Published monthly by the University Neighbourhoods Association Published monthly by the University Neighbourhoods Association
Volume 3, Issue 11
NOVEMBER 19, 2012
Moving Day Draws Near For U-Hill High School
Report Recommends Prompt Action to End Traffic and Safety Concerns on Wesbrook Report is prepared by traffic consultant for UBC; two actions have been taken already
READY TO MOVE: Alex Grant, principal of University Hill Secondary School, stands beside over 2,000 empty cardboard boxes in school library. Boxes will be used to help school move to new premises.
First day of classes in new school at UBC is scheduled to be Monday, January 7th; school is being relocated from the UEL Moving day at University Hill Secondary School draws near.
A magnificent new building in Wesbrook Place at the University of British Columbia awaits occupancy with the first day of school in this building scheduled to be Monday, January 7th. On the first working day of the New Year, a moving company employed by the Vancouver School Board will start relocating desks and other furniture, books from the school library, and a thousand
other items that constitute a present-day school from their crumbling home on Acadia Road in the University Endowment Lands. The moving company then will work over the rest of the week and the weekend to complete its massive task by the first day of term. MOVING continued on Page 4.
Design of New School on UBC Campus Departs From Long Tradition Classrooms are arranged in clusters; project space is located at centre of each cluster The Vancouver School Board has designed its new school in Wesbrook Place at the University of British Columbia to be unlike any other secondary school in Vancouver. Alex Grant, principal of University Hill Secondary School, explained in an interview that while a Vancouver high school has typically been designed as “a long hallway with classrooms packed like crates on either side of the hallway” this
kind of design does not apply in the new U Hill school at UBC. Rather, the new school consists of seven ‘clusters’ of classrooms with each cluster consisting of three to five classrooms organized around a central ‘project space’. According to the educational philosophy underlying design of the new U Hill school, this design will yield increased scholastic achievement as students enjoy both the opportunity for collective work in the classrooms and individual work in the project spaces. Mr. Grant said this arrangement will compare favourably with the past. Then, students relied on moving out into the hallway to complete individual work.
As well, classrooms at the new U Hill school have walls like ‘garage doors’ meaning the walls—or parts of them— can be opened if classrooms need to be combined for, say, special courses. Asked to provide a single word that defines the new school design, Mr. Grant offered “flexible”. The U Hill principal expects the innovative design to enhance not only the scholastic achievement of his students, but he expects U Hill teachers to benefit also. Teachers will enjoy the potential for greater “collaboration”, he said. “They will be more able to build on each other’s strengths.” DESIGN continued on Page 4.
Residents and others in Wesbrook Place have raised concerns regarding traffic and safety on Wesbrook Mall. Reported concerns include pedestrian safety, speeding vehicles, stop sign compliance, and difficulty for motorists turning onto Wesbrook Mall. In consultation with UNA staff and Transportation Planning staff, UBC’s traffic consultant prepared a report to analyze those concerns and recommended strategies for addressing them. The results of that report are summarized in this issue of the Campus Resident. Please see Page 6 for full story.
UNA ‘Listen In’ Series Starts off in Wesbrook Place Residents are invited to express feelings and opinions about development of campus community; directors are excluded from speaking The inaugural ‘Listen In’ meeting organized by the University Neighbourhoods Association October 30th drew 25 campus residents to the Tapestry retirement centre with those in attendance offering opinions on ‘what works’ in the developing community at UBC, ‘what can be improved’, and ‘what actions’ might be taken to bring about those improvements. LISTEN continued on Page 10.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
UNA Agrees to Discuss Case for Election Reform Elections should be held every three years, says resident group; currently, they are held every year
PRIZE-WINNING TAEKWONDO TEAM FROM THE OLD BARN COMMUNITY CENTRE: from left to right: Juliet Feng, Jason Liang, Aidan Murphy Rao, Grace Du, Vlada Kozachok, Bruce Yu and Yike Ma (Poomsae Coach). Back centre is Master Nathan Ma.
Members of Team Make Taekwondo Coach Proud Seven-member team is from Old Barn Community Centre; nine medals were won at recent B.C. championships The seven-member Taekwondo team from The Old Barn Community Centre not only brought home four gold medals from the 2012 BC Masters Cup Championships on Oct. 13 at Capilano University in North Vancouver, they also brought home two silver medals and three bronze. Addressing members of the team, team master Nathan Ma said, “You all made me so proud. Keep going, and congratulations for your wonderful success! This is where our dreams begin.” Mr. Ma pointed out the haul of nine medals came despite the team being the
only community centre team in the competition. “All the other teams were from specific Taekwondo schools,” he said. The medals were awarded as follows: 4 Gold medals: Poomsae (patterns): Grace Du; Juliet Feng; and Vlada Kozachok Sparring: Grace Du. 2 Silver medals Poomsae (patterns): Jason Liang Sparring: Bruce Yu. 3 Bronze medals Poomsae: (patterns): Erica Song; Sparring: Vlada Kozachok and Juliet Feng. Mr. Ma thanked all who supported the team. He especially thanked The Old Barn Community Centre, the UNA, parents of team members and other supporters. “Thank you for such strong support and for giving me the chance to build such a wonderful and winning team.”
