More than 100 people packed the West Point Grey United Church Tuesday night to watch several Vancouver mayoral candidates debate over different topics.
Those topics included housing and zoning, transportation, and finances and taxation.
On the question of whether to reverse the recently approved decision allowing duplex zoning and allow for new consultation, the two independents — Shauna Sylvester and John Yano — David Chen with Pro Vancouver, Vancouver 1st’s Fred Harding and Yes Vancouver’s Hector Bremner seemed to have the same views.
“What I kept hearing over and over again is that the neighbourhoods are hollowing out. It’s a sense that kids are not in the neighbourhoods, there’s empty homes on every block,” Sylvester said. “We need to bring families back but in a way that represents the characteristic of this neighbourhood.”
“I strongly also believe that we need community plans that build sensible density into our communities,” Yano said. “[I] strongly believe that this blanket-rezoning has made it much more difficult for us to build affordable rental housing.”
“This was not a democratic process, we need to reverse this until that can be done,” Chen said. “A person who grew up in West Point Grey can also tell you these are queued streets, they cannot sustain higher density.”
“It makes the properties less affordable, it does irreparable damage to the infrastructure,” Harding said. “It is not acceptable, there was no consultation, it will be revoked.”
“No more piecemeal rezonings of our properties — I agree with my colleagues that talk about the need of a city-wide plan,” said Bremner. “We can negotiate as a community, as compassionate people, and build a better Vancouver that keeps seniors in their neighbourhood.”
There are 21 mayoral candidates seeking the city’s top job in the municipal election on Oct 20.
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