Published monthly by the University Neighbourhoods Association Published monthly by the University Neighbourhoods Association
Volume 3, Issue 12
DECEMBER 17, 2012
Resident Receives Medal for Leading Development of Campus Neighbourhoods
UNA Amends Budget to Allow for Tax Assessment “The annual impact will be $160,000 going forward,” treasurer says; Government is also claiming tax retroactively
Hampton Place resident Jim Taylor receives Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal in ceremony at Cecil Green House at UBC December 13th. Christy Clark, premier of British Columbia, presented Mr. Taylor with the medal in honour of his service to the campus community. Former campus resident Dianne Ledingham also received medal. Photo credit, Marc Wang. Please see story on Page 4.
Musqueam Band Brings UEL Looks to ‘Block F’ Land Development Incorporation Plans Out into Open Community council is Profits from UEL project will be put to good use on reserve, Musqueam spokesman says; 22 acres to be developed beside University Avenue The Musqueam Indian Band opened the door on its plans for developing 22 acres of the University Endowment Lands December 6th, vowing profits from the development will go towards remedying long-standing housing and educational deficiencies on its reserve three miles to the south. In an interview at the University Golf Club during an Open House on the socalled Block F development, Wade Grant, Musqueam Band economic development coordinator and a band councillor, said, “We shall make best use of Block F development to remedy economic issues on the reserve.” Mr. Grant said. “We need 200 (more) houses for Musqueam people and we need 200 (more) places for children in our school.” The band received Block F from the provincial government in order to rectify
unanimous in UEL taking first step towards becoming municipality; residents will be asked if they support move
these deficiencies, he said, and they have every intention of doing so. The 22 acres of land—roughly triangular in shape—lies south of University Boulevard between St. Anselm’s Anglican Church to the east and Acadia Road to the west. At the furthest south, it abuts land owned by the Vancouver School Board— site of the about-to-be demolished University Hill Secondary School. Display boards and charts posted at the large and well-attended Open House indicated that historically, the Block F site has been extensively logged, including the following ‘disturbances’: the east portion (seven acres) logged in part in 1951; the centre portion (seven acres) logged entirely in 1910; and the west portion logged in part in 1951. The Musqueam Band has employed Colliers International as project manager of Block F development, and Gordon Easton, of Colliers, explained the December 6th Open House was the first of three open houses that will take place prior to the band submitting an application to the UEL administration for a change of zoning on Block F.
The University Endowment Lands (UEL) community of 4,000 residents living adjacent to the UBC campus has taken its first step towards becoming a ‘Village’ municipality. Ron Pears, chair of the UEL Community Advisory Council (CAC) says that at a meeting on December 10th, council members unanimously approved a motion whose goal is incorporation even though the motion is “limited in scope and only authorized two actions” at this stage. Mr. Pears categorized the two actions as follows: 1. Investigate the level of support within the University Endowment Lands community (for incorporation). 2. Look into the process of arranging for a feasibility study (the first of two studies required before a referendum on incorporation can be called).
BAND continued on Page 6.
UEL continued on Page 6.
The University Neighbourhoods Association has cut its budget slightly to compensate for a roughly $510,000 assessment by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). Thomas Beyer, UNA director and treasurer, said, “CRA sent us an assessment a few weeks ago to charge PST retroactively to the tune of over $350,000 and roughly $160,000 going forward.” This has caused the UNA to make primary changes to the budget, Mr. Beyer said. “We trimmed some budget items slightly so we have enough money to pay for the GST on services rendered by the UNA on behalf of UBC, as the CRA has that opinion now. “ Mr. Beyer said the UNA will likely appeal the CRA decision, but “we are not sure if it will be successful so we have to allow for it. The annual impact will be roughly $160,000.” The treasurer said the UNA might consider the option of discussing with UBC to see if it can collect ‘UBC services levies’ directly from residents - thus no GST would be payable by the UNA. Specifically the UNA has changed the draft 2012-13 budget as follows: * Removed UBC athletics access fee and utility fee from operating budget to be taken directly from the Neighbours Levy; * Added a line for GST on projected net neighbours levy; * Decreased legal fees under general administration; * Decreased noise bylaw implementation allocation under special projects; * Eliminated IT upgrades under special projects; * Decreased transportation allocation under sustainability. The UNA expects the CRA to issue a formal notice of assessment to confirm the amount of taxes owing; at which time, the UNA will have 90 days to pay the taxes owing or to appeal the assessment. Some discussion about the issue has already taken place at the finance and audit standing committee, which is seeking professional advice on options that may be available to the UNA. Mr. Beyer said the UNA board will discuss the HST issue at its December 11th meeting, and a recommendation for the board to consider will be brought forward from the finance and audit standing committee in the New Year. (For more info, visit www.myuna.ca.)
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
What are the Health Risks and Benefits to Cycling? Kay Teschke, a UBC professor of population and public health, answers questions posed by Jens von Bergmann, a Chancellor Place resident, on both the health benefits of cycling and cycling safety In the last two issues of the Campus Resident, there was a back and forth about mandatory helmet laws. First Thomas Beyer was arguing that there should be good reasons to take away individual freedoms, and that the mandatory helmet law lacks such good reasons. Then James
Cook contested that there are indeed good reasons for the helmet law. Rather than adding my personal opinion to this, I thought it would be best to pose this question to an expert. We are fortunate to live on UBC campus and to have Professor Kay Teschke, a well respected public health scientist that researches cycling safety. Trying to distill the arguments brought forward, here are my questions and Professor Teschke’s responses: (1) Cycling is often described as a “high risk activity”. What are the health risks and benefits to cycling? The risks of cycling are mainly personal injury risks, though cycling on a high traffic street can also increase a cyclist’s exposure to air pollution, compared to driving or riding a bus on the same street.
Chancellor Place resident Jens von Bergmann
The personal benefits of cycling accrue mainly because of the physical activity it entails, including lower risks of heart disease, cancer, diabetes. There are also societal benefits because of the lower levels of noise and air pollution, resulting in reduced respiratory disease and reduced carbon load (impacting global climate change). A number of studies have weighed the risks and benefits of cycling and found the health benefits to greatly outweigh the risks, in terms of years of life lost (by 9- to 96-fold). We recently summarized some of these issues in the new UBC Medical Journal: www.ubcmj.com/pdf/ ubcmj_3_2_2012_6-11.pdf 2) How do the following groups’ burden on a public health care system compare: a) cyclists that wear a helmet, b) cyclists that don’t wear a helmet, c) non-cyclists. Beyond the information above about the great benefits to health of cycling, it might be of interest simply to compare injury risks of various modes of transportation. We recently estimated fatality and injury risk for three modes of transportation in British Columbia. We used ICBC data, so mountain biking is not included (it is a very different sport). In the interests of simplicity, here I’ve listed the fatality risks per trip. I have also added an estimate for cyclists without a helmet law, and United States data for transit bus travel and motor cycle travel, since data from BC wouldn’t allow that calculation. US numbers are almost identical for the three travel modes that we can compare. • Transit bus travellers (US): 0.4 per 100 million person-trips • Drivers and passengers (BC): 10 per 100 million person-trips • Pedestrians (BC): 15 per 100 million person-trips • Cyclists (BC with helmet law): 14 per 100 million person-trips • Cyclists (BC without helmet law): 19 per 100 million person-trips • Motorcyclists (US): 537 per 100 million person-trips If distance traveled is used as the denominator, the fatality risk of driving is lower still in comparison to cycling, but the risk for walking is higher than cycling (even without a helmet law). Motorcycle use has much higher fatality risk than any other travel mode, by over an order of magnitude. Similarly, transit use is by far the safest mode, also by more than an order of magnitude. 3) What does public health research say about the advantages and disadvantages of a mandatory helmet law? This is a difficult question to answer.