The UNA board has agreed to discuss the merits of holding elections for residentdirectors every three years instead of every year. Preliminary discussion should take place at an upcoming committee meeting. Agreement followed a presentation by Hampton Place resident Bill Holmes, who petitioned the UNA board at its November 13th meeting on behalf of the Organization of UTown Residents (OUR). Mr. Holmes said OUR believed considerable benefit would be gained if UNA elections approximate local government elections such as those held every three years in the
City of Vancouver and other communities throughout British Columbia. Mr. Homes suggested the UNA would also benefit if all its resident-directors (currently five) were subject to election or re-election at the same time. Currently, the UNA employs a staggered system which was established under previous a UNA board to provide “continuity”. Under this system, two seats will come vacant in 2013 while three seats will become vacant in 2014, and so on. Mr. Holmes argued that when a slate of candidates runs with a specific platform, “two years is not enough time to achieve things. Three is better.” He also suggested that the current system leads to “voter fatigue”. He asked for the UNA board— after directors considered it in committee—to consider putting this issue before residents for discussion.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
page 3 Published by: University Neighbourhoods Association #202-5923 Berton Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6S OB3
Editorial Page The Question UNA committee meetings are closed to the public and media; is there a case for opening them? Four resident-directors of the University Neighbourhoods Association have voted not to open up UNA committee meetings to members of the public and media. One director—Charles Menzies—has voted in favour of opening these meetings. Mr. Menzies argues that opening UNA committee meetings—which have traditionally been closed to members of the public and media since the UNA was founded a decade ago—advances the cause of democracy. He calls openness “a key aspect of accountability”. The four resident-directors—Thomas Beyer, Richard Alexander, Shaohong Wu and Erica Frank—who voted to keep committee meetings closed seem to agree that Mr. Menzies is right in principle but wrong in practice. They argue that opening committee meetings eliminates the opportunities for directors at these meetings to have unreserved discussion— which might at times become heated— and open the door to controversy that might impair the image of the UNA. Currently, campus residents learn what
directors discuss in meetings of the UNA governance committee, operations and sustainability committee and other committee through written and verbal reports the chairs of these committees deliver to the UNA board at its monthly meetings. A former vice-president of the University of British Columbia has offered the opinion that debates among directors at committee meetings are much ‘livelier’ than at full board meetings—by which point agreement has often been reached on a number of controversial—or potentially controversial—points. UBC allows the public and members of the media to attend its committee meetings just as it does its full board of governors meetings. So does the City of Vancouver. Mr. Menzies argues the chance of directors causing controversy by speaking unreservedly in open committee is but a small price to pay for advancing a more accountable system of governance at UBC. “Let’s give a whirl,” he said of the prospect of open committee meetings. The Campus Resident invites readers to respond to the question: Should UNA committee meetings be open to the public and media? Please send comments to the Editor at JTompkins@myuna.ca
Editor & Business Manager John Tompkins 604.827.3502 JTompkins@myuna.ca
Letter to the Editor The Cost of Individuality I had a good chuckle at Thomas Beyer’s comment October 15th at how the bicycle helmet laws to be implemented in B.C. are infringing on his “individuality”. I suppose Mr. Beyer had similar qualms about those pesky seatbelt laws and the constant crackdown on cigarette smoking in public areas. My laughing stopped when he mentioned that he is a director of our very own University Neighbourhoods Association. What Mr. Beyer does not seem to appreciate is that we live in a province in which there is a public health care system. In short, people who engage in risk-taking behaviours end up taxing our health care system, which is provided for from the pockets of John Q. Taxpayer. I would whole-heartedly support Mr. Beyer if he were to lobby the provincial government to change our tax system, such that people who undertake high risk behaviours pay more, while those of us who refrain from such behaviours, pay less. But until that time, those of us who wear bike helmets, seatbelts, and who don’t smoke are going to pay the hospital bills for those whose “individuality” supersedes their ability to make responsible choices. Mr. Beyer’s argument is shrouded under the guise of wanting bicycle-sharing
programs to succeed in the city; I suppose he would argue that the (widely popular) car-sharing programs in the city would be even MORE successful if seatbelt laws were also repealed. The suggestion that bike-sharing programs in Toronto, Ottawa and Sydney are successful because they lack helmet laws is, in Mr. Beyer’s own words, “silly”. Your electorate is not foolish enough to believe such nonsense, Mr. Beyer. That helmet laws are a violation of an individual’s choices, is just plain selfish. If you insist on refraining from wearing a helmet when you cycle, Mr. Beyer, please pony up the cost of your trip to the ER yourself. What bothers me most about Mr. Beyer’s argument isn’t the ignorance of the argument itself, but that it comes from a director of my local University Neighbourhoods Association. “Responsible adults should be able to make their own choice” indeed; let’s make sure the choice we’re making is the responsible one. I’m all for individuality. But the question must be asked: when it comes to Mr. Beyer’s individuality, how much is it going to cost me? James Cook, Hawthorn Place resident
Listen In: Leading the Way to Democracy By Charles Menzies, UNA resident-director Listen In is a new approach to democratic processes inaugurated by the UNA on October 30, 2012. The objective of the Listen In series is to expand and develop upon the UNA’s public accountability and democratic practice in the area of emergent and longstanding issues of resident concerns. Listen In used the device of a discussion circle (in which each participant’s voice is respected and dialogue -not debate- is prioritized) to solicit community comment. Each participant had an opportunity to speak, without debate or argument. The primary topic of the first Listen In was: “what are your thoughts on development, housing, and our public spaces?” Participants were asked to address this larger issue in three rounds and then to address the following three sub-questions: (1) what works? (2) What needs improvement? (3) What more can we do? The facilitator had the meeting identify the priority items under question
2 (what needs improvement) and from there the participants identified a set of action items related to the third question, what needs improvement. What works? The general theme of comments under this heading was that our community is a beautiful and exciting place to live. The advantages of having the forest to one side, the ocean on another, and a world-class university and on yet a third side made this a desirable and wonderful place to live and to raise one’s family. There is a diversity of people –ages, cultures, occupations- that contributes to the vitality of the residential neighbourhoods. The type of housing, with a generally ground-floor entry orientation, and the mass of pedestrian friendly walk ways further adds to the positive, safe, and enjoyable feel of the UNA areas. What needs improvement? Under this category the volunteer note taker recorded each participant’s idea. Then the facilitator asked audience members to select their top three priority concerns. The three most mentioned items were: 1. Towers – density and massing con-
cerns 2. Resident rights – need to be consistent with other urban areas 3. Consultative process for planning – needs improvements These areas of improvement are all matters that the UNA has no direct control over. Our best avenue to address these areas that need improvement is to be more proactive in our advocacy on behalf of neighbourhhood residents. What more can be done? Action items. Three general categories were identified: 1. Communications –improve communications between UNA and members; between resident and UBC; between residents and our neighbours. 2. Advocacy – work to include residents in decision making related to planning; focus on improving UBC response to residents; lobby provincial government; educate residents to become more involved in the UNA. 3. Action – conduct comprehensive social and environmental assessment of the cumulative impact of housing development; UBC/UNA joint study of the public realm (what is working/what could be
improved); working group on integrating new immigrant residents into wider community. Of these three categories improved communications was the most frequently mentioned. As we go forward I am looking forward to putting into actions the considered contributions of our community. The first Listen In was a great success. It’s a model worth repeating. Listen In gives community members an avenue to share concerns and positive feedback. Now is it up to the UNA Board to move from listening to action.
