Burnaby FC Soccer champions celebrated by council

Plus: Council discusses the dangers of new provincial zoning legislation

Members of the Burnaby FC under 17 boys and girls soccer teams filled the council chamber on Dec. 11, two months after both teams won the Canada Soccer Toyota National Championships. 

“I think even Christine Sinclair would be amazed at the incredible results from Burnaby FC,” Mayor Mike Hurley said. “I’m extremely proud to share that both the boys and the girls teams captured the national title, with both teams going undefeated through the tournaments.” 

Hurley listed the achievements of both teams, with the girls team having defeated Calgary West FC in the finals with penalty kicks, while the boys undefeated team beat Edmonton BTB SC. He added that this is the first year Burnaby FC has existed as a club. 

“What a way to kick off your inaugural season,” Hurley said. He congratulated the coaches, players, parents and volunteers. The mayor also handed out gifts to team members and shook their hands before the teams posed with members of council for group photos. 

Burnaby FC under 17 boys and girls teams. Photo: City of Burnaby

Following the celebration, councillor James Wang read a proclamation designating Dec. 18 as International Migrants’ Day in Burnaby, after which the discussion turned to the zoning changes of the Local Government Act, in particular bills 44, 46, and 47. Staff members presented the general manager for planning and development’s report to council, highlighting the potential negative effects of the new legislation. 

Among the issues discussed were the new requirements prohibiting mandated parking in transit-oriented areas except for accessible parking. These requirements will impact the Housing Needs Report, Zoning Bylaw, and Official Community Plan (OCP), which will all need to be updated to reflect the new changes. 

“We feel that as part of this legislation that, while we can accommodate the changes that are being imposed upon us by the province, that this does lead to unfocused growth throughout the city. It gives us some concern with the ability to maintain tenants’ assistance at the city’s tenants’ assistance program or (TAP),” the staff member said. 

The report expressed concerns about the new legislation imposed on the city without consultation with the broader public as well as the prohibition on public hearings. 

“This does have a bit of a dramatic effect on the transparency and consultation we would typically undertake in the development process,” the presenter said. 

Mayor Hurley commented on the report’s findings saying, “This response from the provincial government is based on the supply side and providing some level of affordability. I believe this is a complete fallacy. If I’m wrong, please someone show me an area in North America where people want to live that supply has actually lowered the cost of housing. And I challenge just about everyone who said that, and no one has ever been able to point anything out to me that the supply side works.” 

He then reiterated his concerns about the infrastructure, which he shared with the Beacon in November. “If we talk about infrastructure, for every 100 metres of a street that has been built in the ’50s and the ’60s to upgrade the pipes in the ground, to upgrade to where we need to handle six units on a lot, a million dollars for every 100 metres of every street in the city. I want you to think about who’s going to pay for that and how that is going to work.” 

Hurley added that there should have been more consultation with the cities. “There probably are some good things in this legislation,” Hurley said, calling it an unprecedented change in land use in the history of Canada.

This piece was made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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