at Little Mountain for the Rich Coleman Vacant Lot

It’s wet out during ceremony at Little Mountain for the Rich Coleman Vacant Lot

Supporters attend Little Mountain event

Supporters attend Little Mountain event to celebrate Rich Coleman Vacant Lot.

Vaisbord poses next to commemorative plaque at Little Mountain, April 2017

Vaisbord (Documentary filmmaker) poses next to the rightly deserved commemorative plaque at Little Mountain, celebrating the work of Minister of Housing Rich Coleman from 2007 – 2017.

George Heyman, James Green, David Vaisbord at Little Mountain

George Heyman, James Green, David Vaisbord at Little Mountain

 

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Winter 2016-17 at Little Mountain changes view of the landscape

Hello friends of The Little Mountain Project!

The former lands of the Little Mountain Housing Project were unofficially opened to the public last month, through what appears to be motor vehicle accident that tore through the fence on the corner of Ontario Street and and 37th Avenue.  In any event, it’s time that the fence came down, as it serves no purpose than to separate citizens from a public space that will not see complete re-development for another two decades.

Montage_Sel05

Elsewhere on the property one of the Heritage Trees was damaged by the heavy snow, but it appears to be only one large branch that separated from the trunk.

Montage_Sel03

Across the fence from Little Mountain on other sites to the North-East, numerous other Vancouver Developers are well into construction of new condos.  Condos which, according to some critics of the Vancouver housing crisis, relieve some pressure from Vancouver’s overheated housing market. Holborn isn’t building any of these new homes.

Jan2017_LMP_CONDO_const_01- photo still

On the sixteen acres adjacent, Holborn CEO Joo Kim Tiah – the owner of Trump Tower – speculates on the increasing value of the former site of the Little Mountain Housing Project while doing nothing to alleviate Vancouver’s housing problems.  No new social housing, no new family housing, no new market housing, no new luxury housing.  No housing.

Montage_Sel00

The Malaysian business tycoon strictly patrols the fence around his property in order to forbid local contractors from parking next to it.

Montage_Sel01

While elsewhere along his fence a splash of pink is a reminder that the numbers of needy and homeless in Vancouver continue to rise.

Montage_Sel06

The epic winter of 2016-17 will be remembered by some for the salt crisis and by others for ice fortresses and ice skating on local streets and lakes.

IMG_8556_smaller

Happy New Year.

David Vaisbord

“Champions of Little Mountain”

Coming in 2017!

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Public Hearings at City Hall for Little Mountain REZONING – July 19, 2016

Developmental_2 B&W
Hello everyone,

Tomorrow night, July 19, at 6pm Vancouver City Hall will hold public meetings on the REZONING document for Little Mountain.  You can register to speak on line by email at publichearing@vancouver.ca. I will record this meeting and upload it to the web.

I recorded the most recent meetings of the Little Mountain Advisory Group, and will upload them as soon as I can.  As you can imagine, my time to upload content to this website is limited as I continue to edit the documentary:  Champions of Little Mountain.

I will begin to communicate more regularly as the launch date approaches.

ESSENTIAL City info here:  http://vancouver.ca/home-property-development/little-mountain.aspx

LEAVE COMMENTS  on either of my FACEBOOK SITES:
https://www.facebook.com/david.vaisbord
https://www.facebook.com/LittleMountainFilm

SEND ME a note and I’ll put you on my email list for the PREMIERE of “Champions of Little Mountain” in 2017.

See you there,
David

We welcome FINANCIAL SUPPORT this project at:
Littlemountainfilm.com

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Little Mountain of Memories in Summer of 2015…

From July through August 2015 my garden celebrated the lives of Sim and Joan Chang through a patch of crocosmes which I transplanted from their garden at Little Mountain to mine.

Sim and Joan were among the “champions” of Little Mountain, including Ingrid and Antonia Steenhuisen, Karin Nicholetti, David Chudnovsky, and many others who fought to save the social housing project from destruction.


Here they are on my boulevard. Local bees and crocosmes. Caught by my camera. Saved from blades of Holborn’s lawn mowers. The editing of the documentary film, “Champions of Little Mountain” continues.

Enjoying the rain,
David Vaisbord
Filmmaker

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The view of Little Mountain this morning.

Gallery

This gallery contains 8 photos.

Every few months I walk a portion of the periphery of Little Mountain to add media to an experimental film I’ve been shooting for 7 years.  This film will string together a series of thousands of stills which played at … Continue reading

Happy Holidays from Little Mountain

Hello Everyone,

Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones.
Here is a holiday greeting I posted last year in Dec 2013, I hope that you enjoy it.

Xmas at Little Mountain 2013 from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

2014 had many ups and down:  Sim (Sammy) and Joan passed away; I launched a major crowdfunding campaign; the last and most stalwart tenants moved out, and their building was demolished.