Letters to the Editor & Opinions Include name, address and telephone number. Maximum lengths: Letters 400 words. Opinions 750 words. We may edit or decline to publish any submission.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
Safety Plan Puts Two Crosswalks on 16th near New U Hill School One crosswalk will be directly in front of school; other will be at Hampton Place UBC plans to make 16th Avenue safer for pedestrians by installing two fullysignalized crosswalks in the proximity of the new University Hill Secondary School. One crosswalk will cross 16th Avenue directly in front of the school (between East Mall and Wesbrook Mall), while the other will cross in front of Hampton Place (east of Wesbrook). These pedestrian-controlled traffic signals will ensure cars come to a complete stop when people are crossing 16th Avenue.
DESIGN continued from Page 1. Meanwhile, students will enjoy greater freedom of movement about the school and its facilities. “This is a building designed with learners in mind. Students will not have to get the key from a teacher to enter a classroom.” The new school will also have more room for students than the old school, Mr. Grant said. For the time being, it will provide places for up to 800 students with 650 of those places filled by the current crop of U Hill students in Grades 9
Students at the school will likely constitute the bulk of pedestrian traffic on these crosswalks. The majority of students at U Hill school come from Hampton Place, Hawthorn Place, Chancellor Place, East Campus and the University Endowment Lands, neighbourhoods which are all north of 16th Avenue. They will need to cross 16th Avenue to reach school in Wesbrook Place (South Campus). Meanwhile, members of the University Hill Secondary School Parent Advisory Council (PAC) agreed at a meeting October 17th that parents should “educate their children about being adult when crossing the street.” PAC also urged parents to try not driving their children to school “because it adds a lot of congestion and creates an unsafe environment.”
MOVING continued from Page 1. Moving to Wesbrook Place will come not a day too soon for the 650 students of U Hill if only because they will have a school cafeteria in which to eat lunch during the school day. On Acadia Road, no cafeteria has existed for years, and this has left students with only one option when the lunch hour rolls around every day—sit on the floor in the school corridor to eat. Moving to the new facility in Wesbrook Place will come not a day too soon for the two dozen teachers at U Hill either. They will go from teaching in an aging high school where half the classroom space is provided by moldy portables to a stoutlybuilt new one in which classrooms are as modern and well-equipped as any in Canada. Finally, moving will not come a day too soon for Alex Grant, U Hill school principal. During an interview in the school office, Mr. Grant pointed to a large hole in the paneled ceiling above his desk. Two or three panels fell out of this ceiling recently, the result of inclement weather pressing on a fragile and aging building envelope. Fortunately, the falling panels
through 12. Starting in January, fee-paying overseas students will take another 50 places. However, the footprint of the school allows for it to be built out to a capacity of 1,000 students as the number of residents on campus grows. A former principal of Kitsilano Secondary School and other schools in Vancouver, Mr. Grant has participated in the development of the new University Hill school “since conception.” He considers the experience “very satisfying.”
did not strike the principal. “It’s time to move,” Mr. Grant said with a wry smile. The physical move to Wesbrook Place comes almost sixty years after the Acadia Road building welcomed its first students in 1954. Additional facilities opened in 1957. In the early days, graduating classes numbered about 25 students. Today, they number about 125. University Hill Secondary School had actually existed before 1954. Then, it stood at the site of the present-day University Hill Elementary School on Chancellor Boulevard. The Vancouver School Board took over jurisdiction of U Hill in 1969 when the University Hill School Board, which had built it in the 1930s, ran into a financial problem. The roof leaked with local people on the University Endowment Lands unable to find the $1 million to fix it. Once the old high school on Acadia Road is vacated, the school board will start tearing down all of it save the gymnasium. The gym will become part of a new ‘middle school’ (Grades 6-8) the VSB began building at this site a year ago.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
