A date is set for the next round in the fight over a bicycle path proposed for Kitsilano.
On March 12 and 13, a petition that seeks to permanently halt the project will be the focus of a hearing at the Supreme Court of British Columbia.
The case was brought forward by neighbourhood resident Megan Carvell Davis. Davis’s lawyer, Robert Kasting, told the Straight that while criticism of the project has mostly pertained to a perceived lack of consultation, the court case will revolve around the terms of a trust agreed upon when the land in question was donated to the city in 1928.
“The trust says that you should keep the park in its natural state,” Kasting said in a telephone interview. “So the argument is probably going to come down to whether the words of the trust are wide enough to permit what they want to build.”
In defending the path proposed for Hadden and Kitsilano beach parks, the City of Vancouver will therefore have to convince a judge that the proposed bike path would not break its commitment to keep the area “near as possible in its present state of nature”.
“They say that a bicycle lane of the sort that is being proposed is effectively what’s part of a park,” Kasting explained, “that it is necessarily incidental to the creation of a park.”
The Vancouver park board approved plans to spend $2.2 million on the construction of the separated bike path in October 2013. The lane was designed to complete a continuous path from Canada Place to Jericho Beach.
On November 8, 2013, the Straight reported that the City of Vancouver had agreed to a B.C. Supreme Court injunction halting any construction on the path until a hearing was held on the suit.