I hope that you are looking forward to a new and eventful 2015.
I look forward to many new projects, including the completion of The Little Mountain Film!

Snow lounge at Little Mountain

Snow lounge at Little Mountain

With your financial support we can make a truly great film.  It’s never too late to make get involved. Find out more about the fundraising campaign at littlemountainfilm.com
Sincerely,
David Vaisbord

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Visit Holborn Properties Little Mountain Haunted House!

A Holborn Halloween for Little Mountain 2014

A Holborn Haunted Halloween for Little Mountain in 2014!

Last week Holborn’s Joo Kim Tiah was in downtown Vancouver promoted his ultra luxury Trump Tower project with Donald Trump’s children.  If that wasn’t scary enough, across town in my neighbourhood, the Holborn Properties Little Mountain community office had a downright haunted look about it!

We visit new construction sites in Little Mountain vicinity

We visit new and active construction sites in Little Mountain vicinity.

Vaisbord's UBC tour visits Holborn Office

Vaisbord’s UBC tour visits Holborn Office.

We finish our tour at the last heritage bldg

We finish our tour at the last heritage bldg.

 

I was giving a tour of the area to UBC students when we came upon it. I decided to photograph it and send it to you for your enjoyment.

 

 

And be sure to check out my workshop on the Hyperlocal Documentary on November 12th.  Find out more on FACEBOOK or buy tickets here.

Have a happy and safe Halloween from the Little Mountain Project.
Boohaahaaha!
David V

 

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BC Housing is at it again!

BC Housing is poised to sell off another major piece of it’s social housing property in Vancouver, and as per usual there will be no public consultation. I hope to have some media to post on this project soon.

Meanwhile: Read about in at City Hall Watch:
http://cityhallwatch.wordpress.com/2014/10/19/stamps-place-sale-opposed

Take this link to Ray-Cam Co-operative Centre’s website where the information originates.

David V
The Little Mountain Film

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Social Housing that is Edifying

Please note:  I am writing an addendum to this posting that corrects a misperception I had about the one new seniors building.  NOTE that after only 3 years of existence (by 2017) this building was exhibiting STRUCTURAL FLAWS; cracks and stress points that were making it impossible to open screen doors; MECHANICAL FAILURE, hot water systems had collapsed leaving tenants without hot water for weeks; and INFESTATION by ants.  This building is much less than was promised. Tenants are begging to be moved out to older and better built accomodations.  In view of such events, this new building is  edifying in its egregiousness.  April 2017.

“Edify” According to the Mirriam Webster Dictionary:
Definition #1: To teach (someone) in a way that improves the mind or character.

Edifying New Social Housing Rises at Little Mountain in Vancouver - David Vaisbord Photo

Edifying New Social Housing Rises at Little Mountain in Vancouver – David Vaisbord Photo

Rising from the ground at Little Mountain is an edifying example of social housing in Vancouver. I call it “edifying” because as the first new building of a large master-planned community, it sets the height of the bar to which all new housing on the Little Mountain site – market or social housing included – must rise to.  In addition, the seamless integration of social housing with other eventual forms of housing on the site will have to follow a model of urban planning, where it is  impossible to tell social from market housing.

An angled profile meets East 37th Avenue and Main streets in Vancouver - David Vaisbord Photo

An angled profile meets East 37th Avenue and Main streets in Vancouver – David Vaisbord Photo

But look around, you can’t help but notice it’s the only construction site on a massive empty lot. Which begs the question, why is it being built?  The answer to that one is the most edifying of all.  It’s a story about 3 families who resisted eviction and with the assistance of their community, won a major victory. That’s a story that can now be told 5 years after it began, as the results of their struggle slowly rises from the ground.

The Little Mountain Story is your story. You are the community who fought to save Little Mountain.  So please stay tuned for more information on the launch of the Little Mountain Project documentary funding campaign in 2014.

And if you would like to take part in the strategy of this funding campaign, we need your passion and ideas. Contact me by email ASAP at:  vaisbord@gmail.com.

The Long View - Little Mountain's new social housing - David Vaisbord Photo

The Long View – Little Mountain’s new social housing – David Vaisbord Photo

According to Phillip Scott, Holborn’s new Development Manager, the completion date of this new seniors housing is the fall of 2014 or the spring of 2015.

The Longer View at Little Mountain: This new building sits on 16 acres of wasteland - David Vaisbord photo.

The Longer View at Little Mountain: This new building sits on 16 acres of wasteland – David Vaisbord Photo.

Coda:
Gary Mason of the Globe and Mail writes that much of the criticism of densification in Vancouver is based on worries about the Social Housing component.  Where does he get his information?  I get mine at ground level.  My neighbourhood is fighting for more units of social and affordable housing at Little Mountain.