UBC professor Kay Teschke The potential benefits of a helmet law are illustrated in the above fatality risk estimates: somewhat lower risk. (One could argue that the same benefits would accrue with a mandatory helmet law for pedestrians or even drivers!) The difficulty is estimating the potential risks of a helmet law. There are a number of potential downsides: 1. Helmets may discourage some individuals from cycling, e.g., because they add to heat load during riding, mess hairdos, are inconvenient to carry, cost money. Estimating whether this actually happens when helmet laws are introduced is difficult. Data from Australia show reductions in cycling after implementing a law (heat may be a big issue there). In Canada, there is some data showing no change in cycling after legislation is introduced and other data showing reductions in cycling. 2. Helmet laws and observations of cyclists wearing helmets may make cycling appear to be an especially risky mode of transportation even though it is actually very healthy. This may discourage people from taking up cycling. 3. Helmet laws may make policy makers complacent about improving cycling infrastructure and road conditions. Improved cycling conditions have dual benefits. They prevent crashes from occurring in the first place (preventing injuries of all types, instead of mitigating head injuries once a crash has taken place). Improved cycling infrastructure has also been shown to increase cycling, something that helmet legislation has not done. Small reductions in cycling have been shown to have large public health costs, and the reverse is also true, small increases in cycling have large public health benefits. Policies directed at increasing cycling, such as separated bike lanes, reduced speed limits on residential streets, and bike share systems have substantial benefits to public health.
UNA Agrees to Fund Lease Research The UNA has agreed to allocate up to $15,000 to a ‘Leasehold Property Value’ project to engage the assistance of two researchers who will be supervised by former UNA chair Jim Taylor on issues related to legal and real estate. Mr. Taylor, a lawyer, approached the UNA, indicating he is prepared to lead a research project on strategies that UNA owners, the UNA and UBC can adopt to maintain leasehold property values. He would volunteer his time, but would require some research assistance on legal
and real estate issues. UBC will also be approached to contribute an equal amount towards this project. Richard Alexander, UNA chair, said, “It is in the interest of the UNA, owners and the university that leasehold property values remain high. “The quality of the lease for UNA properties is considered very good. However there can be a significant impact on the value of the lease if leases in surrounding areas are not as good.” See story on Page 4 in English or Chinese.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
page 3 Published by: University Neighbourhoods Association #202-5923 Berton Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6S OB3
Editorial Page Letter to the Editor UNA Committee meetings should be open to public, media UNA resident-directors were elected to serve the general public by making decisions on our behalf. While individual residents may disagree with a particular decision made by the committee or the position of certain director(s) regarding specific issues, peo-
ple generally recognize that the directors make decisions on behalf of the whole community—as opposed to on behalf of particular individuals or interest groups. I therefore do not see why any director should have any concern about speaking unreservedly during any committee meeting that is open to the public, unless he or she is worried about offending particular individuals or groups. In reality, we cannot possibly please everybody, and certainly our residentdirectors—whose mission is to serve our
UNA community—cannot please everybody all of the time. We need and want directors with courage and fortitude to stand by and act upon what they believe in, with or without public presence and even in spite of opposition. UNA committee meetings open to the public and media should be a default and not something they even had to vote on. Chin Sun, Hawthorn Place resident
Rapid Transit along Broadway Only to Arbutus is not Good Enough By Thomas Beyer, Chancellor Place resident The proposal by Mayor Gregor Robertson of Vancouver to run a rapid transit line along the busy Broadway transportation corridor only to Arbutus is not good enough. It defeats the point of getting people bound for UBC out of their cars, and it does not address the long line-ups for students in the morning or evening; nor the pollution caused by diesel spewing busses up a lengthy hill; nor the noise; nor will it be beneficial for attracting more capital, jobs, market housing and affordable housing along the lesser dense communities west of Arbutus. Cost-effective solutions—below and/ or above ground—in less dense neighborhoods such as west of Arbutus can be engineered. Such solutions have been built in Asian or European cities. I am also looking to further debate on funding options or efficiencies in delivery of transit services as Vancouver grows almost 50% in the next few decades and UBC resident area over 100%! Revenue sources could include: bonds, provincial grants, federal grants, modestly higher user fees (for roads, transit, bridges or tunnels) and/or modestly higher taxes on near-by properties, bikes, cars, gasoline, carbon, electricity bills, water bills, development, labour, tuitions, goods & services, or capital. I am not suggesting a free ride paid for only by others (like the “feds” or the province only). All revenue sources have to be looked at – as well as operating efficiencies. One such revenue option is in setting taxation level for things less desired, such as car use where other options exist. No one likes higher taxes, but driving a car is far too cheap in Vancouver. Why not be bold, and raise gasoline taxes $1 over 10 years – 10 cents a year! This is just one of
several vehicles (no pun intended) to raise sustainable funding for TransLink (or whatever agency might exist in 10 years to run public transit in the Metro Vancouver area). Why should UBC receive a rail link with priority? Here are some reasons: 1) Public transport to and from UBC is a major nuisance, given the volume and slow speed of wobbly buses transporting tens of thousands every day. Missing is a rapid transit rail link all the way. The buses to and from UBC are frequently overcrowded in the mornings and afternoons during the school year, despite a frequency of every five to seven minutes. Wait times of over three buses are not uncommon just to get a connection from the SkyTrain at Commercial and Broadway in the morning. The bus is often full when connecting at the Canada-line on Broadway with wait-times occasionally over four to five buses. The amount of diesel fumes is immense. The noise of buses is unbearable. Not exactly in keeping with greenhouse gas targets, pollution levels or a green image Vancouver wants to portray – let alone customer inconvenience and congestion. 2) There are approx. 150,000 trips a day, or over 40,000,000 trips a year, to or from the UBC area, and the time spent taking them would be vastly reduced with faster rail-based technology. Assuming a railbased trip to or from UBC takes 30 minutes less than a bus trip, and further assuming the average rider earns $14/hour, this would yield a societal benefit of over a quarter billion dollars annually--more if one used a higher hourly wage rate. Thus, an investment of $3B to build the line all the way to UBC would yield over 6% annually to society--which makes good monetary sense. 3) UBC is the largest employer in the lower mainland, with over 10,000 employees, many of whom commute. 4) There are approx. 16,000 residents in the UBC area (about 50% students and
50% non-students) who have deep ties into the wider GVRD area or work away from UBC Campus. 5) The number of UBC area residents is expected to double in the next 10-15 years due to the recently adopted UBC Campus & Community Neighbourhood Plan which has densified UBC land dramatically. 6) Affordable housing is a major issue for students and lower-paid employees such as cleaners, food servers, entry level employees, lab technicians, nurses, etc. Thus, a fast, environmentally friendly rapid transit line is vital for the sustainable growth of the Vancouver metroplex, with a tie-in into the Canada line and the Skytrain, for faster access, to reduce pollution, to make affordable housing accessible for UBC based employees or students and to make transportation more sustainable in GVRD incl. UBC area. Most UBC residents, employees and students look forward to rapid transit, and broadly support it. Far more people like myself with frequent need to go to Vancouver would use a railway, rather than a bus or a car, if one were available. A bike trip is too far, it is too cold in the winter and it is hilly. Cars are the only realistic alternative, as indicated by the high usage or the recent pickup by Car2Go. The time to act is now. The time to engage all stakeholders is now. Many revenue sources exist on all levels that can be tapped into to bring green, fast, efficient transit services to UBC residents, students and employees! But funding initiatives start at the provincial level since Metro Vancouver represents roughly half the entire BC population. Political leadership is required! Thomas Beyer is a director of the University Neighbourhoods Association. Views expressed here are his own and not necessarily those of the UNA.
