Development in Marpole has been booming and with that comes an increased rise in traffic.Along the three main intersections of Marpole which include: Oak and South Marine, Granville and South Marine, and Cambie and South Marine, heavy traffic has been taking over and residents are taking notice.
Pedestrians are fighting heavy traffic at one of the busiest intersections in south Vancouver but won’t see any improvement until after the major development project surrounding it is finished a year from now.
The MarineGateway development on SW Marine and Cambie, a major arterial routefor the South Cambie area, started construction in 2012 and since then the area has seen an increase in construction-related traffic on top of an already traffic congested intersection.
The South Marine Drive SkyTrain resides right beside the heavy construction and pedestrians have stated that the increased traffic and construction is threatening their safety. Continue reading →
Kitsilano, better known as just “Kits” to locals, became a popular area in the 60s as it developed into a hippie-centered hub. Today, the area still embodies some of the “hippie” characteristics of its past with its laid-back and easygoing feel.
Kitsilano is located on the southern shore of English Bay.
The community is unique in that it is a popular area to live in for all age groups – from the young university students to the older retirees.
Katherine Allen is a coordinator for Building Caring Communities, a foundation that focuses on creating community engagement within Metro Vancouver.
“Kits is made up of a lot of students, families and seniors, and it’s a very community-oriented neighbourhood,” said Allen. “When I am in Kits I would say that the common places that connect people are community centres and neighbourhood houses because they are residential.”
Kitsilano is also home to a large number of owner-operated businesses especially on the popular shopping street West 4th Avenue.
Jane McFadden is the executive director of the West 4th Ave Business Improvement Association and has a passion for supporting local businesses that call the street home.
According to McFadden high taxes are affecting business in the region tremendously.
“Individually if you talk to a number of businesses in the area you would hear them say that the taxes have gone up over the last ten years to the point where they can’t afford to be in business,” said McFadden. “If your rent is $2500 and your taxes are the same it makes it very hard to run a single-owner store.”
Members of the West 4th Ave Business Improvement Association have made it their mission to fight the skyrocketing price of taxes on businesses by supporting the Fair Tax Coalition, a group that works on behalf of business owners and tenants that feel like they are not getting a fair deal when it comes to the taxes they are paying.
“This is a large residential area and one of the more affluent areas, so we’re not seeing too many other crimes being committed such as drug-related issues,” said Morrison. “Property crime is the biggest issue in the area by far.”
Another big concern for the region is the future growth of the community which is going to be impacted by the approval of the Marpole Community Plan confirmed in April of this year – the effect being large-scale development of residential and commercial infrastructure.
Claudia Laroye, executive director of the Marpole Business Association is aware of how many challenges the local small businesses are facing today due in large part to the new developmental plans.
Dunbar/Southlands Dunbar is a neighbourhood north of the Fraser River that contains a mix of commercial and residential areas. From upper class homes to farmlands, the community is unique to say the least.
While in the past the neighbourhood was a relatively affordable place for families and working class people to buy homes, present day buyers and newer residents are most likely to be higher income earners, therefore creating an interesting mix of income levels within the population.
The abundant amount of large lots in the area has made the region a very desirable place for both homebuyers and commercial businesses.
Housing costs in Dunbar have skyrocketed in the past few years and residents are concerned with new developments moving in. Locals have emphasized the value they hold in keeping the neighbourhood as family-oriented as possible.
“In the 60s and 70s the neighbourhood of Dunbar was a family place where a schoolteacher and a garbage man could buy a house and raise a family,” said Weisman. “Today that is no longer the case.”