Sincerely,
David Vaisbord
The Little Mountain Project

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An uplifting meeting with the New Architect for the Little Mountain Project

Last night the Little Mountain Advisory Group reconvened after a long hiatus, at the Hillcrest Community Centre.  I was there as always, continuing my 5-year experiment into community engagement, and shot my 350th hour of footage for The Little Mountain Project — soon to enter the fundraising stage of a feature documentary about the amazing neighbourhood in which I live.

Gary Andrishak's opening remarks - David Vaisbord recording them.

Gary Andrishak’s opening remarks – David Vaisbord recording them.

At the meeting, Vancouver City Planners re-introduced themselves and the new lead architect for the Little Mountain Project, Gary Andrishak of the IBI Group.

Andrishak breezed through an introduction of himself and his work, while stating his strong agreement with all of the policies on Little Mountain, developed through community engagement. Proving himself to be a master communicator, he invited everyone in the room to introduce themselves and proceeded to listen to community reiterate some of their ongoing concerns. Joo Kim Tiah (Holborn’s CEO) introduced himself, but kept a low profile throughout. Phillip Scott, Holborn’s new Development Manager also said a few words.

Planner Ben Johnson responds to questions.

Planner Ben Johnson responds to questions.

News that Andrishak was a lead architect on the Arbutus Walk Project (a predominantly low-rise development) was music to the ears of many in the room, as Arbutus Walk was one of the feature studies of the Advisory Group with an official tour, given three years ago by City Planners and viewable online HERE.

Andrishak identified himself as an expert in community building and planning, who would do things a little differently from that his predecessor James Cheng. As some of you may know, Cheng resigned from the project owning to recent health concerns.

Scott, Johnson & Andrishak at Little Mountain Mtg

Scott, Johnson & Andrishak at Little Mountain Mtg

He brings an interest in cutting edge urban design, and in particular new projects in Scandinavia. Does this mean that he is in favour of reduced density or height? Improved public realm? He did mention that he was very much in favour of developments with ground level connections to the communities surrounding them. I’m very interested to see what he will bring to the revisioning of our neighbourhood.

You will want to listen to his presentation for yourself.
I will upload the meeting in its entirety next week.

New construction at Little Mountain casts a long shadow in the autumn light - October 2013 - David Vaisbord photo.

New construction at Little Mountain casts a long shadow in the autumn light – October 2013 – David Vaisbord photo.

Currently, the first to be built on the site is taking shape at Little Mountain, and it does it casts a long shadow. It makes me wonder how dark the site will be, at the projected heights and density of James Cheng’s vision.

David Vaisbord

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The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: THE GOOD! The design panel looks at plans for the First NEW building at Little Mountain

A new 3-part blog series on The Little Mountain Project.
Part 1

Although I’ve written about the preparation and groundbreaking at Little Mountain in 2013, I wanted to write something about the first 6 months of this year at Little Mountain. And the activities have been so varied and bizarre that the only way to describe them was: Good, Bad, and Ugly. So without further ado…THE GOOD!

THE GOOD
Developer begins building social housing at Little Mountain for seniors!

Urban Design panel #3 – The Little Mountain Project from David Vaisbord on Vimeo.

In January 2013 the plans for the construction of the 1st new building at Little Mountain were released. They were publicly revealed for the first time, to Vancouver City’s Urban Design Panel, see above. The panel was impressed. The new social housing is of moderate height and very well designed. Actually, it’s spectacular! Congratulations to the architectural firm of Glair Williams, to James KM Cheng architects and the Holborn Group for welcoming the highly competent and imaginative Glair Williams firm into the project.

Model of new building reviewed at Urban Design Panel

Model of new building reviewed at Urban Design Panel

Congratulations also to the community and activists who thwarted BC Housing’s dreams of demolishing the last occupied building, and compelled the government into thinking about the redevelopment of Little Mountain in a smarter and more humane way. As a result, 53 units of new seniors housing will be fast-tracked. This is particularly good news for senior citizens, who were among the hardest hit by the relocation process. Separated from their beloved neighbourhood, old friends and shopping patterns, many were highly stressed. Many complained of substandard replacement housing, and could not wait to return. Some have already passed away – the interminable wait for new housing was just that.

Rich Coleman at Little Mountain Press Conference 2013

Rich Coleman at Little Mountain Press Conference 2013

The announcement of the new building offered Rich Coleman and the BC Liberals a photo opportunity prior to the 2013 Provincial Election, and I was there to record the event (which I will integrate into feature documentary on Little Mountain).

This project was a huge win for both the activists AND the government, though I don’t think that Minister Coleman* sees it that way.

Exact location of new Little Mountain Seniors' Housing.

Exact location of new Little Mountain Seniors’ Housing. Click on image to enlarge.

*Rich Coleman, in a recent conversation with me, stated that I never had anything nice to say about Little Mountain, so I have proved him wrong, right here. There were good things to report. I don’t write the script. I merely observe the play.

Coming soon…with apologies…the bad.

Respectfully yours,
David Vaisbord
The Little Mountain Project

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