Editor & Business Manager John Tompkins 604.827.3502 JTompkins@myuna.ca
Letter to the Editor “...health benefits of cycling outweigh risks...” Mr. Cook, a Hawthorn Place resident, writes in the Nov 16, 2012 issue of Campus Resident on the subject of bicycles and helmets. His position is that anyone who rides a bike helmet-less should pay for any health consequences of that decision. I would agree with Mr. Cook, if the following proviso were in place: all citizens should be penalized or rewarded for lifestyle decisions that have health cost implications. And in this case, it is the choice between active or sedentary transportation. If this proviso were in place, cyclists would be rewarded handsomely because the health benefits of cycling outweigh the risks by a factor of somewhere between 6:1 and 20:1 – with or without a helmet. To achieve these benefits, it is only necessary to substitute a bike trip for a car trip on a few routine errands a week. On the other hand, those that choose exclusively sedentary, inactive transportation should be penalized, using Mr. Cook’s argument. Sedentary choices contribute to risk of developing chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression and so on. Active choices reduce the risk. There is ample literature on this subject in the journal article referenced below (*), and in the popular press. And make no mistake, these are wide-spread and costly illnesses. As to cycling, health and the use of helmets, here are my thoughts. Helmets are good: in a few types of crash, they may help prevent injury. Mandatory helmet laws are bad: they discourage cycling, which reduces the health benefit to society, among many other benefits There are much better ways than helmet laws to keep cyclists safe and help increase the cost-saving health benefits of active transportation by bicycle. K. E. Ohrn Vancouver, BC (*) “Bicycling: Health Risk or Benefit”, UBC Medical Journal, Vol 3, Issue 2, March 2012, page 6:
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 DECEMBER 17, 2012
How to Enhance the Value of our Leases (First of a Series) By Jim Taylor, Hampton Place resident, Vancouver lawyer and former UNA chair I intend to write a series of articles examining the question of the value of the leaseholds which we “own” (I use the word own throughout) in the UNA neighbourhoods (which I refer to as “Neighbourhoods”). My goal is to keep each article as short as possible (although I can see, looking ahead, that some things will take a while to explain). I start at the most elementary level. There are various types of home “ownership”. From now on I will not put ownership in quotation marks. Own is the word we all use to describe the leasehold interest we have in our residences (our strata lots). While “own” is not technically correct (we do not own the strata lot on which our residence is situated we only have a lease of the strata lot) I think it leads to less confusion if I use the words own and ownership. In any event, there are various interests one can have in land. For our purposes we need to understand two. A person can have a fee simple interest in land. A feel simple interest in land means that you own the land for all time until you sell it. When you sell it you sell the same interest – an interest in that land for all time. Of course, it is not so simple as that. There are certain charges that you must pay in order to continue to own the land (property taxes, school taxes, etc.). You may, by contract, give some other person an interest in your land (such as a mortgage) and in that case you will have to abide by the terms of the interest you have given (in the case of the mortgage by paying it) or the land will be taken from you. If you do not pay debts that you owe these debts can be registered against your land and, ultimately, if you do not pay them the land can be taken from you in order to pay the debts. But these are essentially quibbles. It is enough to know that if you own the fee simple in land you own it for all time and can sell your interest to another for all time. The other interest we have to understand is a leasehold interest. This is the inter-
Chinese translation of story on this page by Jim Taylor
est that we in the Neighbourhoods have. Under our leasehold interest we have a right to exclusive possession of (own) the land for a period of time. In each of the developments in the Neighbourhoods the initial period of time on our leases has been 99 years from the start of the particular development. As time goes by the remaining period of the leasehold interest reduces year by year. As with a fee simple interest, your leasehold interest also requires you to pay taxes, etc., pay any contractual amounts that you agree to pay (a mortgage, etc.) and exposes your leasehold interest to action on the part of creditors if you do not pay your debts. When you sell your leasehold interest what you sell is the remaining years that you have on the lease. So if one buys a fee simple interest in land it is going to be worth more (how much more we will consider in further articles) than if one buys a leasehold interest. The one interest means that you own the land forever. The other interest means that you own the land for a stipulated period of time. A series of questions arise. I give some examples. How can we as residents in the Neighbourhoods conduct ourselves, what benefits can we gain, what agreements can we make, what relationship can we create, etc. so that our leasehold interest is worth as close as possible to what a fee simple interest would be? How can our landlord (UBC) help? Can we as residents in the Neighbourhoods do anything to enhance the value of our interest (or “residences”)? What data should we look at? What lessons are there for us? What enhances or diminishes leasehold value? Is there anything that we can do to offset or address the issues that might cause a reduction in our leasehold interest? These questions and more, are ones that I hope to examine over the next several articles. I am doing this as a volunteer and will be unpaid but to do a good job of this I need consulting help - a property and valuation expert and someone to identify, obtain (so I can analyze them) other forms of leases in the Lower Mainland that are available by using various indices beyond my skills. The UNA and UBC (Properties) have agreed to jointly fund the cost of this consulting work.
