On the agenda: Here’s what to expect at Burnaby’s Dec 6 council meeting
What's on the agenda at the next Burnaby city council meeting? Here are the Beacon's highlights.
Why did the city council of horses never get anything done?
Because they always voted ‘neigh’.
Okay, I know that’s not my best work. But in my defense, it is HARD to be funny all the time and sometimes, you just have to resort to typing “city council puns” into Google and stealing the first joke you see.
Aaaanyway, there’s a city council meeting on Monday at 5pm. We’re keeping an eye on several items to do with housing and homelessness in the city.
Staff will present HOME: Burnaby’s Housing + Homeless Strategy for final council approval. It comes after two years of work on the strategy, including several months of public consultation, and identifies 89 actions for five key goals:
- Inclusive and livable neighbourhoods
- Options for secure tenure
- A renter-friendly community
- A healthy supply of non-market housing
- A place where homelessness is rare, brief, and one-time
Some of the actions include identifying transit-friendly areas that would be suitable for new multi-family housing, reviewing the regulatory frameworks and zoning practices around building multi-family housing, and creating a tenant assistance policy.
There’s a couple other items on the agenda also having to do with housing and homelessness—including a summary of the city’s rental housing stock.
Homelessness response for winter
Council will also hear a joint presentation from the Director of Planning and Building and the Director of Public Safety and Community Services on how the city plans to prepare to support homeless community members this winter.
The city already plans to establish an emergency warming centre in case of extreme weather events this season. Meanwhile, BC Housing has provided 34 beds in a local hotel for homeless people who need to isolate because of COVID-19. Funding for that will continue until March 2022.
Willingdon Lands master plan
Last month, we told you about a proposed mega-development at one of Burnaby’s biggest intersections. The Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh nations, along with Aquilini Developments, have proposed a huge urban village called Willingdon Lands at the corner of Willingdon Ave and Canada Way.
At the moment, Burnaby’s Official Community Plan designates the area as a “high amenity business centre”—but staff notes that the area is on the unceded land of the Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh nations, and that that designation “does not reflect the rich pre-contact history and use of this site and the surrounding lands by the First Peoples of the area.”
The Director of Planning and Building will recommend that council approve amending the city’s Official Community Plan, and allow for the planning of an urban village there instead.