Kitsilano Chamber of Commerce considers court action to stop Point Grey Road bike route

The City of Vancouver is set to close Point Grey Road to through traffic starting on Saturday (January 18) as part of controversial work to complete the Seaside Greenway.

However, the Kitsilano Chamber of Commerce says city hall hasn’t done enough to inform neighbourhood residents that the traffic change is permanent.

In a news release today (January 14), the small-business group declared that it is considering legal options in its fight to stop the conversion of Point Grey Road to a bike-friendly local street.

“Perhaps our civic administration will see the error of its ways when the predicted repercussions of closing Point Grey road occur. We’re still waiting for actual analysis or proof that diverting 10,000 commuter cars from Point Grey Road to other arterial routes such as West 4th or Broadway will be ‘good for business’. Nor do we believe a study even exists,” Cheryl Ziola, executive director of KCC, said in the release.

Ziola added: “We should have had in place a viable alternative to move people, such as a functional Broadway subway line, before closing any arterial Westside road.”

According to Ziola, the chamber will be closely watching the court battle over the planned bike path in Kitsilano Beach and Hadden parks. A B.C. Supreme Court hearing on a petition seeking to halt that nearby project is scheduled for March 12 and 13.

“If a precedent is set that prevents the city from significantly modifying donated parkland or restricting access by all, then the many scenic Point Grey Road parks may be studied for similar covenants,” Ziola said.

Back in July 2013, city council approved the Point Grey Road conversion, along with a York Avenue bikeway.

Changes coming to the corridor include traffic-diversion measures, widened sidewalks, and expanded parks on Point Grey Road, and one-way streets and separated bike lanes on York Avenue.

Comments (25) Add New Comment
Worshipping at the Altar of Eco-washing
The "Vision Vancouver Religion" doesn't seem to show much regard for the public even when legal action is taken. I don't see much likelihood that this plan will be reversed, regardless of the outcomes.
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skippy
Good news. The mess that has been created at the intersection of Burrard and Cornwall in Kits is a joke. Is this over budget yet? Is it being completed in the scheduled time frames? I am told that they Is the media or anyone monitoring/auditing the fucking mess at the foot of the Burrard Bridge. Apologies GS for my language but I am sick of the traffic delays and the shocking lack of oversight.
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G
Once again the bike sideshow has distracted the herds from why this action was actually taken. If you refer to the map provided by Vision for their Affordale housing Plan the section of road now being changed to "residents only" was included under the lost of "arterial streets" subject to densification. Without this change Point Grey Road and lots within 100m of it would be zoned for 3.5 storey residential structures like every other busy street in Vancouver once the plan is passed next election. Take a look around and you can find the original map online, Vision has likely modified their "official" site and sent the old map down their memory hole.
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Simon says
Man, I can't wait to be able to bike all the way from Jeicho to Stanley park this summer. Without having to get nearly killed by cars speeding down point gray like its some magical go as fast as you can shortcut. Without having to knuckle down and climb up that hill on 3rd, when I'm just out having fun not exercising.
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This should be a WAY bigger issue.
Turning shopping routes into commuter routes hurts the businesses along those routes and I'm glad the KCC is stepping up for the small businesses Vision is thumbing their nose at. Kits is one of the last areas that small businesses can survive in this city and Vision is doing everything they can to push them out in favour of more lucrative, in terms of political donations, multi-national corporations.

How is Gregor not being investigated for this mess? He bought a house on this route in anticipation of the increased property value that would be realized from his policies of privatizing a major road and re-zoning that said area. I guess he feels his neighborhood should be protected from development, yet yours should be destroyed to further his agenda. You should not be able to spend millions in public money to pad your own pockets. How is that not criminal? I guess the VPD keeps their mouths shut because they get 10% year over year funding increases. Point Grey road is also stacked with serious Vision supporters including former co-workers (and bosses) of Gregor, Meggs and the like.