Resident Receives Medal for Leading Development of Campus Neighbourhoods Jim Taylor, founding chair of the University Neighbourhoods Association, is presented Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal; former UBC resident Dianne Ledingham is also among eight from local constituencies to be honored. In a ceremony on campus December 13th, Premier Christy Clark presented campus resident Jim Taylor with a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for his work in promoting the development of a residential community at UBC. “Jim Taylor is the committed leader and
volunteer who made it possible for the University Town on the UBC campus to flourish into a diverse, sustainable and vibrant community,” Premier Clark said. “In the early 1980s, he inspired fellow campus residents to work together by organizing community events and raising funds to finance neighbouhrood projects.” The British Columbia premier then pointed to the role of Mr. Taylor in the history of the University Neighbourhoods Association. “In 2002, Jim spearheaded the creation of the UNA that now delivers municipallike services to more than 8,000 residents.” The premier said, “Jim Taylor continues to set community initiatives that integrate new residents into the community and bring residents closer together with students and the UBC administration.”
Premier Clark also presented former campus resident Dianne Ledingham with a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal. “Dianne Ledingham is a tireless community volunteer,” the premier said. “She has been active in the world of politics, serving as Vancouver Park Board commissioner and chair of the City of Vancouver cultural diversity committee. “Recently, Dianne served as chair of the Save the UBC Farm Campaign. The Farm plays an important role in not only providing fresh local produce, but also as a hub for community and service learning”. As MLA for Vancouver-Point Grey, Premier Clark had the opportunity to choose four recipients of the medal from her constituency. Beside Mr. Taylor and Ms Ledingham, she chose Ray Green (known for his community spirit and his role in fetching an
annual fireworks display to the shores of English Bay, and Catherine Leach, executive director of Kitsilano Neighbourhood House. As MLA for Vancouver-Quilchena, Colin Hanson also had the opportunity to choose four medal recipients. Mr. Hanson chose Len Brown (for multiple volunteer services), Don Currie (active in minor league hockey and little league baseball), Buz Knott (also for multiple volunteer services), and Marvin J. Westwood, a UBC professor in the counseling psychology program. The commemorative medal was created to mark the 2012 celebrations of the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the Throne as Queen of Canada.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
Why it is hard to Celebrate Christmas Seriously By Qiuning Wang, The Old Barn staff Time passes so quickly, it is Christmas again. As a Chinese poet so beautifully says, time like a handful of sand flows away from your fingers. Yes, time does flow away from our fingers in this digital era: this is my fifth Christmas since moving to Canada. Five years, a small step for a naive child, but when you have grey hair and wrinkles, naive or not, it is a giant leap, you’ve got to be serious. So I have decided to celebrate this Christmas seriously. To start, I think developing a meaningful to-do-list in compliance with local practice is important. What do Canadians do for Christmas? As I am trying to list things in order, Christmas shopping jumped up in my mind abruptly. I went to the Circle Craft in November, I thought it was about arts and crafts, it was, but it was about Christmas shopping too. All those nicely-made cards, candles, soaps, ornaments, jewelry, glassware put spending in the happy disguise of a love for art. I have a passion for art, no doubt, but not bringing cash cooled me down quickly, and the over-spent summer vacation also rings the alarm at the back of my mind. As to the Christmas gifts for my children, luckily, I don’t need to worry too much. They have joined a Zero Waste Challenge, any additional wrapping material or boxes would jeopardize their chances of becoming champions, so I will not take that risk. We did celebrate Christmas before we moved here. I remember that in the year when my daughter was in Grade 2, instead of preparing her a gift, I decided to write her an inspirational letter in the name of Santa Claus and encourage her to get better marks in the coming year. My daughter was excited on the next morning when she found a letter from Santa Claus under her pillow. But when she returned from school in the afternoon, she was very disappointed by finding the fact, with great help of her classmates, that it was a fake letter from her mom. She asked me “How could you fake the letter so well?” Only then did I realize that Santa Clause didn’t work for children with her level of intelligence and I decided to trick her no longer. As the desire for Christmas shopping fades away, the second thing coming to the top is the Christmas tree. Yes, a real big Christmas tree - I have been thinking
about it for a long time. Imagine a green pyramid placed next to the fireplace, dispersing the smell of a forest, decorated with shining ornaments and happiness, and surrounded by the gift boxes with love and blessings, isn’t that wonderful? But when I realize that there won’t be any gifts this year, the lights start to dim. Plus I have to move out of my current space soon, there is no point to add another item that is emotionally hard to drop later on. So if there is no Christmas shopping and no Christmas tree, what else can I do? When hearing the 2012 American Music Awards announced the winners, I found the answer. Yes, Santa Claus is Coming to Town by Justin Bieber, his revolutionary singing (agree or not) did cheer us up in the grey and wet Christmas last year. Like many Canadians, I like to support local talent. The Langley Ukulele Ensemble, another example, who performed in the Christmas Concert at the Old Barn Community Centre last year, totally shook me with their small magic musical toys. It was my first time sitting in a concert with such an engaging manner. Sing-along was equally enjoyable. I was touched when seeing a little girl sitting on her grandpa’s lap and singing together with the crowd. After the concert, I asked myself: “Is there a song that I can sing both with my parents and my children? Or is there a song that I can sing with known and unknown Chinese folks?” The answer is a pitiful “no”. Not only is there an uncrossing distance from the red revolutionary songs, to Michael Jackson, and to One Direction, we simply have rare public occasions and appropriate songs to sing together. Now I am in a place with options, but not all my family members and my parents are with me yet, we can’t share a place and a moment completely. When we are here Christmas-ing, they are at work or in school back home, but when they are here for Lunar New Year, we are at work or in school, our calendars don’t match. I often feel myself, like an object flying into a new orbit, dragged by the gravity from the original planet, working extra hard to keep the balance, and I don’t even know how long it takes to finally move into that perfect smooth new circle. For the moment, I am still in the excitement of steering a curved and bumpy journey. Like I said at the beginning, I want to celebrate Christmas seriously, but it is not easy to do so.
