Burnaby City Council at a public hearing tonight (at 4949 Canada Way in Council Chambers 7 pm) will decide on a rezoning in Metrotown. Citizen activist Helen Ward has shared with MetroVanWatch her letter to Mayor and Council, pointing out some serious problems with due process. Proponents of “abundant housing” often lobby councils in the region for any housing development, anywhere, at any cost. But if these issues raised by Ms. Ward are all true, there are some serious problems with due process and integrity of the local government. See notes at bottom about the developer, Transca.
Citizens plan a rally and media event at 6:30 held by “Stop Demovictions.” If this rezoning is approved, four apartment buildings with 84 low-end market rental units be demolished.
Transca’s rezoning was scheduled to appear before council in September but the planners sent it back to be reappraised. Now it is coming forward to complete the rezoning of every apartment building on Dunblane Street.
“Stop Demovictions” is calling on Burnaby City Council to stop the rezonings of this site, declare an immediate moratorium on demolitions of all rental apartments, and immediately stop their proposed “downtown” Metrotown plan, which would make demovictions the law for 3,000 apartment units in the area.
For more information about the campaign email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit stopdisplacement.ca/burnaby
Basic details of project:
Mixed-Use Commercial / Residential
REZ # 15-49 IBI Group
Address: 6695 Dunblane, and 4909, 4929, 4971 Imperial Street
Multi-family residential tower with street-oriented townhouses fronting Dunblane Avenue and live/work units fronting Imperial Street. First Reading 2016 November 07 and Public Hearing 2016 November 22. Developer is Transca Development. A single 36-storey apartment tower with a 2-storey form fronting Nelson Avenue, a 3-storey residential form fronting Dunblane Avenue, and a 4-storey form fronting Imperial that includes 2-storey townhouses with double height amenity space above. Total of 313 units, and a total density of 5.11 floor area ratio per the RM-5s designation.
Text of Ms. Ward’s letter to Burnaby Mayor and Council, dated 22-Nov-2016
Dear Mayor Corrigan and Council,
I object to the rezoning proposed for Maywood on Dunblane.
1 – are in violation of the existing Metrotown Plan which calls for these buildings to be “protected”, and sets maximum heights and densities considerably less than those proposed.
2 – are therefore in violation of the Local Government Act and illegal.
3- Councils proposed revised Metrotown Plan has not been passed.
4 – The revised Plan consultations were – to use the language the Supreme Court of Canada accepted in its recent decision in support of the BCTF against the BC government – not conducted sincerely or in good faith. Clearly the proposed revised Plan’s destruction of the Maywood neighbourhood and mass displacement of existing residents is a foregone conclusion for Council as expressed in the proposed revised Plan. The Courts have also rejected this false form of consultation with regards to First Nations.
5 – The human rights of the residents to access and participate in meaningful, properly conducted, sincere. good faith public consultations under the LGA BEFORE the rezoning destroys their homes appear to have been violated, especially given that many of the residents have characteristics protected under human rights law: disability, family status/ marital status (eg single parent families), ethnicity, country of origin, etc. By failing to conduct consultations beforehand and in the proper manner, Council has failed to consider properly the needs and concerns of these individuals and groups.
6 – The Metrotown Plan cannot be amended properly without first amending the Official Community Plan for all of Burnaby and holding public consultations related to that.
7 – The all-BCA Council’s crass acceptance of political donations from developers for elections with obvious vested interests in Council’s decisions puts Council members in a CONFLICT OF INTEREST is rezonings that harm residents while benefiting developers’ profits in an unbalanced manner.
Who is Transca? A complete mystery, if you just look at their website.
Some excerpts, from the company’s “About Transca” page:
Adhering to a singular vision, the vast international portfolio of our parent company demonstrates our stringent commitment to design, civic stewardship and unfaltering quality…. Expanding into Canada as TRANSCA, we are devoted to investing in and developing the local economy and landscape….Canadian developer TRANSCA was born from a development legacy established over the course of thirteen years in Asia. Founded in 2003, we have grown into a highly respected real estate company that encompasses property development, property management, interior design, construction and other related industry services. The result of this industrious spirit has amounted to over 54 million square feet of high quality commercial and residential development.
So there you have it. Not a single word about a human being involved. Who is the parent company? Where is the history of 13 years in Asia. Not even a home country is mentioned.
So, WHO is behind the company that is the target of protests, for its part in huge impacts on the community?
The public and decision makers need more information about this.
Very little coverage in the media, except this eyebrow-raiser.
Excerpt … SunCom’s former vice-president Julia Lau — a former top B.C. realtor who claimed in SunCom ads to have sold $560 million worth of luxury residences from 2009 to 2014 — was one of the investors in a 2014 SunCom land assembly in Burnaby along with her business associate Mailin Chen. Mailin Chen, formerly a duck farmer in Nanjing, and his investment company Chungwa have owned or flipped 13 properties in B.C. since 2009, and Chen owns a $51.8-million Point Grey mansion. SunCom associates and investors bought 6695 Dunblane Ave., a three-storey Metrotown apartment building, for $9.36 million. The Dunblane property was flipped for $12.3 million in February 2016 — $4 million over assessed value — to Transca Development Ltd., a company incorporated in November 2015. Transca, which is authorized to issue preferred shares worth $100-million according to documents, has now made a rezoning application for a 35- to 40-storey tower on the property.