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Archive for ◊ Arts & Culture ◊

A new grant program supporting critical upgrades to preserve and protect buildings owned by Chinese Family Clan and Benevolent Societies has been approved by Vancouver City Council.

The Chinese Society Buildings Matching Grant Program will provide matching grants for maintenance and upgrades to buildings owned by the societies. Heritage buildings and those with affordable and social housing units will get priority consideration.

“This grant program recognizes the importance of maintaining these buildings as cultural anchors in our city, and shows how we can use new development to support and strengthen local heritage,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “The society buildings play a key role in preserving Chinatown’s unique heritage and identity, providing affordable housing, and contributing to the revitalization of Chinatown and the Downtown Eastside.”

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03 Jul, 2014

“Granville Island is one of Vancouver’s most treasured places, and one of the top two tourist destinations anywhere in Canada. It is a national landmark in the core of our city, and a vibrant hub for tourism, world-renowned arts and culture, local food, and small business. Local decision-making and operations are crucial to Granville Island’s revitalization and continued success.

“The City of Vancouver is strongly opposed to Granville Island being controlled by Port Metro Vancouver, and we made our position clear to the Port and the Government of Canada in discussions and correspondence over many months. As Mayor, I have worked to support a transfer or lease to the City, or the creation of an independent local authority with a mandate that is specific to Granville Island’s unique character.

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The City of Vancouver is rolling out a pilot program allowing farmers’ markets to accept British Columbia liquor vendors for the sale and sample of liquor in response to changes in the provincial liquor regulations.

The province has recently announced changes to its liquor regulations. The City is supporting the provincial changes with a pilot program so that citizen’s will have an opportunity to buy and sample locally-made spirits at designated farmers’ markets around the city this summer and fall season.

“The sampling and vending of craft beer, wine and liquor presents opportunities to support local products and the local economy,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “The City is pleased to announce that this one-season pilot will offer consumers more choices while adding diversity to our thriving farmers’ markets.”

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The City is set to invest a record $4.5 million in arts and culture in Mount Pleasant on Wednesday, as well as a start-up grant to launch a Vancouver version of Artscape, a non-profit dedicated to developing and building affordable creative space.

“These strategic investments demonstrate that City Council is committed to ensuring that new development benefits local neighbourhoods, and that we want to enable and expand new cultural spaces in Vancouver,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Both of these investments will support our creative economy and allow local artists to put down deeper roots in Vancouver.”

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Residents and visitors to Vancouver restaurants will have an extra hour to enjoy warm weather nights on an outdoor patio this upcoming season.

Establishments with good track records will once again be able to invite their patrons to enjoy Vancouver’s fresh air later into the evening. Expanding from its 2013 pilot program, the City has already approved 53 locations for extended patio hours starting now, through summer 2014.

“Patios are a big draw for residents and tourists alike, and help build a lively, vibrant street scape,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson. “With patio season upon us, I know many Vancouverites will enjoy the extra hour to socialize outdoors later into the night.”

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Better protection for renters, new community facilities, more parks and revitalized shopping areas: the Mayor and City Council voted today to approve a new Community Plan for Vancouver’s West End.

The new West End Community Plan, developed over a consultation period of more than 20 months that included 107 engagement events, outlines how growth in the West End will be managed over the next 30 years. Key elements of the plan include:

  • Protection of existing rental housing, in a neighbourhood where over 80% of households rent;
  • Investing roughly $600 million in new and upgraded community amenities over the next 30 years, including more parks, affordable housing, child care, and a new community centre and library;
  • A focus on revitalizing commercial areas on Robson, Denman and in Davie Village by including more patios and public spaces, wider sidewalks, and strengthening Davie Village as a hub for the LGBTQ community

“The West End is one of Vancouver’s most unique and celebrated neighbourhoods,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “This plan first and foremost protects what makes the West End great, and lays out a vision for building on its strengths. Affordable housing, vibrant shopping areas, walkable neighbourhoods that work for people young and old – the new West End plan focuses on the priorities we heard from local residents, and will guide change in a responsible way in the coming years.”

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