Chinese translation of Page 5 article in October issue of the Campus Resident by Qiuning Wang, Community Engagement and Volunteer Coordinator
Korean translation of above article UNA에서 지역참여/자원봉사 코디네이터로서의 나의 일 공자가 말씀하시길 “인생은 40 부터다” 캐나다에 이민후 나이 마흔에 학교에 다시 갈 결심을 할 때 저는 제가 지역 계획/개발에 관한 직업을 가지게 될 줄 몰랐습니다. 저의 과거 직장은 베이징에 있는 영국 대사관에서 국제사회 발전에 관한 일이였습니다. 그러나 그 당시 저는 캐나다 컨텍스트에 관한 무엇인가를 찾고 있었고 UBC(SCARP) 에서 제공하는 지역사회 학교와 지역 개발 프로그램이 저의 관심을 끌게 되었습니다. 환경 지속에 기반을 둔 SCARP 과정은 제가 인간으로서 깊게 관심을 가지는 경제 발전과 자연자원의 감소에 관한 직면, 내장 환경에 영향을 받는 우리 환경, 다문화 사회의 복잡성, 그리고 자연재해의 인간의 취약점, 그리고 이러한 문제를 해결을 위한 기술에 관하여 알고싶어하는 저의 호기심 등 많은 것 들을 다루고 있었고 이런 것들이 계기가 되어 저는 이 과정을 신청하게 되었습니다. 3년의 고된 공부이후 저는 학교에서 배운것을 적용할 만한 직업 열심히 알아보기 시작하였습니다. 훌륭한 자산과 잠재력을 가진 UNA 에서 제 경력을 시작하게 된 것은 특권이었습니다. 지난 9개월의 계약직으로 일하면서 저는 자원봉사 및 월등한 수준의 주민지역 참여의 증가를 목격하였습니다. 매년 200명 이상의 UNA주민들이
여러 종류의 위원회, 프로그램, 지역 이벤트를 위하여 2000시간 이상 봉사하고 있습니다.이 자원봉사자들은 다섯 UNA 지역으로 부터 13세 부터 76세의 젊은이 부터 노인분들, 캐나다, 스패인, 중국,한국, 호주, 이스라엘, 인도, 베트남, 말레이시아, 이란 등 다양한 나라 출신의 분들 입니다 . 여러분이 처음 이 지역에 오셨을때 아름다운 경관과 자연환경이 모든것을 알려주지는 않습니다. 그것을 알려주는 것은 여기가 어떤 지역이고 어떤 사람들이 살고 있는 지를 여러분께 알려줄 지역주민일 것입니다. 다른 많은 커뮤니티와 같이 UNA 지역도 장기간 거주하는 주민과 새로온 주민들이 같이 생활 합니다. 이번 3 월부터 4월까지 UNA에서 실시된 “ 프로그램 요구 평가”에서 저희는 우리 지역 주민들은 주민들끼리 허물없는 교류를 희망하고 있다는 강한 메세지를 얻을수 있었습니다. 특히, 새이주자들은 기존 장기 거주자들과의 소통을 희망하였습니다. “새이주자 포커스 그룹”의 한 새이주자는 이렇게 말하였습니다. “우리는 이웃집에 찾아가 문을 두드리고 교류를 하고 싶지만 혹시 그것이 사생활 방해가 되는것인지 몰라서 할 용기가 나지 않습니다.”. 저희들은 구체적인 계획을 만들기전에 전통적인 방법과 혁신적인 방법이잘 결합된 주민들을 연결해 줄 방법이 있는지를 살펴보았습니다. 올드반 커뮤니티 센터에서 시행한 걸으며
이야기하기, 여성 오후 사회클럽, 청소년 크루, 시니어 브리지, 그리고 마작클럽등 저희는 몇몇 프로젝트들을 마련해 이번 가을 프로그램에 신설 하였습니다. 위의 모든 프로그램은 모두 지역 자원봉사자들이 주도하였습니다. 90 분 걸으며 말하기 프로그램은 5개의 UNA 지역에서 20명 이상의 주민들이 참여하며 여성 오후 사회 클럽은 여섯 다른 문화를 가진 10명의 UNA 여성멤버들로 구성되어 있습니다. 이 작은 프로그램들을 통하여 저희들은 우리 주민들을 지역 사회에서 하나로 만들수 있는 가능성과 지원을 찾을수 있었습니다. 잘 연결된 지역사회는 미래의 비전을 공유하는 능력을 가지며 지역사회 내의 모든사람들에 관련된 일들에 관해 결정할 수있는 능력을 가집니다. 우리 지역 주민의 상호 연결 촉진과 별개로 우리는 통치, 예산 계획, 환경 지속 가능, 그리고 전략적 의사 결정과 같은 중요한 문제에 관해 이야기하는 것에 촛점을 맞추어야 할 필요가 있습니다. 이러한 일부 주제들은 새 이주자들뿐 만 아닌 장기 거주자들 에게도 복잡하고 어렵습니다. 이러한 주제, 문제들에 관한 새이주자와 장기 거주자 사이의 의사소통이 효과적인 참여 달성을 위하여 매우 중요합니다. UNA주민들끼리의 지속될수 있는 토론을 지지하기 위하여 저희는 내년에 위의 주제들에 관련된 정보 회의, 강좌 시리즈등을UNA프로그램들에 포함시킬 예정입니다. 저희는 지속성있고 열정이 담긴
서로간의 교류를 통하여 장기거주자와 새이주자 모두에게 의미있는 참여가 가능하기를 바랍니다. 다문화 사회에서 문화간의 연결을 일구어내는 것은 쉬운일은 아닙니다. 사람들이 모르는것에 대한 두려움을 극복하고 배우는것이 종종 요구됩니다. 우리가 문화 교류에 관하여 이야기 할때 우리는 오픈 마인드, 존중, 인내, 공감, 기술 등 여러 중요한 것들을 에 관하여 이야기 합니다. 그러나 저는 우리가 조금은 아이들 과 같으면 어떨까 생각해봅니다. 저희 아들이 이번 여름 두달동안 이곳에 있다가 다시 돌아가기전 저에게 이렇게 이야기하였습니다. (중국어로) “ 엄마 내 친구들에게 엄마가 올드반 에서 일한다고 말할거에요.” “그래? 친구들한테 엄마가 말들을 보살피고 있다고 얘기할거니?” “아니요 엄마가 역사가 있는곳에서 일한다고 말할 거에요.” “너는 어떻게 알았니?” “ 왜냐하면 올드 반 (Old barn) 이니까요.” 저는 아이와의 대화를 통해 굉장히 놀랐는데요. 그것이 단지 제 아이여서만이 아닌 조금의 영어만을 알고 있는 7살인 꼬마 아이가 언어의 벽을 넘어 중요한 것에 다가가서 느낄수 있었다는 것이였습니다. 만약 우리들이 조금만 아이들과 같다면 아마도 아이와 같은 눈으로 바라보고 , 배우고 그들의 방식으로 우리 이웃들을 대할수 있을거라 생각하며 그렇게 하면 새로운 것을 배우는 것에 대한 불편함도 이겨낼것이고 서로 다른 상대방의 세계를 이해하게 될것 이라 생각합니다.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
Summary of UBC Report on Traffic an Background To date, the following actions have been undertaken to address two immediate concerns: 1) Safety: Berton Avenue was converted to one-way operation in September to address safety and congestion problems on Berton, and to enable the removal of the 4-way stop sign at Wesbrook Mall, which was necessary to avoid problems in future from traffic backing up to the roundabout. 2) Traffic flow: to assess traffic conditions on Wesbrook Mall, a traffic study was undertaken in early October. In order to accurately measure traffic speeds, the 4-way stop signs at
Birney and Gray were removed so as not to affect the results. Now that the traffic study is complete, the 4-way stop at Birney has been reinstated. Traffic report conclusions & actions to be taken Subsequent to the actions above being taken, the report analyzed the traffic patterns in Wesbrook Place and came to the following conclusions: 1) Pedestrian Safety must be improved There are a number of deficiencies in pedestrian crossing facilities, including no pedestrian crossings signs at intersections without stop signs, bollardstyle pedestrian crossing signs at green
