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November = Not Boring (lots going on in Strathcona)

Friday, October 30, 2015

Hello Strathcona!

It’s been an intense few weeks with the viaducts decision looming and finally going through with a big win for Strathcona - an amendment that confirms the downgrading of Prior as part of the removal plan and immediate continued safety improvements until then.

Come out on Wednesday, November 4th at 7:15 pm (at the Strathcona Community Centre) to hear from the Prior Street Committee about the latest developments and lots of other neighbourhood news and concerns, including new leadership and volunteer positions in the SRA. 

Also, we are thrilled to host guest speaker Beth Davies from the VPL (Manager, Neighbourhood Services) who will give us the latest news about the progress on our very own local branch (nə́c̓aʔmat ct Strathcona Branch) on East Hastings Street, opportunities for public art, construction news, etc… and answer any questions from residents.
A few upcoming events in the neighbourhood to keep in mind:

Ongoing until November 8th - Heart of the City Festival
Tuesday, November 10th, from 6:30pm to 8:00pm the Inner City Safety Society is offering a presentation by the Vancouver Fire Department on Fire Prevention & Holiday Safety at the Ray-Cam Community Centre (920 E Hastings. learn how to protect you and your family from fire hazards during the holiday season and the winter months ahead. Snacks and coffee will be provided. Childcare is available on site with prior registration. 
For more information, please contact: Judy McGuire - Coordinator, Inner City Safety Society tel: 604-718-6552
Thursday - Sunday, November 19th - 22nd
19th Annual East Side Culture Crawl

Saturday, November 28th 10AM - 4PM
at the Strathcona Community Centre Gymnasium
Admission $2, kids under 12 free

Below are the minutes from last month’s SRA meeting and AGM

Strathcona Resident’s Association, monthly meeting and AGM minutes

October 7th, 2015 7:15PM

  • Introductions
  • Announcements:
    1. Sustenance Festival-World Food Festival Saturday Oct 16, 2-4 at the SCC. Anyone wanting to volunteer to make pies the night before and sell them there, contact SCC.
    2. October 24 there will be a family Halloween Dance at the SCC. Planning, decoration, etc. Holly and Christian Alleia are the contacts
    3. Heart of the City Festival coming up.
  • Viaducts.
    1. We heard from media yesterday that there would be an announcement. We were caught off guard, since there was no heads-up from the City, and what they were announcing wasn’t online until after the event. Elana and other members of the Prior Street Committee did their best, reiterating the positions the SRA has sustained.
    2. The report is now online. There were some definite wins. Prior Street safety and traffic reduction had 11 recommendations to achieve them in the near and longer terms. This was due to the firm community rejection of Prior as an arterial road, and supported by St. Paul’s rejection of same. But there were also some losses, in particular the proviso that replacing Prior and building a new arterial can be delayed or even derailed by the need for input from major players still to commit the needed $100 million. There was also no firm commitment to affordable housing, it was simply listed as an option that will be determined when the money from the Province is all committed at the end.
    3. The key is the Council meeting on October 20 at 6PM, when a large-scale turnout by the public will influence the debate. There’s a lot of pressure to leave the viaducts and upgrade them as the cheaper option. For Strathcona, removing the viaducts seems to be tied to solving the Prior street traffic problem. There was a discussion about whether we tie our continued support of its removal to a definite commitment for Prior alternatives and to social housing?
    4. We have also recently received the final Safety Audit of Prior long promised by the City and it is really inadequate. There appears to be a need to bolster the Prior St Committee with an equally active Traffic Committee. This committee would deal with some of the crazier recommendations of the safety audit- eliminating left turns on Princess, its blindness to the too fast traffic on Campbell, etc.
    5. Getting the attention of the City Council through the consultative process is all but impossible, and most of our wins in the report are the result of support from St. Paul’s and persistence
    6. We have the ear of City engineers, of the press, and we can definitely use these relationships more profitably than attempting to lobby an unreceptive City Council.
  • Given that so much new material had hit the SRA so close to the AGM, it was decided to put the AGM and the election of an new Executive off for one month. Guy Wakeman volunteered to serve on the SRA’s Executive Council, but in that time we would advertise and distribute the material and encourage a discussion of how the SRA would respond. We would then be able to have a regular and general meeting in which the members would determine a strategy for the organization and the new Executive over the coming, rather critical year.
  1. Close of Meeting - next Monthly and Annual General Meeting on November 4th, 2015 at 7:45PM at the Strathcona Community Centre.
Wishing everyone a happy and safe Halloween!