Walk and Talk Club participants outside Pacific Spirit Park. Photo taken by Paulyn Lim
Walk and Talk ‘Experiment’ a Big Success By Ben Seghers, long-time local resident Back in August as I was thumbing through the Fall Recreational Program Guide for The Old Barn Community Centre, I noticed a new ‘Walk & Talk Club’ among the long list of activities. Mondays, 10 am - 11:30 AM, rain or shine. It was free, with a casual drop-in format and, “for people who would like to meet new friends and get active!” This seemed to suit two of my favourite activities - walking and talking - and since the walks would be on the extensive trail system of Pacific Spirit Park, this made it even better because for the past seven years I have been on the trails committee of the Pacific Spirit Park Society and know the system well. No need for a map! And as a biologist I’m also interested in the flora and fauna of the park. For the first walk of this ‘experiment’, the Community Centre staff was pleasantly surprised when 20 people turned up. I was the only man! Program Coordinator Stephanie Jameson led the first walk but explained that in the future we should find our own volunteer leaders from within the group. On the second Monday we had a leader named Sandy. Then on the third Monday, I made the fatal mistake of arriving about one minute late and as I approached the large waiting group, Qiuning Wang (Commu-
nity Engagement & Volunteer Coordinator) smiled and said, “We have voted you as our group leader!” And that was that - no escape! It quickly became apparent that there was demand for walking more than once per week and that’s where the Wesbrook Village Running Room came in and offered the same free drop-in sessions on Wednesdays at 10 AM, starting and ending in front of their store. Michelle Huang and I currently co-lead this group and there is much overlap between the Monday and Wednesday participants. Most of them live in Wesbrook Village, Hampton Place and Hawthorn Place. Recently we were joined by our first resident of Chancellor Place. One lady comes in from Kerrisdale. We walk at a brisk pace and usually cover 5 to 7 kms in the 90-minute session, taking the occasional break for a photo opportunity. Talk comes easily and many new friendships have already been formed. If I’m slacking off at the front I might hear a shout from the back (usually in Mandarin), “speed up!” Despite Vancouver’s reputation for constant rain in the fall and winter we have only used our umbrellas on two walks and ordinary running shoes seem to work just fine on the well-groomed trails. We are always happy to see new faces, so feel free to join us at 10 AM on Mondays (The Old Barn) and Wednesdays (Running Room).
page 6 BAND continued from Page 1. Mr. Easton said Colliers had designed the December 6th Open House to provide the public with background information on the project. In January, the second session would offer “follow up” to public comments arising from the first. At a date to be determined, the third phase of this pre-planning disclosure would see the Musqueam provide a draft plan of Block F development, prior to the final draft being delivered to the UEL administration for approval.
UEL continued from Page 1. “Once these steps have been taken, the information will be considered by the CAC and a decision made whether or not to proceed with a feasibility study,” Mr. Pears said. In an interview, Mr. Pears spoke in
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012 Mr. Grant said that under the terms of the Musqueam Reconciliation Agreement, the band received the land from the provincial government with ‘MF-1’ zoning, meaning that currently Block F could be developed only for multi-family housing. “We shall apply for a rezoning to multifamily housing and commercial development,” he said. The current zooming would also limit buildings on Block F being higher than four storeys—and the Musqueam also want this amended. The Musqueam band councillor de-
clined to be specific about proposed commercial development at the site, but said there might be some businesses in a village-like setting there. Others have speculated the Musqueam might build a high-rise hotel there to fit in with the University Golf Course which the band owns across University Boulevard, but Mr. Grant declined to join in the speculation. The display boards at the Open House also indicated a proposed rapid transit station at the Block F site. Numerous members of the Pacific Spirit Park community attended the four-hour
Open House. At least one of these members pointed out that the proposed development will destroy several trails running through the park, including the Ivan Mann Walk and Sword Fern Trail running north-south through the site. The provincial government dedicated the trail named after Ms. Mann—who died last year—for her determined work in helping create Pacific Spirit Regional Park. A reporter overheard one Open House attendee to say, “Iva would turn in her grave if she saw this.”
glowing terms about the prospect of the UEL community emerging as a Lower Mainland municipality in the same way former ‘unincorporated areas’ such as Anmore, Belcarra and Bowen Island have emerged in recent years. “We have spoken with the mayors of Anmore and Belcarra and visited Lions
Bay and Bowen Island—all of them having incorporated in the last 20 years. “These Village municipalities range from quite small (in the hundreds) to Bowen Island, which has about 5,000 residents. “The UEL is perfectly suited for incorporation.”
Mr. Pears said that all four municipalities contacted by the CAC report being “very happy” with the move. He said their experience shows no big effect on taxes unless service levies are changed. The provincial government established the UEL in 1925. A ratepayers association set up in 1946 advised the government on UEL affairs until seven years ago, when an amended Official Community Plan brought in the more democratic and activist CAC. A new council gained office a year ago with Mr. Pears, a retired architect and business owner, elected chair and leading the push in the direction of incorporation. “I’ve got two years left to get this through,” he said, referring to the time between November, 2014 when the next CAC election will be held and November, 2011 when the last one was held. If the CAC determines the UEL community wishes to proceed down the road towards incorporation, with a feasibility study the next big step, it will do so in the wake of events in 1995 when a referendum was held on the proposed joint incorporation of the UEL and Hampton Place, which UBC had just then formed. While the UEL community of about 2,100 at the time voted firmly in favour of incorporation, the Hampton Place community of abut 1,200 voted strongly against it, and the referendum failed. Mr. Pears says, “Things have not got better since 1995”. He does not blame the local government office. “They do an excellent job of ‘maintenance’.” However, the government in Victoria has no interest in “social development” on the UEL, he says, and this will become even harder to bear as the UEL population rises to an expected 7,000 once the Musqueam Indian Band development of 22 acres of UEL south of University Boulevard is completed (see story on Page 1). “The UEL completely lacks any sort of community facilities or support for the social side of community development. “This denial of responsibility for the promotion of a healthy community is one of the worst parts of the current system.” Mr. Pears presents a long list of problems with the current status of the UEL as a sort of ‘colony’ of the province. Many of them have to do with the lack of local control. “We cannot directly control our own money. Victoria writes—literally—the cheques. “All important issues must be referred to Victoria.” Mr. Pears expressed himself much pleased with the result of a straw poll at the recent annual community gathering in the UEL. “There were 60 residents in attendance, and all but six (who either voted against or abstained from voting) voted in favour—that’s 90% support.”