streets that are obstructed by parked vehicles, and no crossing markings at green streets and intersections without stop signs. Actions to be taken: Three zebra striped pedestrian crossings will be installed at: • Berton (on the north and south sides of the intersection) • Greenway connecting Tapestry and Blenz (between the route 41 bus stops) • Greenway between Birney and Gray. In addition, the 4-way stop sign at Birney was reinstalled Tuesday October 23rd. 2) Speed control measures are acceptable Traffic speeds on Wesbrook Mall are approximately 38 km/h, which is an acceptable speed. Actions to be taken: • 30 km/h signs will be posted on Wesbrook Mall and the north and south entrances to the neighbourhood, an added level of protection for pedestrians and cyclists. 3) Save-On-Foods exit requires a correction Actions to be taken: • Additional signs will be added in the Village to indicate exit routes via Shrum Lane and the new Webber Lane. 4) There is an opportunity for improved communications The report acknowledges the need for improved communication with residents and a more coherent approach to communication about traffic issues. Actions to be taken: On October 29, 2012, Krista Falkner was scheduled to join UBC Campus and Community Planning’s Transportation Planning group as its first Transportation Engineer. In November, one of Krista’s main priorities will be getting out to visit the campus community, including the UNA board and the UNA transportation subcommittee. This is a new position that recognizes the need for an in-house transportation engineering professional to deal with a wide range of transportation related issues, including campus-wide traffic control planning and management. Notice to Reader: You can read the entire report by the UBC traffic consultant on the UNA website: www.myuna.ca Summary of changes on Wesbrook Mall
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THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
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UNA Community News Sustainability Corner Community Zero Waste Events by Ralph Wells, UNA Sustainability Manager For my November column, I’d like to discuss two community events relating to reducing waste in our community. The first is an update on our Community Zero Waste Challenge, the second is to announce a community e-waste drop and a new location for dropping small batteries and cell phones, at our local Save-On-Foods. Community Zero Waste Challenge I have introduced the UNA Community Zero Waste Challenge in previous columns. I’m pleased to announce that about twenty families have decided to sign up for the Challenge (I say ‘about’ as we are in the process of finalizing numbers) which would make this the largest Challenge to date (and the first in a multi-family community). Members are represented from all of our neighbourhoods and building types (incorporating townhouse, low rise and high rises and including strata owned and rental homes), and includes your columnist. Another first: our Challenge will include the holiday season, which will present a unique set of issues and learnings.
Members are now beginning to weigh their home waste and recycling to establish a baseline. After four weeks we (including your columnist and his family) will enter the challenge period, where we will try to reduce our waste as much as possible. We will share our experiences with you here in The Campus Resident as we go through our ‘Holiday Challenge’ and our January ‘Standard Challenge’, so be sure to watch for that. Community E-Waste Drop-off I’m happy to announce our fall UNA E-Waste Drop-Off, scheduled for Saturday, November 24 in the Save-OnFoods Parking Lot (see ad below). This has proven to be a popular event, so we are adding a fall date in addition to our usual spring Drop-off. We are adding small appliances this year and the UBC bike kitchen will take your old bike! See ad for more details. I’m also very happy to announce that we have a new location in the community for recycling small batteries and cell phones: Save-On-Foods has added a ‘call2recycling’ recycling box at their customer service counter. This location is in addition to the box located at The Old Barn Community Centre. Finally, a reminder that you can always drop E-Waste at the loading bay of the UBC
Stephanie Cooper, Assistant Operational Manager and Ralph Wells UNA Sustainability Manager with the new small battery and cell phone recycling location at Save-On-Foods
USB building, located on Lower Mall near Agronomy Road on weekdays between 7:30am-3:30pm. See our website for more information (www. myuna.ca/services/recycling). Hope to see you at our e-waste drop! Also a reminder that you can help shape
the vision of our Energy and Emissions Plan by attending our world café on November 27 (see ad on Page 2) – hope to see you there too! For any questions or comments on these or other sustainability topics please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-822-3263.
