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Entries from July 2015

How Seattle has not just encouraged rental but used a tax-relief program to reduce rents for working but low-income tenants

August 30th, 2016 · 6 Comments

Cities all around North America are struggling to figure out how to provide housing for their lower-income residents —  not the poorest of the poor, but people making less than the median income for the region. Housing for that group is disappearing and not much new is appearing. A lot of federal/state/provincial programs focus on […]

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Building housing that battles bedbugs, cigarette smoke, floods, and more: how a developer and non-profit group teamed up to do that

August 29th, 2016 · 5 Comments

I got a tour of the new Jubilee House under construction this March, when it was still hardhat and steel-toed-boot territory, because the people at the 127 Society for Housing wanted me to do what they were doing. I’ve seen a lot of social-housing buildings in my 20-plus years covering this, but I have to […]

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Second-last gas station in downtown Vancouver put on the market

August 25th, 2016 · 34 Comments

The disappearing gas station is something that has attracted my attention for years. You see the signs of their former selves all over the city, sometimes sitting unused for many years because of the remediation needed (Broadway/Guelph, for example), sometimes instantly snapped up for development (Main/25th). So of course, I jumped like a rabbit when […]

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Nondescript Broadway property sells for $46 million as part of transit-line land rush

August 23rd, 2016 · 3 Comments

Every time I hear about some crazy price paid for a piece of developable land in the city, it is superceded a few months later by an even crazier price. The latest was the $46 million paid for 950 West Broadway by someone who appears to be a newbie buyer/developer in town (see story), which […]

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One of city’s biggest developers sues city over social housing — and not for the reasons you might think

August 19th, 2016 · 3 Comments

Yep, Concord Pacific, which has worked hand in hand with the City of Vancouver for decades, is suing the city, even asking for an injunction to stop the city from selling a piece of land that Concord says it handed over for social housing. My story here. Their argument — not fair now to sell […]

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More change coming to Chinatown: development sites for sale, sky-high residential rents

August 12th, 2016 · 4 Comments

A sharp observer alerted me yesterday to more signs of change in Chinatown: two key sites (the venerable Tosi’s at 624 Main and the Brickhouse/empty lot/student hostel/Jimi Hendrix shrine assembly at Main and Union) for sale and a new rental building with rents starting at $1,267 for studios. My story on that here, complete with […]

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Vancouver snags a second high-profile employee from San Francisco

August 10th, 2016 · 6 Comments

What is with all the people getting hired from the States to work here? It’s a flood. (At least the San Franciscans can cash out with enough equity to buy a trailer in Abbotsford here.) This is the latest, a big hire for the engineering department, according to internal memo. To all staff in Engineering, […]

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Younger generation gets activist to look for new housing solutions

August 10th, 2016 · 1 Comment

Catching up on some stuff here, but all still relevant. I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the group of younger people that has coalesced into a kind of pro-density group called Abundant Housing, partly inspired by the YIMBY groups that are springing up in other cities — San Francisco being the first. They are […]

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Vancouver picks new head of planning from continent’s other unaffordable city, San Francisco

August 2nd, 2016 · 12 Comments

This just out from the city. City appoints Gil Kelley as the General Manager of Planning, Urban Design and Sustainability Today, the City is announcing that Gil Kelley will serve as Vancouver’s new Chief Planner and General Manager of the newly created Department of Planning, Urban Design and Sustainability. Gil has been appointed by City […]

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