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
Planning Proceeds on Expanded Route for Shuttle Bus Service at UBC Hampton Place shuttle bus route (C22) to be discontinued; other UBC route (C20) to be expanded to bring service to Wesbrook Place A revamped shuttle bus service at UBC would—if approved in the spring—see the start of buses running into Wesbrook Place in the fall of 2013 and the end of buses running into Hampton Place at the same time. TransLink, which operates two shuttle buses at UBC—the C20 and C22—has begun drafting plans to expand the C20 route to include stops in Wesbrook Place and eliminate the C22 route, which includes stops in Hampton Place. The proposed changes come after five years of TransLink operating shuttles on both C20 and C22 routes at a financial loss. As part of the planning process, TransLink has released figures showing how poorly the two routes have performed since they were opened—the C22 in particular. Running one way every half-hour between 2:30 PM and 8:30 PM, the 24-seater shuttle bus on the C22 route from behind the Student Union Building (SUB) at the main entrance to campus to Hampton Place and then the marriedstudents neighbourhoud west of Acadia Road, averages only two passengers—or only 8% of capacity in comparison with TransLink buses as a whole in the Metro Vancouver region which run at 88% capacity. Running one way every half-hour between 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM, the 24-seater shuttle bus on the C20 route averages eight passengers—or 27% of capacity. In an interview at a UBC Open House on proposed changes to the campus shuttle
Proposed new shuttle bus routes at UBC--two alternatives under consideration bus routes on November 26th, Adam Hyslop, a transportation planner with TransLink, said, “We have found that the C22 shuttle has among the lowest ridership in the Metro Vancouver region, ranking 197 out of all 221 regional transit routes.” In response to low ridership, UBC and TransLink propose to establish an expanded C20 route running in both directions (see diagram above of expanded route). Adam Cooper, a transportation planner with UBC, said the new proposed route would offer a simple and direct service. “The entire two-way loop of the proposed route would take approximately 23 minutes to complete in either direction,” he said. “This simplified and direct service results in a convenient shuttle route that would be accessible and easy to understand for all users.” The TransLink and UBC planners offer the following ‘nutshell’ critique of the proposed expanded C20 route: (1) more frequent and expanded hours later into the evening to better serve student residences and residential neighbourhoods. (2) a higher frequency transit service connecting highly populated areas and activity areas. (3) a consistent and simplified schedule with a bus departing in one direction or the other every 15 minutes.
Proposed Amendment of Shuttle Bus Route Alarms Hospice Group Hospice on campus needs bus stop beside it, says Order of St. John; visitors to hospice could be discouraged without use of adjacent bus stop The hospice on campus needs a bus stop beside it, says its developer, The Order of St. John Palliative Care Foundation. The hospice—under construction beside the Promontory apartment building in mid-campus—stands beside a C20 shuttle bus stop. However, the possibility has arisen that by the time construction is complete, the bus stop will have gone—made obsolete by a change in UBC shuttle bus routes. The Order of St. John has beseeched UBC to consider revamping its shuttle bus service in such a way as to not allow loss of the bus stop. In a letter to UBC campus and community planning, Peter Hebb, public communications director for the Order of St. John, says, “We write with great dismay that the necessary bus stop location at the Hospice would be swept out from under us if the current routing is changed to one of the proposed routes.” Mr. Hebb refers to one of two alternative routes UBC has proposed for an expanded C20 route, Alternatives A and B). (See diagram) “Your suggested Alternative A would bypass the Hospice entirely forcing the staff, Medical Faculty and the elderly visitors to undertake a most difficult walk of several hundred meters each way. “Part of the Hospice activities will be to use the UBC Botanical Gardens, which is to the east of Stadium Road. Those visitors who come to walk with Hospice residents in the grounds of the Gardens, and who would then have to walk 3 or 4 blocks further after the visit to find a bus home, could be seriously discouraged
from coming at all.” The Order of St. John is constructing St. John Hospice on Stadium Road just east of the round-about at its intersection with West Mall. When selecting the site from among others offered to the Order by the UBC administration, Mr. Hebb says its location on a bus route was a crucial consideration. He writes, “The adjacent bus stop was mentioned as a feature of the Hospice in all our fundraising efforts ($5 million), and frequently during the public process. On-site parking is limited in that area, and we expect many of the Hospice staff, the UBC Medical Faculty members and medical students, and a number of visitors (many of whom will be elderly) will arrive by Translink bus. “Your Alternative B would pass right beside the Hospice, and one assumes that the existing preferred bus stop would be used. Should those making this decision want to inject a compromise that would satisfy our strong objections to Alternative A, one solution would be to extend the routing of Alternative A to go eastwards (for both directions) a few hundred meters to the round-about at Stadium Road, to access the existing bus stop by the Hospice enabling additional service to the Botanical Garden and the Promontory, and then double back to Thunderbird Blvd before heading eastward up the hill and past the Old Barn. “Such a loop, when reviewed on a plan, would look similar to the loop used now on Student Union Boulevard, and would add only one minute to the driving time around each circuit. To allow 14 minutes per hour of driver rest time is out of all proportion to other routes serviced by Translink; 12 minutes rest as per our proposal would seem more than adequate if the eastern round-about is looped as suggested. “We offer this constructive alternative, as our donors, volunteers, and all associated with the project are already seriously concerned.”
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
UNA Community News Sustainability Corner This Holiday Season, Make Memories, not Garbage By Ralph Wells, UNA Sustainability Manager For those following my column, you know that a number of our local families have committed to the UNA Community Zero Waste Challenge. We are thirteen families in all (yes, yours truly and family have signed up), and we have been faithfully weighing our garbage and recycling. One of the things that makes the UNA Challenge unique is our decision to include the holiday season during the challenge period (which completes at the
Residents of Hawthorn Green take on the UNA Community Zero Waste Challenge.
end of January). At a recent get together we discussed ways to reduce waste, and not surprisingly much of the conversation focused on the coming holidays. I thought sharing some of that conversation would be a great focus for my holiday season column. Peter Cech of Metro Vancouver attended our social, and spoke about Metro Vancouver’s holiday “Make Memories, not Garbage” campaign. The campaign focuses on the giving experiences instead of things, and Peter pointed out that research has shown that objects tend to produce pleasure mostly at the time of purchase, whereas memories produce almost as much pleasure as original experiences – truly the gift that keeps on giving. Some examples include giving tickets to a show or lessons, or a gift certificate for a dinner out. The campaign also focuses on gifts that last (such as sporting equipment that also support a healthy activity), buying locally, “low waste – but in good taste” decorating, and food. There are many Christmas fairs where you can buy gifts from local artisans (and avoid packaging), and you can make homemade decorations (such as a wreath made from fallen evergreen branches from our local parks). Christmas baking in reusable gift tins is another great choice. To
avoid food waste, sending leftovers home in reusable containers – and eating them yourselves (a big part of holiday tradition, I think!). You can find out more at www.metrovancouver.org/Christmas. You might be surprised to know that a cut tree can be a sustainable choice, since they are often locally grown and the new trees that replace them will sequester green house gases (a video on the Metro Vancouver website explains that it could take 20 years of use for a manufactured tree to make up for environmental costs of manufacture and transportation). If you use a cut tree be sure to take it to the UBC Botanical Gardens for chipping by donation, so that your tree becomes a locally used landscaping resource instead of waste. Consider using a live tree service for your Christmas tree. Evergrow Christmas Trees (evergrowchristmastrees.ca) is a local business started by UBC students that will deliver a tree to you and then pick it up and ensure that it’s planted or kept live for use next year (they’re sold out this year, but it’s never too soon to start planning ahead!). LED Christmas lights are highly energy efficient, attractive, long lasting and durable, making them a very sustainable and cost effective choice. On the topic of electronics, consider giving recharge-
able batteries along with your electronic gift (which will reduce waste, and save a great deal of money). As well, new powerbars can ensure your device is truly off instead of drawing standby power. Finally, be sure to use the UNA e-waste program to ensure proper recycling of your old device (find out more at www.myuna. ca/service/recycling). However you choose to prepare for the holidays, I hope everyone has a happy (and sustainable) holiday season! Be sure to watch my next column for more stories from our Zero Waste Challenge, including how we managed the Challenge over the holiday season. For any questions or comments on these or other sustainability topics please feel free to contact me at email@example.com or 604.822.3263.
