City council will vote on a proposal to allow higher buildings in seven sites of the downtown core on February 1.
About 40 speakers addressed Vancouver’s planning and environment committee meeting on Thursday (January 20) evening on the Vancouver Views study, including residents opposed to the proposed towers and some representatives of downtown business organizations that support the development.
West End neighbourhood activist Randy Helten argued more time is needed for discussion before council makes a decision on the report.
“There’s a very short time frame for a deeper discussion about the key issues here,” Helten told the Straight by phone today (January 21). “There’s no rush to push this through, in my opinion.”
“This discussion comes down to the very fundamental questions about the nature of cities and the character of Vancouver,” he added.
Helten said some of the concerns conveyed to city council from speakers yesterday included questions about the environmental performance of tall buildings, potential safety risks of condo towers and broader issues around the role of higher buildings in urban design.
Helten held a community forum on the issue January 11.
Under the Vancouver Views study, a building of up to 700 feet tall would be permitted at one site, while some other sites would allow buildings of up to 550 feet.
The discussion came the same day another study of taller buildings in downtown Vancouver was put on hold.
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