Category Archives: Uncategorized

Taxes and trees on District of North Vancouver Agenda May 9th

District of North Vancouver (DNV) Council meets tonight at 7:00 pm to discuss at least of couple of issues that will interest DNV residents.

The by-law on tax rates is up for passage with a recommended 3.0% increase. Details of this and the tax by-law itself are included in the Council agenda package that can be found here.

http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=2881852

Also up for discussion is an agenda addendum dealing with a tree on District property near Pemberton Avenue. This discussion should be of interest for the many of us in the Delbrook community who live adjacent to District land and District trees.

The tree in the past has dropped branches damaging property. A local property owner asked for the tree to be removed. After inspections and some work on the tree, District staff are declining the request.

The agenda addendum contains a number of documents dealing with the individual tree, as well as copies of District by-laws and policies dealing with trees.

Read all about it here:

http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=2883237

One section of the District policy on tree work in the District says the following:

 On request, the District Arborist or appropriate staff will inspect trees on District property and will mitigate hazards to the public or property according to the procedures in 1.1 and Appendix 1, Tree Rating Procedure for Trees on District Property.

 

That is something to keep in mind if you are worried about the District tree next to your house.

 

No Invitation for You!

Last week property owners in the larger Delbrook area and across the District of North Vancouver were supposed to receive a card in the mail inviting them to apply to be part of the consultation on future use of the Delbrook lands.

However, a meeting of the executive of the Delbrook Community Association (DCA) May 5th learned that a number of people in our community did not get the invitation.  We need to find out how widespread this was.

Please, if you or one of your neighbours was missed, send the address to the e-mail address listed below. We don’t need the names of the home owner, just the address.

If we find out this was widespread or if specific areas were missed, we will bring it to the attention of Mayor and Council.

Please send the information to:

Delbrookgriffinneighbours (at) gmail.com

 

Note: you need to use a proper @ sign for the e-mail above. We have used it this way in this blog to prevent the address being harvested by spammers.

 

Keith Reynolds, DCA Communications

Sign up for consultation

Now that DNV Council has agreed to a consultation process for the Delbrook Lands, their consultation consultant, the SFU Centre for Dialogue has contacted people on their list with the sign up information. I am posting the message here for people who are not on their list.

I note they choose to “balance community input” making sure we know “the policy constraints that will affect decision making.” It does make one wonder what will be left over for consultation.

I note also that they say the process is “shaped by community feedback” which, again makes one wonder since market housing has been including in the next round of consultation despite receiving virtually no support in the first round.

Keith Reynolds

 

The Centre for Dialogue’s message follows:

Dear Delbrook Lands Community Members and Stakeholders,
We’re writing with two updates on the next phase of the Delbrook Lands Community Dialogue process:
– We invite those of you who would like to participate in the June 18th Delbrook Lands Deliberative Dialogue to register your interest – please visit https://sfu.fluidsurveys.com/s/delbrookdialogue/ to fill out the online form. Please note, seating for the event is limited and filling out the form does not guarantee you a space.
– The Delbrook Lands Deliberative Dialogue Process and Guidelines document has been approved by Council, available online here. Shaped by community feedback during the first phase, it contains objectives for the rest of the process, guiding principles for the community consultation, policy constraints that will affect decision making, and describes how participants will be selected for the Deliberative Dialogue day-long workshop.
Overview of the Deliberative Dialogue selection process: To balance community input in a fair and transparent way, the SFU Centre for Dialogue has designed a process that includes gender fairness, random selection for interested residents and property owners and reserved seats for community organizations and stakeholders directly impacted by the future of the Delbrook Lands. There are 100 available seats – 50 will be allocated to the local Delbrook residents and stakeholders and 50 will be allocated to District-wide residents and stakeholders. Spaces will be held for young people (ages 15-30), adults ages 31-45, and residents who live within 100 meters of the Delbrook Lands. Participation is capped at one participant per household.
Registration ends May 18th, and the random selection process will take place on May 20th in a public location at the District of North Vancouver Municipal Hall. For more information, visit: www.dnv.org/delbrooklands 
If you have any questions or comments about the Deliberative Dialogue, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
Sincerely,
The Civic Engage Team at Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue
Simon Fraser University Centre for Dialogue
Civic Engage Program
3300-515 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC CANADA V6B 5K3
Tel: 778-782-3194
E-mail: civic_engage@sfu.ca

 

North Vancouver District Council OKs next round of Delbrook Lands consultation: Delbrook Community Association “penciled in” to participate

At its regular meeting Monday April 18th North Vancouver District Council approved recommendations for the next round of consultations on what to do with the Delbrook lands presented by their consultation consultant, Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue. One hundred invited participants will attend a consultation in June.