Correction Eliot Escalona attends Lord Byng Secondary School, not Point Grey Secondary School as we reported incorrectly in the ‘Voice of Youth’ Column on page 9 in November’s issue.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
Voice Of Campus Youth Let’s Cook Club Convenes With Tasty Results By Chae Young Shin, UBC Transition Program, First Year I must admit the first time I heard about this Let’s Cook Club, I did not think that it was a unique endeavour—having heard about numerous community cooking classes previously. However, when learning only a few people had organized all three Cooking Club events, I was amazed at their ability for organizing. They had managed to locate a neat and homelike cooking space, and the recipes they prepared were simply delicious. Although the people invited to cook were not professionals, with some demonstrating their cooking for only the first
time, they did a remarkable job and they deserve hearty thanks for all that they did. The first cooking class on October 25th turned out to be a great success. People from a variety of cultural and ethic backgrounds attended, while the food cooked was Asian. Our first cook was Florence Luo, who chairs the UNA multicultural committee, and Ms Luo prepared some easy-to-cook Chinese tofu recipes. Everyone learned from her quickly. Our second chef in this class was KamaludinBahadin, who prepared Singaporean lobster. It was also a quick and easy recipe to follow, and the result was tasty. The second cooking class was also a success, more so because participants brought dishes to be eaten with the dish prepared at the class. This featured dish
was smoked salmon pasta, but not done in the conventional sense. The ‘pasta’ was replaced with Kale leaves, making the dish much healthier than before. The dish was prepared by Charles Menzies, a professor at UBC, and his friendly way of explaining the recipe made the class very enjoyable. The last cooking class was taught by two Korean chefs, Eustina and Jiin, who prepared Kimchi, Seafood pancake, and Jap Chae. Their efficient way of cooking impressed those who attended, and so did the flavour of the dishes. Like the second class, participants also brought dishes to be shared with everyone. All in all, the cooking class was a great success in both providing locals with ideas for recipes, and in helping everyone
become acquainted with the members of the community. It was definitely a great opportunity to meet new people.
A Seafood Pancake cooked during the Let’s Cook workshop
My First Volunteer Experience with the Let’s Cook Club By Della Chen, Grade 10 student, U-Hill Secondary School I am a newcomer from China. I have been in Vancouver only three months. To me, the best way to get to know the city is to participate in social activities. I thought that doing some volunteer jobs would be helpful for me, and so I signed up as an
Old Barn Community Center volunteer. Then, I got my first volunteer job. It was with the Let’s Cook Club, organized by the University Neighbourhoods Association’s multicultural committee. I was excited and wondered what volunteering would be like. After those in the class became familiar with each other, the chef started cooking. My job responsibilities were set-up and take down, taking photos of the event,
posting online information, and writing an article about the workshop. I took photos of each step in the cooking and learning process. For volunteers, the Let’s Cook Club is a good place to volunteer because you can really enjoy yourself there while being useful. The Let’s Cook Club allows you the chance to make friends, learn cooking skills and have fun. This is my first volunteer job and I
learned a lot, and I am grateful to the Club for giving me such a good opportunity to volunteer. I believe that the Let’s Cook Club will improve relationships between neighbours. The Let’s Cook Club is really a great club that brings everyone together to cook and share the diverse culinary traditions in our community. This first volunteer experience was really important to me.
UNA Agrees to Help Fund Playground in Acadia Park The UNA has agreed to contribute $12,500 towards the $75,000 cost of building a playground for children in UBC married students’ corner of campus called Acadia Park. The funds will come from the community sponsorship allocation in the UNA operating budget. The UNA will also request that UBC support a matching contribution through UBC Properties Trust. Well known campus resident Jim Taylor, who is leading a fundraising project to raise the approximately $75,000 to purchase and install playground equipment in the UBC student family neighbourhood, approached the UNA with the funding request.
Mr. Taylor reported he had raised $50,000 prior to his petition to the board. Richard Alexander, UNA chair, said, “The UNA has been a strong supporter of projects geared towards UBC students. The UNA has contributed funding to Alma Mater Society projects and is a contributor towards the UTown@UBC projects geared towards the university student community. “The UNA has not had the opportunity in the past to engage the married students or their families to the same degree. A contribution towards the Acadia Park Play Equipment Project would be an excellent opportunity to show support for the many married students and their families.”
Board Backs Plan to Post Agendas of Closed Committee Meetings The UNA board of directors has accepted the recommendation of its governance standing committee to post the agendas of the operations & sustainability and governance standing committees on the UNA website prior to meetings and invite resi-
dents to submit comments by email to the committee on agenda items of interest to them. The meetings, however, will remain closed to the public and the media.
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
***Arts Around the Neighbourhood*** Claire Robson... Noel Coward... Jericho Arts Centre.... If you attended the Little Sisters Books shop at 1238 Davie Street on December 6th, you would have noted campus personality Claire Robson celebrating the publication of her new book Writing for Change. Claire, a founding member of the Organization of University Residents (OUR), read a little from her book at the literary event, which was hosted by the changemakers at Little Sisters, widely known for serving the adult, (gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender) communities. At the book launch, Claire read “just the fun parts”, she said. Reviewing Writing for Change, one literary critic said, “Claire Robson...offers her readers a master class in writing.” Another said, “We have in this book a startling story of learning and with a writer’s flair.” Her publisher offered, “... the book’s appeal is not limited to those studying the experience and voices of people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transsexual, but to any marginalized population.” Recently, the OUR co-founder, performed a note-worthy community service, by facilitating a workshop about such community issues as housing devel-
opment and population density on campus for residents called Listen In. Previously in her literary career, Claire penned a memoir, Love in Good Time, published by Michigan State University Press in fall 2003, The British-born writer and editor—who has run writers’ retreats and facilitated writers’ groups for the last ten years.—has also begun work on a third book, Notes from the Road – How to Plan a Successful Book Tour. *** Campus residents continue to support stage plays at the Jericho Arts Centre (JAC) in West Point Grey, and in recent weeks, they have enjoyed the unprecedented opportunity to do so at Sunday afternoon matinees as well as evenings through the week. United Players, which is the resident theatrical group at JAC, began adding matinees to its season of plays during the run of Present Laughter by Noel Coward, November 9-December 2. This terrific production—Adam Henderson, director— played to sold-out audiences throughout. Next up for United Players is Jan 25 Feb 17 - HECUBA by Nicholas Kilmer from Euripides; Mar 29 - Apr 21 - THE PRINCE’S PLAY by Tony Harrison from Victor Hugo; and June 7 - 30 - WE ARE THREE SISTERS by Blake Morrison. Book now and give someone the tickets for these three plays as a Christmas present. United Players Artistic Director, Andrée Karas, who has been the driv-
ing force behind the “little theatre that could” for the past thirty-plus years, will be pleased to hear from you. *** Over the years, many campus residents have enjoyed performances at JAC, which is a 135-seat performance venue located off NW Marine Drive near Jericho Beach, and they have helped make it ‘a place that matters’. ‘Places That Matter’ is an initiative of the Vancouver Heritage Foundation to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Vancouver by recognizing 125 historic or heritage Places that matter throughout the city, and in 2011, the Jericho Arts Centre became a ‘place that mattered’ with a heritage plaque to this effect prominently placed on the building. JAC is operated by the Friends of Jericho Arts Centre Society, a non-profit society made up of its users and volunteers.