The bottom line is that the area is now an absolute disaster and it's only going to get worse. You can't deny that. The proof is there for everyone to see every day. But hey since Vision doesn't take into account congestion when transportation planning everything is a runaway success. Can't wait for the viaducts to get ripped down for the benefit of Asian investors.

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Bikes R Good
We should boycott all businesses and C of C members that oppose better cycling infrastructure for Vancouver, anywhere. Huge amounts of the city are set aside for automobile infrastructure - from roads to parking to service stations - and very little for bikes. If businesses and their chambers of commerce think they can rely on car drivers only, then let them do business with car drivers.
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one of ten thousand
Like many, I'm furious at this undemocratic, unfair and just plain stupid turn of events. The alterations to Burrard, Cornwall and Pt. Grey Rd. are already causing the Burrard St. Bridge to be in a constant state of back-up. The original design was completely functional: ensuring a smooth flow for drivers, bikers and pedestrians. Now it is a fatal accident waiting to happen. And all this for what? 20 to 80 wealthy residents of Pt. Grey Rd.? My Ghandhian reaction? Given that I'm honking mad, I let those residents share in my outrage and give them a series of toots all the way down the Golden Mile.
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Re: Bikers R Good
A boycott by bikers is a lot less harmful to businesses than shutting down roads to traffic. Bikers are a tiny percentage of the population (despite the rhetoric)) and are the smallest consumer demographic. Even Transit users will suffer due to the increased road congestion. Making it harder for the vast majority of people to buy your product just to pacify the whiny minority of bikers, who feel the world owes them a trophy for being alive, is not good for business. Also, nearly all businesses you're advocating a boycott of are small locally businesses that contribute to the community in many ways. For one, The Straight would be out of business, like many other local papers, if it wasn't for the small business community in this city. How would you voice your arrogance then? But hey out with small neighborhood businesses in with "bike friendly" WalMart's.
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Mark Bowen
Well, we predicted that each of the last 100 changes we made to the roads to build safer facilities for cyclists and pedestrians were going to cause a traffic apocalypse and kill small business once and for all.

It turned out that with each of those changes, traffic flow adapted, businesses were unharmed, and we ended up with safer and more human friendly streets. But those were just flukes.

But this time! This time for sure it will finally cripple the city once and for all and we certainly won't have forgotten all about it in a few years!
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Richard
So first a vocal minority of businesses complain that they think reducing car traffic along bike routes to make them safe for children will hurt their business now this group thinks that increased traffic will hurt their business. They need to get their story straight.

Anyway, Kits business should be excited about the increase in business due to more residents and tourists using the Seaside Greenway in Kits and Pt Grey.
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Vision Trolls
It's pretty obvious Vision employees an army of trolls to shape public opinion on sites like the Straight. Every time there's an article that criticizes Vision in any way comments and thumb scores start out overwhelmingly against them, but sure enough a flood of pro-Vision comments and thumbs scores will give them the edge in any online discussion.
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ACMESalesRep
None of the major streets in Kits could be considered anything other than arterial road, far more so than Point Grey Road. Under any other circumstances I would expect the Chamber to oppose any efforts to reduce traffic on those routes, yet here they are fighting something that they think might increase it. I'd love to know what their real interests are, because the notion that adding a few more cars along 4th and Broadway is somehow going to kill businesses along those streets is hard to believe.
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foc17
Yes. Anything anti-City-of-Vancouver is spontaneous and grassroots. Anything pro-City-of-Vancouver is a troll.

Easy to see who the real troll is.
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Mark Bowen
@Vision Trolls - I'm pretty sure it takes more than snarky comments below news articles to "shape public opinion". (At least I'd hope so!)

You want to get into that game, you need to sink millions of dollars into slick TV ads to run during hockey game commercial breaks to start pushing public opinion a few percentage points in your direction of choice.

Is it really that inconceivable to some people that others might support some actions taken by the city while opposing others? I obviously am in favour of the city's actions towards completing our cycling network (just like every other major city in the world is doing right now by the way), but I'm right pissed about their record on affordable housing, and disturbed by their apparently way to friendly relationships with major developers, and happy to call them out on that.