Robin Prest, a program manager for the Centre, presented Council with a briefing of the written report submitted as part of Council’s Agenda package (the presentation to Council may be found here: http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=2865808)

Several questions were raised and answered by Council regarding the consultation process relating to who would be involved in the process and possible implications for District finances.

The author of this blog post, an Executive member of the Delbrook Community Association (DCA), raised three questions at the beginning of the meeting. I pointed out that the DCA had been working on the issue of the Delbrook Lands since 2011 but had been rejected from any role in the earlier January consultation including offering a greeting to participants. In his presentation Prest said the DCA had been “penciled in” to participate in the next round of consultations.

In the first round of consultations participants were divided in their opinion as to whether property developers should be permitted to be part of the process. I asked if they would be included in the next round of consultations, a question also raised by Coun. Lisa Muri. Prest said they were not among the groups targeted but that they might have input into the “dialogue document” that would be presented to participants to guide them as to what was feasible and aligning the process with District plans.

In the next round of consultations 100 people will participate with 50 from the Delbrook area and 50 from the larger DNV community. In effect, actually only one third of participants will be certain to be from the Delbrook area since many of the seats are reserved for community groups. I asked if it had been the practice in the past in other consultations to limit local involvement to 50% or less of participants.  Prest reminded Council that this had been their mandate. Coun. MacKay Dunn said increased consultation from the larger community was necessary because of the financial implications of the project. Coun. Bassam said the financial implications amounted to $800,000 annually. Responding to questions from Coun. Muri it appeared that this $800,000 figure came from what it might cost the District if they failed to sell the property for $40 million. CAO Dave Stuart intervened to say that Council had specifically instructed that this question be separated from the overall discussion of what to do with the property.

Several Councilors expressed an interest in increasing the breadth of consultation targeting in particular young people. Mayor Ricard Walton raised the possibility of reaching into the adjacent rental properties in the City of North Vancouver. There was no discussion as to whether this would further dilute the ability of people in the Delbrook area of the District to participate.

The “dialogue” document mentioned by Prest now becomes very important as it is increasingly clear it will be used to constrain discussion by the 100 participants invited to the June consultation. Prest said after the meeting that they would try to have the dialogue document released two weeks before the meeting.

Members of the audience after the meeting raised the issue of why “market housing” would be a part of discussions. In the earlier round of consultations only seven suggestions of the 1,100 that came forward suggested market housing for the site. Market housing remains on the agenda.

Prior to the discussion Diana Belhouse in a short presentation raised the issue of the absence of parks in the Debrook area pointing out despite repeated promises over the years no new park space had been added.

Once again, all residents of the District will receive a card prior to the next round of consultations inviting them to apply to participate. For residents and property owners the selection will be “random” with one person per household permitted.

Will the Delbrook lands consultation be an exercise in democracy? Or guided democracy?

On Monday, April 18th, North Vancouver District Council will decide the next steps in determining what will happen to the Delbrook lands, the current home of the Delbrook Community Centre, a daycare and exercise facility and a home for a number of community groups.

The process, after being stalled since the 2011 local elections, has been moving ahead since January when a facilitated consultation process sought input from 177 people as well as on-line surveys. The results of that consultation went to Council on March 7th. The written report was included in an agenda package that can be found here:

http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=2823383

The report to Council lists more than 1,000 ideas that came out of the consultation raising concerns the process will simply throw so many ideas at the wall that Council would be able to choose whatever it wanted.

Despite the mass of individual comments, some ideas came through more strongly than others. The report says more than 300 ideas were provided for community programming on the location. More than 200 ideas came forward for some sort of park and outdoor recreation. Housing was mentioned in 163 comments, including those that said there should be no housing at all on the site.

