Our spring newsletter didn’t have enough space for the full letters we received about St. George’s School’s plans for its Senior School site at 29th and Camosun from Dr. Tom Matthews of St. George’s School and Roy Smith, an interested and affected neighbour.

The two articles are attached here in full:

St. George’s Article

Neighbours’ Article

and here’s the DRA Spring 2015 Newsletter.

The full versions of letters on St. George’s School’s campus planning can be found here.

Enjoy!

Please see the attached poster for DEEP’s January event:

DEEP BW Presents Anna Christensen FROM CHAOS TO HARMONY 3 hour seminar Monday January 26, 2015 in Vancouver BC, Canada 90KB

The DRA has received the attached response from the City of Vancouver to our letter regarding advance polls.

Weisman – Dunbar Residents Association – advance voting locations

We appreciate the City’s speedy response, but disagree with its approach and conclusion.  The only response of significance to our concerns is the City’s assertion that many people made use of polling stations some distance from their homes in prior elections.  They did not, notably, indicate whether these were advance polls or election day polls.

There is no surprise in that, but it does not mean that ignoring entire sections of the City is justifiable.  There are many reasons for this.

First, the City has not indicated that the long-distance travelers in prior elections were a significant proportion of voters.

Second, the City does not indicate that the ignored areas were the origin of the traveling voters. Without that data, ignoring large swathes of the City is simply unjustifiable.

Third, the City does not indicate that it understands why advance polls saw some travelers. One would expect, for instance, that commuters are likely to use advance polls near their workplaces.

Fourth, turnout at prior elections suggests disenfranchisement on a widespread basis. The City’s apparent indifference to regional representation in such circumstances is significant.

Fifth, a number of the excluded neighbourhoods have higher-than-average populations of senior citizens, for whom mobility concerns are a serious problem. The City does not indicate that it has investigated the proportion of traveling voters who are senior citizens.

Finally, the City’s history indicates a variety of sites over the years.  There is nothing to indicate that use at these sites was properly assessed in determining what areas had higher demand for voting facilities.

We do not agree with the City’s view that appropriate sites are difficult to find. There are numerous vacant rental spaces throughout the City which could be used in addition to existing public buildings. Elections merit these expenses.

The DRA will likely demand, in partnership with other concerned groups, proper release of the City’s records, so that its assertions can be fairly assessed and recommendations forwarded to prevent the anti-democratic approach taken in this instance from being repeated in future.

The long-dormant development at 41st and Balaclava, originally approved by the City in December 2009, has returned.  The current project proponent, the Hon Group, has asked the City whether they can eliminate the old access route from Balaclava, through the site, to Kerrisdale Elementary School.

At the time of the rezoning application in 2009, Heritage Vancouver demanded that this pathway be maintained.  The developer has suggested that allowing an opening in what will otherwise be a fence will encourage and/or lead to vandalism at the new development.  The DRA considers this prospect neither likely nor serious enough to justify closing off a route walked by children from a quiet, residential area to school for the better part of a century.  Similarly, the pathway provides an alternative route for seniors, including the development’s prospective residents, to the heavily-trafficked West 41st Avenue.

At the City’s request, the DRA has responded to this point, and we have sought to remind the City of the importance of the conditions attached by Council to the development approval.  Our letter is linked below.

LT CoV (Hon Group)

The DRA has written to the City of Vancouver to demand additional advance polling locations to better serve the East side of the City.  The current arrangement dramatically underserves the East side as compared to the West side and downtown core.  We are supporting neighbourhoods and organizations across the City who have done the same.

We hope to encourage equal access to City government for all Vancouver residents.

A copy of our letter is attached.

LT CoV (Advance Polling)

UBC has invited comments from neighbouring communities on its draft transportation plan.  A meeting will be held this Monday, October 6, to discuss the plan.

The draft plan is available here for review:

UBC 2013TransportationStatusReport-DRAFT

If you would like to pass comments regarding this plan along to UBC, please forward them to Wendy Massing, DVIC’s representative to UBC.

Yours Truly,

Jonathan Weisman
President, DRA

and here’s the DRA Fall 2014 Newsletter plus the Dunbar Community Patrol Flyer insert.

Enjoy!

Click image to Enlarge!

First nations in the river have hired big packer boats in Steveston to take in their big Sockeye catches of the last few river openings ! Today at 8 A. M. to 8 A. M.Tues.the Commercial River gillnetters will pound at the Sushwap Sockeye trying to move into the mouth of the River near Steveston ! One low water set , can come up easily with 500 fish !

Its a mad house of tangled nets and boats up on the jetty out there ! Sunken , Abandoned gillnets nets , chock full of fish are common ! The fairly new plastic mono filament gillnets are very efficient at catching huge amounts of Sockeye and some White Sturgeon in the daytime and at night ! The abandoned ,lost and sunken nets become “Ghost Fishers” on the river bottom unless they are retrieved !

This will be the big opening today of the season for the commercial gillnet fleet from Steveston to Mission ! The tides are great ,the Full Moon is up and the Late Run Sockeye are heading home in mass now and its all happening in the main stem of the Fraser River today near Steveston , in Richmond B. C. !

Please free to pass on this email !

Terry

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