WEN writes Mayor/Council opposing Rize Alliance rezoning at Kingsway & Broadway (public hearing tonight)

The following letter is being sent to Mayor and Council before session six of the public hearing for the rezoning of the Rize Alliance at Kingsway and Broadway. Official city rezoning information is here. Community group information from Residents Association Mount Pleasant is here.

April 6, 2012
To : Mayor and Council
Re: West End Neighbours opposes Rize Alliance rezoning at Kingsway and Broadway (public hearing continues April 6)

West End Neighbours supports the position of the many residents in Mount Pleasant opposed to the Rize Alliance rezoning proposal for a 19-storey tower at Kingsway and Broadway. Many points against this rezoning have been raised in the first five nights of the Public Hearing, but we emphasise the following reasons for our opposition:

1. The proposal does not fit with the Community Plan for Mount Pleasant developed after broad community consultation and recently approved. The Rize Alliance proposal includes a tower 215 feet in height and an overall floor space ratio of 5.55. This is significantly out of scale for the neighbourhood and the site, and is at a scale not supported by the community in the consultation process. In addition, the proposed 118-foot-high building along Broadway would have significant negative impacts on the livability of surrounding buildings and the pedestrian character of the fronting streets. The tower & podium model is not an appropriate fit for this low and midrise residential neighbourhood.

2. City Council needs to demonstrate that the City’s community planning processes have integrity, especially because planning processes are about to begin in the West End, as well as in Grandview and Marpole, requiring a considerable investment of tax money, staff time, and volunteer time from the public. A Council approval of the current Rize Alliance proposal would raise serious questions about the integrity of planning processes, and lead citizens and community groups to question the value and meaningfulness of the new consultation processes.

Please reject the Rize Alliance proposal and instruct the applicant to go back to the drawing board until they can come up with a proposal more consistent with the intent of the Mount Pleasant Community plan, one more acceptable to the surrounding community and one within the density limit allowed by the current C3A zoning. We hope you will do this to respect the trust in City Hall given by citizens across all of Vancouver.

Sincerely,

Emanuel Pereira
President, West End Neighbours

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