The SFU Centre for Dialogue, the consultant on the project grouped the comments from the consultation under a number of different headings. Each of the following received more than 30 comments:

Low intensity recreation               69

Park/General Green Space          67

Multi-use community centre       51

Community gardens                       42

Open space for community          32

Keep land public/don’t sell           31

People were asked if land developers should be involved in the discussion of what to do with the Delbrook Lands. The response was split with 19 respondents saying no and 19 saying yes. An additional six said if developers were involved their involvement should be limited. The consultant did not break this group down to show how support for involvement by developers was spilt between those people who live in the Delbrook area and those who do not.

The document going to Council from the Centre for Dialogue on Monday night outlines a proposal for the next round of consultations. The document is part of the Agenda package URL below:

http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=2861359

This consultation will be limited to 100 selected individuals, half from the Delbrook area and half from the larger community. This model is something of a break from the way in which planning has taken place in other areas of the District where there has been more of a focus on local residents.

As well, no attempt has been made to narrow the scope of discussion based on input received from the January consultation. Once again, everything is on the table from green space to market housing for the site.  In the January consultation market housing received seven comments from the more than 1,000 submitted.

The consultation group will be made up of 37 randomly chosen local residents and property owners and 37 resident and property owners from outside of the local area. As well, a further 13 seats have been allocated for groups currently using the Delbrook site and local community organization. A further 13 seats are reserved for groups outside of the local area. There is no outline in the report as to how these groups will be chosen, including whether or not they will include developers. The Delbrook Community Association was denied a role in the January consultation so it will be interesting to see who is chosen for this discussion.

Just to make sure the people being consulted don’t get carried away the consultation will be using, “expert knowledge to ground the exercise in real world technology and financial constraints.” Any ideas not now identified as a District priority “would likely require external funding sources. Examples of additional funding include selling or leasing a portion of the Delbrook lands, development proceeds, requesting funding from other levels of government, or partnering with other organizations.” Apparently, the idea of changing District priorities is not being considered.

And if the District does have priorities for the Delbrook lands that are in its priorities, it would be helpful for them to let us know.

Delbrook site consultation goes to Council Monday

This coming Monday we will get our first look at the results of the consultation on the use of the Debrook Lands. The consultants managing the consultation have e-mailed those of us who expressed an interest previously, so many of you will ave already see this. For those wo have not seen, the following e-mail contains links to some background information. The report itself is likely to be in the Council package that will be up on the District of North Vancouver website this coming Friday.  We will know better then what this is all about but just in case – save the day – for Monday when a good turnout at Council may be needed.

The following is the e-mail that went out yesterday:

 

Dear Delbrook Lands Community Members and Stakeholders,
The Delbrook Lands Community Dialogue process is now in Phase 2 – Research & Analysis. The District of North Vancouver and the SFU Centre for Dialogue have been analyzing a range of site-use ideas provided by community members during Phase 1, supplemented with District research. This information will be summarized and published in a comprehensive Discussion Guide which will be a critical element of the Deliberative Dialogue workshop in June.
To prepare for Phase 3 – Deliberative Dialogue, we have drafted a Summary and Guidelines document which has been shaped by input from the community and District staff. The document outlines the process and objectives for the rest of the project, defines policy constraints that will affect decision-making, and describes how participants will be selected for the Deliberative Dialogue day-long workshop, which is limited to 100 seats.
The Summary and Guidelines will be presented to District Council next Monday, April 18, during the Council meeting, which starts at 7 pm. The meeting is open to the public, or you can watch it live via the District’s web site at www.dnv.org. The agenda will be posted at http://www.dnv.org/events/council-workshop-apr-18 on Friday, April 15.
Thank you for your continued interest and involvement in the Delbrook Lands Community Dialogue process. Pending Council approval of next steps, we will be in contact again in late April to provide you with more information, including how to register your interest to participate in the Deliberative Dialogue workshop.
For more information, visit: www.dnv.org/delbrooklands
Sincerely,
The Civic Engage Team at Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue
Simon Fraser University Centre for Dialogue
Civic Engage Program
3300-515 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC CANADA V6B 5K3
Tel: 778-782-3194
E-mail: civic_engage@sfu.ca
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