UNA Budget Discussion Draws Few Residents Only three residents in attendance; this is a poorer turnout even than last year The turnout of residents at the second annual budget consultation did not live up to the expectations of the University Neighbourhoods Association. Only three residents turned out October 25th to participate in the budget consultation at The Old Barn Community Centre. This miniscule turn-out fell short even of that of a year ago. Then, eight residents participated in the inaugural budget consultation. Thomas Beyer, resident-director recently acclaimed treasurer of the University Neighbourhoods Association,
moderated discussion at the consultation, and began by summarizing the 20132014 budget of over $4.5 million. Calling campus “a wealthy community”, Mr. Beyer projected a surplus of $215,000 in the fiscal year 2013-2014. The UNA launched the annual budget forum a year ago at the behest of a group of residents who pressed for more involvement in the budget-setting process. Subsequently, the UNA incorporated consultation as a public part of its process of preparing an annual budget. This process takes place in the last three months of the year with the goal to have a final budget ready for presentation to the UBC board of governors by December 31st. Eight thousand residents live in the five UNA Neighbourhoods.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
Voice Of Campus Youth Welcome to Wesbrook Village Everyone! By Sabrina He, Grade 11 student, University Hill Secondary School After years of striving and planning, University Hill School is finally moving to its new and revolutionary campus, which has been certified as one of the most efficient energy-saving buildings in North America—technically certified as LEED Gold. With the innovative birth of the school, a grand student body will emerge instantly in the Wesbrook community, and as a result, a greater melting pot of different cultures will be created. The direct correlation between school and community will make Westbrook Village a more prosperous and influential place in which to live, work, learn and enjoy. The newly-arrived population of students will vitalize the residential area with energy and excitement, spreading a sense of youthfulness throughout the
community. Block upon block will be filled with new homes and new families, encouraging further housing development to take place. Local folks will find here a perfect venue to raise children due to its educational advantages, safe and pleasant surroundings, and the multicultural spirit flowing naturally in the air. Seniors will gain back a sense of youth thanks to this blossoming of youthful ambience. With a bright future on its side, the Wesbrook village is bound to thrive. The new school will also help local businesses meet the growing necessities of the neighborhood. Happily, there will be over five hundred students roaming around, seeking daily consumption of food, drinks, clothes, and so on. Already running are a supermarket, bank, noodle restaurant, sushi express, coffee shop, frozen yogurt place, sporting goods store, a nail salon with many other commercial outlets predicted to soon follow. The ongoing and up-and-coming stores
will lead to a higher demand for workers, thereby granting more job and volunteer opportunities and boosting the economy. Learning of course, will be dramatically enhanced because the new school’s facilities are the best of all public schools in Vancouver. The library is on the top floor and illuminated by natural daylight; the gym is separated into distinct sections to accommodate concurrent classes; the additional study rooms offer an interactive environment for students to work on projects, presentation, and homework, especially along with their friends; the subject classrooms for technology, drama, PE, science laboratory, home economics, etc, will enable the community to access enhanced facilities. Putting everything together, the new school is basically a stimulator of happiness. Since more active individuals are instantly engaged in activities the community has to offer, socializing becomes
easier and customary. If we hold a track and field day, talented runners will immediately participate. If we put on a festival, dozens of volunteers will be at hand. When preparing for the Christmas season, colourfully dressed youth will be a fantastic sight to behold, not to mention the numerous number of events they plan to organize in contribution to this wonderful celebration. Overall, the mutual reinforcement that the community and new school provide each other is obvious and solid in many respects. Before long surely, the school will meld into a natural, fixed part of the community, unique and unprecedented. Thus eventually, the Wesbrook Village will undergo transformation, becoming truly special with its novel structure, booming economy, and variety in population. So welcome to the Wesbrook Village everyone!
TransLink Goes to Bed Early By Eliot Escalona, Grade 12 student, Point Grey Secondary School The clocks have just struck midnight and my friend and I are running out the door of the party house to try and get home before our curfew at 1am. We are only a 15-minute bus ride from home— we checked the schedule before leaving for the night—and know that if we catch the second-last bus at 12:17 am, we shall make it home a little earlier, so our parents will be pleased. We get to the bus stop at 12:10 am and do a celebration dance for getting there on time
to catch our bus....Twenty minutes later there is no reason to dance for we are still standing at the bus stop. We had planned to be at the bus stop to catch the second-last bus so in case we missed it, we could still catch the last bus at 12:37 am. So, we sit there hoping the last bus will come right on time or a little earlier; our moods darken as we dread the call to our parents at 1am to let them know we are going be late; however not all hope is lost, the last bus could arrive at any moment! .... Twenty minutes later we find ourselves only half way home. The last bus failed to show up and hence we are walking home in the cold, dark November night and facing an unpleas-
ant reception at home. We, as students who live in UBC, are very familiar with this recurring circumstance. Many of us, after dealing with crammed busses coming up towards UBC during the day, have to deal with the lack of buses at night as well. Even the 99 B-Line which is one of the most frequented bus routes to get to UBC has left many students waiting for buses in the late hours of the night. It is incongruent that Vancouver, one of the best cities in the world, does not provide safe, affordable and accessible transport to those who decide to have a healthy social life. I am not talking about attempting to catch a bus at 4 am - that is
unreasonable, but there are many times when twenty minutes past midnight, no more buses will come. If our city wants to start a ‘war on cars’ and wants to enforce harsh drinking and driving laws, then it must compensate its citizens with a more trustworthy public transportation system. Vancouver is now a metropolis as stated by its name ‘Metro Vancouver’; thus it must approach transportation in the way that other cities of such magnitude do. The problem does not only pertain to coming back to UBC, it happens all over the Lower Mainland; the skytrains that run on Friday and Saturday nights do their last runs at 1:16 am which is a full hour before most social hot-spots in downtown or anywhere around town close down for the night. There are not many other cities which do this; for example, the New York City metro runs until 3 am and the Toronto transit Commission (TTC) runs until 2 am. TransLink must begin to take similar steps to ensure citizens get home safely. This is a constant problem that many Vancouverites have to deal with every night when they go out or are forced to be out because of work or other commitments. The lack of late night transportation is not just an inconvenience, it is a safety hazard. The city is left with many teens and young adults wandering the streets in the early hours of the morning trying to get home; they are exposed to many irresponsible drivers who are not in the correct mental state or people who are simply just looking for trouble. Moreover, this isn’t a problem which has been slowly getting better, it is a problem that seems to be getting progressively worse. This is a problem that must be resolved as soon as possible for the sake of the many Vancouverites who use TransLink as their main mode of transportation.
