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Entries from July 2015

City names new acting general manager of planning and development

September 29th, 2015 · 1 Comment

The city’s general manager of planning, Brian Jackson, is having his last day at the city Nov. 6, so the city needs someone statutorily as the planning director. This message just went out from acting city manager Sadhu Johnston. Today, September 29, 2015, Vancouver City Council approved the appointment of Jane Pickering as the Acting […]

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Has the number of single-family houses in Vancouver shrunk by 20,000? Or not at all?

September 29th, 2015 · 10 Comments

I called the city recently to try to figure out why there are such different numbers circulating as to the number of single-family houses in Vancouver? Some people (Bob Rennie, reporters) are saying 47,000, down from 67,000 some number of years before. Others (general manager of planning Brian Jackson, other reporters) say 75,000. My question […]

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Church becomes a developer with some trepidation

September 29th, 2015 · No Comments

An updated render of the Bing Thom tower for First Baptist church in my story, plus a closer look at the internal struggles the church went through to choose a developer and go through with this project.

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Why the federal candidates are suddenly sucking up to cities in this election campaign

September 23rd, 2015 · 2 Comments

It’s been a rough go for city residents across Canada the last 10 years. There’s been a definite sense that the things they care about are not at the top of the Conservative to-do list. But that has mysteriously changed this election. The prime minister announced some money for the Vancouver public library, for gawd’s […]

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Vancouver city manager severance debate 2.0

September 23rd, 2015 · 11 Comments

Okay, throwing this out there for debate in the escalating frenzy. A senior lawyer with experience in labour law wrote me the following. You’ll have to take my word for it that this is a senior lawyer and not, say, Mike Magee. But I swear on my book of UBCM resolutions that it is. Based […]

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NPA, LaPointe apologize to Vision mayor, councillor over statements during election

September 21st, 2015 · 10 Comments

We could see this one coming after the last Supreme Court judgment. VANCOUVER, Sept. 21, 2015 /CNW/ – During the 2014 civic election campaign the NPA, through its election materials, and mayoralty candidate Kirk LaPointe, made allegations of impropriety on the part of Mayor Gregor Robertson and Councillor Geoff Meggs in seeking a campaign contribution […]

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Striking tower at First Baptist Church site the latest in Vancouver’s new “sculpture garden” of new-design buildings

September 18th, 2015 · 11 Comments

FIRST BAPTIST TOWER Vancouver has been the home to a lot of same-looking slim glass towers for going on 30 years now. But, thanks to developer Ian Gillespie trying to push some innovation and a spate of office developers looking for something new and different, we’re starting to see some differences in design and some […]

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Vancouver’s revolutionary city manager is gone, leaving behind a lot of change and debate over her record

September 17th, 2015 · 13 Comments

The rumours about city manager Penny Ballem leaving the city had been circulating for so long that many of us got lulled into wondering if, in the end, nothing might happen. So the announcement Tuesday that she was out came as a surprise, as the mill had been quiet for a while. (My story in […]

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City manager Penny Ballem is gone; internal staff memo here

September 15th, 2015 · 46 Comments

This went out to staff in the same few minutes as the news release. Staff team, Today City Council has voted to initiate an important senior leadership transition for the City of Vancouver, and I want you to have the full details right away. Dr. Penny Ballem will be concluding her service as Vancouver City […]

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Competition heats up for multi-family sites in the region — locals say new offshore bidders part of it. But are they?

September 9th, 2015 · 7 Comments

Fresh off the UBC beat, I seem to have gotten embroiled in a few real-estate stories the last few days. The talk of the town the last few months (well, really, since the Cambie corridor exploded from single family to multi-family, but even more so now) has been the intense competition for multi-family sites around […]

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