The Non-Partisan Association (NPA) candidate for an October by-election has tried to frame himself as the answer to Vancouver’s housing crisis. Hector Bremner has said what the city needs to do is increase supply, significantly and immediately. But a video has surfaced that casts some doubt on his personal commitment to that plan.
“Not all development is equal, and not all of it divine,” Bremner said speaking before council in opposition to a large residential development proposed for the intersection of Burrard and Nelson streets in the downtown core.
The video was recorded barely more than a month ago, on July 25.
“We run the unnecessary risk of damaging an important neighborhood of our city for generations,” Bremner continued, adding that if council approved the building’s construction, it would “unfairly impact existing residents’ quality of life.”
The development in question would bring an additional 331 market-rate housing units plus 61 supportive-housing units to the area, which is already densely populated with residential towers.
The mayor’s Vision Vancouver party sent the video to journalists today (September 13) with a media release that paints Bremner as a NIMBY resident who only wants to add to Vancouver’s housing supply if it’s not in the neighbourhood where he lives.
“NPA council candidate Hector Bremner: he wants more housing supply and he wants it quickly,” Vision’s release reads. “Unless it is across the street from where he lives, in which case, we don't need it and we should do a traffic study instead.”
Bremner is competing for a council seat that was left vacant in July when Vision’s Geoff Meggs resigned to take a job in the new NDP premier’s office.
Running for Vision is Diego Cardona, a 21-year-old program coordinator for Kiwassa Neighbourhood House and an advocate for immigrants and children in government care. Other candidates running in the by-election include Jean Swanson, Judy Graves, Pete Fry, and Mary Jean Dunsdon.
The deadline for council nominations is September 8 at 4 p.m. The by-election is October 14.More