page 10 LISTEN continued from Page 1. By agreement, no UNA directors spoke at the meeting, only campus residents, and those who did addressed—or sought to address—the primary subjects of development, housing and public spaces on campus. Addressing fellow-residents, Claire Robson, who served as facilitator for meeting, said. “The object is to find the full range of concerns (which residents have about life on campus). Nobody is going to challenge you. Speak for yourselves.” For the next two hours, residents spoke into an ‘open microphone’ which was passed around the room with a volunteer (Electoral Area A representative Maria Harris) noting their comments on flipcharts and resident-director Charles Menzies recording them electronically with the use of a high-tech ‘smart pen’. The ‘speeches’ of most residents lasted no more than a minute or two each. A group of seven Chinese residents expressed their opinions mostly through a translator. As to ‘what works’ in the developing community of 8,000 residents living in Hampton Place, Hawthorn Place, Chancellor Place, East Campus and Wesbrook Place, the five UNA directors in attendance heard residents offer such comments as: • I like the mix of residents and students. • The park space for kids here is the envy of Vancouver. • There is energy and enthusiasm in the community; and there is joy—that is what works. • I like all the ‘green space’ here. • I’ll tell you what doesn’t work—I’m outraged about not being involved in planning the community. • The numerous parking regulations work well (comment stated ironically). • The location is great, and there is a great diversity of people to meet. • We love the area, and love the parks. • The physical location and surrounding forest is quite unique. • There’s such a diversity of people who have been attracted here with everyone so neighbourly and friendly. • It’s much more satisfying living here than in Kerrisdale, Kitsilano or Granville Island. • We like the diversity of life on campus, but we don’t want more towers. • The schooling is good and this is the foremost reason for the arrival of new
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012 residents here. As to ‘what can be done to improve’ development of the community often referred to as the ‘University Town’, UNA directors heard such comments as: • Road access could be improved. • I’ve never lived in such a noisy, dirty building as the one I live in. • Residents need to push back more against any UBC decisions they deplore. • We need more ways to meet—a liquor store at its centre mocks our sense of community. • We should seek to avoid the ‘downtown’ concept of urban life; i.e. no mass of residential towers. • We should improve ‘the disconnect’ between UBC and its residents. • UBC should pause to think more when they deal with residents just as like they do when they deal with students. • We need to improve involvement of residents with the UBC board of governors. • There’s a shameful lack of voting rights— a situation that needs to be improved. • Reduce the danger of traffic to pedestrians. • The number of high rises in South Campus should be limited to five, which—we were told—was the maximum density when we bought here several years ago. • More robust resident participation is needed with residents involved at the conceptual stage of development—not after plans are made. • Care must be taken that future high rises do not erode what works now. • There is too much sameness to architectural design. • Communications between the UNA board and residents should be improved. As to what (specific) actions could be undertaken to bring about improvements in development of the only ‘town’ of its kind in Canada, residents had this to say: • Residents should communicate passionately with the UNA, UBC campus and community planning and areas around campus (i.e the University Endowment Lands). • Most importantly, let’s ramp up the dialogue. • Let’s improve communications with UBC. • Improve the flow of water to buildings. • We should start a public relations war on UBC for deliberately infantilizing citizens’ concerns. • Let’s look to the Province as our only constructive vehicle for change. • The Wesbrook Place Neighbourhood
Plan should be reopened, and we should talk to the government in Victoria about it. • The UNA should take the same kind of steps as if it was a municipality—assume the powers of a municipality little by little. • Let’s make a point of speaking from the heart. • Let’s undertake a visioning exercise just as is done in such Vancouver neighbourhoods as West Point Grey and Dunbar. • A UNA director should write a monthly column in the Campus Resident explaining important votes taken by the board. • The way in which individual directors vote should be noted in these reports. After analyzing comments on the flip charts (set up so that all in the room could easily see them), residents voted in favour of three courses of action they felt should take precedence in attempts to improve community life on campus. They were: 1. An enhanced process of consultation between residents and both the UNA and UBC; 2. A review of planned housing density in South Campus; 3. A bill of rights for residents. Richard Alexander, UNA chair, ended the session by calling it “insightful” and looking forward to the next Listen In session which, he said, would be “in the spring.” In a report to the UNA board after the meeting, Mr. Menzies—one of the drivers behind the Listen In project—stated, “Overall I am pleased with how this event worked out and believe that we have a model that is worth repeating. Holding such meetings provide community members with an avenue to share concerns and positive feedback. Too often people in our society face defensive officials unwilling to listen. We, staff and directors present, showed those community members who came out that we could listen without acting defensive. I have had the opportunity over the course of my professional career as a researcher to see many community meetings erupt into disarray as local government officials attempted to control the outcome. However, in the few times that I have seen local officials listen and record far more positive outcomes followed. Our Listen In series has the potential to set a new higher standard for community-based democratic practice.” You may read the Menzies report on Page 3.