Calling people with opposing viewpoints paid shills is just boring and stupid. People are complex and can have more nuanced opinions beyond VANCOUVER GOOD! / VANCOUVER BAD! Shocking.

(P.S. I'm still waiting on my first paycheque here Gregor!)
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DogWhoWatches
. . . and the accountants and editors at the Straight are high-fiving and yahooing. A good old comments war fired up by a good old bike vs. car conflict article. Straight out of ye olde media handbook, 1850 edition:"Conflict and negativity attracteth attention". And each of us who load this page in our browsers count as an "eyeball" and advertising revenues tick upwards, one minuscule amount after another.
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Vision Trolls
I like how everyone is getting all sensitive over me calling trolls out. Charlie had no problem calling Liberal trolls out for rigging polls and you guys had no problem supporting him (There was somewhere in the neighborhood of 30 comments supporting his troll thesis) Enough with the hypocrisy please.

http://www.straight.com/blogra/bc-liberal-trolls-skew-vote-worst-premier

Flogging message boards, or call in shows, is something every political party does. Why? Because it's an effective way at shaping public opinion. If you think an internet and PR savvy party like Vision doesn't have paid trolls you're kidding yourself. Not everyone is a Vision operative, but I can 100% guarantee they're around when transportation is brought up. It's their Achilles heel and the only issue that can bring them down.

From this comment section I can see there is one clear paid operative. I've been looking at this phenomenon for a while and it's very consistent and predictable. I made my troll comment before the Straight had even published their comment. How would I know? I could see the thumbs scores rising rapidly and knew Vision was on the scene. It happens every single time. I've seen 15 plus thumb scores swallowed up in minutes when it took hours to build that discrepancy. You simply don't get voting patterns like that in the real world, but it always happens on Vision articles.

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Simon says
Man, I can't wait to be able to bike all the way from Jeicho to Stanley park this summer. Without having to get nearly killed by cars speeding down point gray like its some magical go as fast as you can shortcut. Without having to knuckle down and climb up that hill on 3rd, when I'm just out having fun not exercising.
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Richard
@VC

If you actually bothered to read the pro Seaside Greenway comments, you would have noticed that they are in support of family friendly cycling routes and do not even mention any politians or political parties. It is the negative comments like yours that get political.

Anyway, how about sticking to the actual issue. Name calling and questioning motives is a sure sigh you don't have an much of an argument that makes sense or is based on facts.
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Kim
Having moved to Kits over 7yrs ago from Toronto and also being a biker who even commutes to work in the summer. This whole construction of closing Point Grey is a joke. I agree PG Road is busy and not ideal for bikers but really we need a special spot you can't ride on 3rd very odd, I seem to have no issue with it and I actually live in Kits and work dwtn. I also happen to live on 4th west of Macdonald which is like a highway already and I really don't feel we need the additional traffic on 4th, considering its mostly residential west of 4th. The benefit is to the residents on Point Grey I would say.
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M
G SAID:


Once again the bike sideshow has distracted the herds from why this action was actually taken. If you refer to the map provided by Vision for their Affordale housing Plan the section of road now being changed to "residents only" was included under the lost of "arterial streets" subject to densification. Without this change Point Grey Road and lots within 100m of it would be zoned for 3.5 storey residential structures like every other busy street in Vancouver once the plan is passed next election. Take a look around and you can find the original map online, Vision has likely modified their "official" site and sent the old map down their memory hole.

CHECK OUT:
http://cityhallwatch.files.wordpress.com/2012/10/cov-bylaw-admin-bulleti...
(CityHallWatch Rocks!)

and ...
http://metronews.ca/news/vancouver/392396/rezoning-map-to-identify-areas...

and ...

http://atl.sites.olt.ubc.ca/files/2011/06/PGR-safety-and-accessibility-r...

Trolls are not mythical.
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Rating: -2

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