This is episode 3 of my hopefully-regular pre-council list of what I think are going to be the most important three items on our Council agenda on Monday* in no particular order, so you can decide if you want to tune in.
#1: Building Bylaw Amendment Bylaw No. 8030, 2018
The City is making adjustments to its building bylaw to restrict some types of pile driving, after making the changes to the Construction Noise Bylaw. The impact on residents of the current building boom is something the City recognizes, and we are trying to balance the needs of new developments with the livability impacts of construction. We have already made some adjustments to the Construction noise Bylaw to reduce the number oh hours of allowable noise, and we are now looking at getting rid of the largest diesel-hammer pile drivers for future projects. These are the loudest pieces of construction equipment, and there are viable alternatives available. Some in the development community are not happy about this. We are having an Opportunity to be Heard about this. If you have an opinion, you can come out and let us know!
#2: Official Community Plan: Phase Two of the Infill Housing Program – Discussion of Scope of Work
Things are moving fast in the housing file, as the economics of housing across the region are shifting. This piece of policy work will help the City better support the building of more flexible housing forms in our Residential Ground Oriented and Townhouse/Rowhouse areas. This follows on the work to implement laneway and carriage home policies. The goal is to figure out what kind of “missing middle” we can support and the economics of the region can support, then develop guidelines to make it easier for that type of housing to be built. Staff are going to give us an outline of their proposed workplan to make this happen.
#3: Communities on the Move:
The local chapter of HUB has asked the City of New Westminster to endorse a Communities on the Move Declaration developed and promoted by the BC Alliance for Healthy Living. A premise being approached here is that people who engage in active transportation – transit, walking, cycling – have better health outcomes than those who rely on automobiles, and as communities invest in supporting active transportation, the province’s health agencies are the primary budget beneficiaries – we save our health agencies money by supporting healthier lifestyles for our residents. I’m going to ask Council to endorse this, and as the initiative reflects so many of our goals, I’m not going to expect it to me controversial. But hey, this my listicle, so I can promote anything I want!
*footnote: The funny thing about Council: it is almost impossible to predict what three items will rise to the top and get the most debate/ public feedback / media coverage, so these are only my guesses. For a full prediction of the entire Council agenda, go to the agenda!