UNA Directors Decline to Approve Open Committee Meetings Four resident-directors are opposed; only Charles Menzies is in favour The five resident-directors of the UNA voted four to one at their November 13th meeting against a motion to open committee meeting to members of the public and media. Only Charles Menzies, who proposed the motion, voted in favour of it. After the vote, Mr. Menzies stated, “We have voted down the whole concept of democratic governance”, while in response, board chair Richard Alexander stated, “No, we have only voted against the motion.” Mr. Menzies launched his attempt to get board approval for opening meetings of such UNA standing committees as its governance committee and operations and sustainability committee by calling openness “a key aspect of accountability.” He said, “This discussion is pretty simple. Let’s hold meetings in public. What’s to debate?” Mr. Menzies argued that making UNA committee meetings as open as UNA board meetings (which have always been open) would only make directors be seen as “more democratic, more just and more reasonable.” This comes about, he said, though a natural process of being “watched and talked about.” Fellow directors appeared to agree in principle but disagreed with how this might be put into practice. Board chair Richard Alexander commented, “I would be concerned if everything is put into the public domain for then the opportunity is lost for frank discussion between UNA directors.” Mr. Menzies, a professor at UBC, said, “I work in an open environment. I have to be open and above board on everything.” He called open meetings “part of the price of the democratic process. Let’s give it a whirl, see how it works.” In an attempt to find a compromise between closed doors and open doors, Erica Frank proposed that they try opening the sustainability committee (of which she is chair) to a trial open meeting. However, Mr. Menzies declined this proposed amendment to this motion, and soon after, the directors voted on the motion. Resident directors Thomas Beyer, Richard Alexander, Shaohong Wu and Erica Frank voted against the motion with only Charles Menzies in favour.
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THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012
Biodiversity in your backyard Exploring Campus Together By Katie Teed, Marketing and Communications, UBC Biodiversity Collections This fall UBC Biodiversity Collections offered its third round of UTown@UBC Nature Club programing to campus families. We are proud to be working with UBC’s Campus + Community Planning department to offer this program to UNA residents and Acadia Park families. The goal of the program is to connect campus resident families to their surroundings here at UBC, as well as their human, plant and animal neighbours through fun hands-on activities and adventures. To help caregivers continue the learning at home, some sessions have included a take home activity to get you and your family out exploring your neighbourhood together. The program was designed specifically for elementary school-aged children and operates the last Saturday of every month during the school year and weekly over the summer. Where this program differs from the curriculum that students learn in school is that this program instructs through what teachers call informal education. Informal education refers to education outside of the classroom. Museums, zoos, libraries, after-school groups and community organizations often offer informal educational opportunities. The Nature Club focuses on group conversations, exploration at your own pace, and experiences with family and friends instead of following a strict
lesson plan with a teacher at the front of a classroom. The Nature Club is designed as a fun, hands-on way to learn about your neighbourhood. In the spring we began by exploring different types of creatures found on campus each month by rotating through birds, insects, plants and mammals. In the summer, we explored different types of environments that these organisms live in, such as, oceans, urban, forests, and wetlands that are found around campus. In these sessions we touched real live starfish, did an urban photo safari around UBC, discovered different layers of the forest through the Canopy Walkway and evaluated the health of the Garden’s wetland through pH and turbidity tests. In the most recent sessions this fall we’ve explored a seasonal theme by looking at fall colours, harvest, and preparing for winter. The program has been a success with registration for almost all sessions of the program filling very quickly. Registration for the winter season will begin in late December/early January. If you’d like to be notified when registration begins please sign-up on our website to be added to our email list at http://www.botanialgarden. ubc.ca/utown If you are registered for the program and can’t make it to a session please let us know so we can release your space to others on the waitlist. In The Collections: November 15th saw the opening of a new photography exhibit at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum entitled Sea/Life. In this portrait series of creatures from the deep, David Ellingsen ad-
dresses the troubled relationship between humans and the oceans. Many specimens from the Beaty Biodiversity Museum Fish Collection are featured in this award-winning series. This temporary exhibit will be on display until February 3rd, 2013 and would make a wonderful trip to the museum over the holidays. The Beaty Biodiversity is open Tuesday-Sunday 10 am - 5 pm throughout the off-season. The museum is closed on Monday for research purposes. Details can be found on the museum’s website at: http://beatymuseum. ubc.ca/events UBC Botanical Garden is now open to the public “by donation” for the winter season until April 1st, which means that you are welcome to come and enjoy the garden all winter, there just won’t be a friendly face at our admissions desk.
Reminder: UNA members receive free access to UBC Botanical Garden so a donation is not needed from UNA residents, please just walk right past the gate and enjoy the Garden at this quiet time of year. UNA residents are also welcome to join us at the Shop in the Garden for the annual Members’ Sale on December 1st and 5th – everything will be on sale for 25% off with the exception of books (15% off) and fresh, handmade wreaths which begin to arrive Nov. 28th. The Greenheart Canopy Walkway is now closed for the winter season and will re-open in April. However, both are still available for pre-arranged group tours. Tours can be booked by visiting http://www.botanicalgarden.ubc.ca/ groups
Children learning ‘hands-on’ during the UTown@UBC Nature Club
UBC Student Leaders Laud Vancouver Support for Rapid Transit Line along Broadway Transportation 2040 Plan is adopted by city council; Broadway line is called top priority with students agreeing
The Alma Mater Society (AMS) has commended Vancouver City council for adopting a transportation plan that makes rapid transit to UBC along Broadway a top priority.
Representing 44,000 undergraduate students at UBC, the AMS calls the long term Vancouver transportation plan a positive step towards a solution for UBC’s transportation woes as it rec-
ognizes the importance of rapid transit through the Broadway Corridor. Transportation 2040 Plan states that “frequent, high-capacity rapid transit in the Broadway Corridor is the City’s top transit priority”. It also states, “Even with B-Line services running every 2 to 3 minutes … thousands of waiting passengers are left behind daily.” Kyle Warwick, AMS vice-president, external, strongly supports this priority. Mr. Warwick says, “UBC needs high capacity rapid transit, and I am thrilled to see this reflected in the City’s plan. “Vancouver City Council should be applauded for their leadership on this critical issue for UBC students (and others). “The AMS will continue to lobby on the funding side of the transit equation, so that students can see the priorities reflected in the 2040 plan become a reality.” The Plan echoes the AMS call for a much needed investment in transit infrastructure and the development of a sustainable, long term funding mechanism for transit. With encouragement from the University Neighbourhoods Association, the AMS has been lobbying for a solution for transit funding both independently and through membership of the Get OnBoard BC coalition.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT NOVEMBER 19, 2012