Claire Robson, a prominent member of the residential community on campus, is a successful writer
Jericho Arts Centre (JAC) in West Point Grey is a ‘place that matters’
Scene from upcoming presentation of Hecuba by United Players at the Jericho Arts Centre
Home of theatre in West Point Grey, JAC attracts many residents from campus
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
Biodiversity in your backyard Riders of the Storm By Karen Needham, Spencer Entomology Collection Curator, Beaty Biodiversity Museum Where do insects go in the winter? Unlike us, they cannot control their internal body temperature by adjusting their metabolic rate when the weather turns cold, so they have adapted with various strategies to survive at different life stages. There are two types of insect life cycles: Incomplete metamorphosis involves three stages: egg, nymph, and adult (examples: dragonflies and waterboatmen), whereas complete metamorphosis has four stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult (examples: butterflies and beetles). No matter which life cycle, there is overwintering in every life stage. Most insects overwinter in their egg stage. Insect eggs are extremely resistant to all kinds of abuse, including cold. Packaged within the egg is the developing embryo with all of the food and water it needs to make it to the next stage, so parental care is usually not necessary. Rather less common for overwintering is the nymphal or larval stage, but it is a necessity for insects, such as pond insects, with juvenile stages that last several years. When ponds freeze and feeding becomes impossible, these dwellers find safety and warmth by burrowing in the mud on the pond’s bottom, and live off of food re-
serves stored in their fat bodies. If they freeze in severe winter, the antifreeze in their blood helps them stay alive for months until spring thaw. Some terrestrial insects also burrow to overwinter. Beetle larvae hide deep in tree trunks or underground near plant roots. Social insects, such as bees and ants, have the luxury of resting in a temperature-controlled, self-constructed nest. The pupa is the second most common stage for overwintering. A sheltered location is preferred, since this stage is immobile and they cannot move later if the spot chosen is not ideal. Monarch butterflies, for instance, pupate close to the main stem of a plant, protected from the elements and out of sight of predators. Most insect pupae need to experience a cold shock before they will complete development into an adult, so if you find one, leave it where it is and remember the spot so that you can return in the spring to witness the miracle of metamorphosis. Least common is for insects to overwinter as adults, a stage that is generally very short with one purpose only – reproduction. When weather turns foul, some species head south for warmer climes, such as Monarch butterflies or dragonflies. In some wasps, all colony members except the queen die. The queen buries herself inside an old log or tree stump, where rotting vegetation provides warmth and protection, and returns in the spring to build a new nest and lay her already fertilized eggs.
At UBC, one of the best places to look for overwintering insects is inside a rotting stump in the Endowment Lands. Here you will find ants, termites, beetle grubs, and maybe even a wasp queen. Remember to cover them back up once you have had a look at them in their winter sanctuary. Insects are successful for a lot of reasons, but surely one of the most important is their ability to adapt to many different
environmental conditions by changing their body forms and behaviours - weather permitting of course! Upcoming in the Collections: The Beaty Biodiversity Museum is featuring Sea/Life, an exhibit of photographs by David Ellingsen, on through to February 3. Recycle your Christmas tree for a tree chipping fundraiser at UBC Botanical Garden: December 26 – January 9.
Fig. 1 A backswimmer (Notonecta kirbyi), which overwinters in its nymphal phase by burrowing into the mud of the pond. Photo credit: RA Cannings and MB Cooke
Local MP Makes Bid for Leadership of Federal Liberals Joyce Murray says she represents ‘the Canadian experience’; her goal is to emulate John Turner, former prime minister from Vancouver-Quadra Joyce Murray, Liberal Member of Parliament for Vancouver-Quadra, which includes UBC and the University Endowment Lands (UEL), launched her candidacy for leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada locally December 1st. “I’m happy to be home with friends today to announce my candidacy for Liberal leadership from the traditional grounds of the Musqueam nation. My vision for Canada is of a truly sustainable society that is socially, fiscally, and environmentally viable for generations to come. I am excited to embark on this journey from the same riding formerly represented by another Liberal leader and former Prime Minister, John Turner. With hard work, perseverance, and heart we can honour that legacy and rebuild the Liberal Party of Canada,” Ms. Murray said at the Jericho Sailing Club in West Point Grey. Ms. Murray, a former BC cabinet minister, mother of three, and co-owner of a successful reforestation company, said she represents ‘the Canadian experience’. “I have executive level experience both in the private and public sectors. I have sat around the cabinet table and had to make tough decisions that affect people’s lives, all while maintaining a successful family life for the past 35 years.” Ms. Murray outlined a number of poli-
cies she would champion as leader of the Liberal Party of Canada: “We need a ‘Made in Canada’ method of electing our representatives,” she said. “I will work with progressives to adopt a system of cooperation for the next election, and encourage a real conversation on electoral reform in the House of Commons.” According to Ms. Murray, “The Conservative government was elected with less than 40 per cent of votes cast. It does not represent the majority of Canadians and it certainly does not represent the majority of British Columbians.” The Vancouver-Quadra MP also said she wants to reform Canada’s cannabis laws and implement policies based on evidence and scientific facts. “We have to regulate and control it. Tax it. And generate revenue from it. The Prime Minister wants to put drug dealers in jail; I would put them out of business.” Ms. Murray noted that, “We need a leader who isn’t afraid to talk about difficult issues. I’m not afraid to have a conversation about carbon pricing—in fact, I welcome it. B.C. was brave enough to do it and it’s time for the rest Canada to join in. As a minister, I worked with the CEO’s of oil corporations. I got them on board in the past and I will work with them again to ensure they have the predictability they need to do their job.” “As a Westerner, successful entrepreneur, and a seasoned politician I believe that I have the requisite skills and the ideas our party needs to move forward with rebuilding the party and achieving electoral success. I look forward to sharing my vision for Canada with all Canadians in the coming months.”
THE CAMPUS RESIDENT DECEMBER 17, 2012
published monthly by the University Neighbourhoods Association