24 September 2011

Capital Plan passes - No pool for Mount Pleasant

The Park Board passed the Capital Plan last Monday with one amendment regarding tennis courts at Kits Beach. The plan includes a new annex for Kensington CC and the chance of a new community centre for Marpole, though only half the financing was approved and it is contingent on finding new land to build it, along with a new library, within the central business area of the neighbourhood. An amendment by Commissioner Ian Robertson saw some money moved from new street trees to rebuild the tennis courts at Kits beach--something that was included in the last capital Plan but got taken away as other priorities superseded it. I attempted to make another amendment, to add $1 million dollars to start the process of re-building an outdoor pool in Mt. Pleasant, but it died when there was no seconder for the motion. The Capital Plan then went to City Council where it was passed and now will be presented on the November 19th civic ballot.

I'm not happy with this plan. I don't think the public process was transparent nor fair, and the input of the elected commissioners was limited at best. Kerrisdale, Hastings and West Point Grey are in dire need of new community centres. The Kerrisdale pool and arena are both well past their best before date and should be replaced soon. A lot of new street trees will be added to Vancouver, which is a good thing, but no new money for their maintenance was included (maintenance is operational rather capital expenditure, but we shouldn't be adding to the infrastructure of the city without the assurance of money to maintain it). However, I will support this plan throughout the election period and hope you vote yes, as something is better than nothing. But please tell your candidates that they must do much better in consulting the public. It is after all your money, your city and your future.

Also on Monday the plan to sell alcohol on the greens and fairways of Vancouver's public golf courses passed by a 5-1 vote, with one commissioner absent for the vote and mine the vote against. I believe this is a short-sighted opportunistic move driven by the desire for profit at the expense of public space.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for putting a motion forward with the intent of realizing a replacement outdoor swimming pool in Mount Pleasant Park. Had there been a seconder for the motion, there could have been some discussion that may have produced an ammended motion that would be more agreeable, but unfortunately there was no other commissioner willing to engage on this issue.
    The final draft of the Pool Study Update will come before Park Board this fall. Hopefully the aquatic 'consultants' will provide more comprehensive and substantive data for our tax dollars than what they put together for the draft. And hopefully the newly elected board will have a broader view of the essential nature of outdoor aquatic facilites and the possibilities for building a multi-use facility at Mount Pleasant Park, as brought forward by the community throughout this so-called public consultation.
    I look forward to having those discussions at Park Board, and thank you for your continued support, Stuart.