Planning Committee Meeting Minutes - January 22, 2002


Planning Committee



Tuesday, January 22nd, 2002


Anderson Room
Richmond City Hall


Councillor Bill McNulty, Chair
Councillor Lyn Greenhill, Vice-Chair
Councillor Linda Barnes
Councillor Sue Halsey-Brandt
Councillor Rob Howard
Mayor Malcolm Brodie

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m., and advised that Items 4, 5, 6, and 7 would be dealt with before Item 3.





It was moved and seconded


That the minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee held on Tuesday, January 8th, 2002, be adopted as circulated.







The next meeting of the Committee will be held on Tuesday, February 5, 2002, at 4:00 p.m. in the Anderson Room.




(Report: Jan. 11/01, File No.: 8275-04) (REDMS No. 597898)


Mr. Bert Hick, representing the applicant, advised that he endorsed the staff recommendation, and that he was available to answer any questions the Committee might have.


It was moved and seconded


That the application by Rising Tide Consultants Ltd. For a Class "D" Licenced Neighbourhood Pub at 8220 Lansdowne Road be supported, and that the Liquor Control and Licencing branch be advised:



of this recommendation; and



that the RCMP does not object.




(Report: Jan. 11/02, File No.: 8060-20-7324) (REDMS No. 598124, 598131, 598137)


Councillor Greenhill questioned whether the proposed bylaw should contain a requirement for the placement of the tower a minimum distance from adjacent residential properties. Discussion ensued on this particular issue, with advice being given by the General Manager, Urban Development David McLellan that while this matter had not been considered for this particular application, the bylaw could be amended to include such a requirement. He added that there would most likely not be a problem for this particular location as there were no homes located nearby. Cllr. Greenhill asked that staff be sensitive to the location of these towers adjacent to residential areas.


Further questions were raised about the feasibility of making the minimum distance requirement a blanket requirement, and advice was given that the proposed use was similar to that permitted in the Agricultural zone.


It was moved and seconded


That Bylaw No. 7324, which amends Zoning and Development Bylaw 5300 as it relates to Cellular Radio and Telephone Transmission Facilities in Golf Course District (AG2), be introduced and given first reading.




(RZ 01-190942 - Report: Dec. 27/01, File No.: 8060-20-7303) (REDMS No. 554465, 554872, 554639)


The Manager, Development Applications, Joe Erceg briefly reviewed the report with the Committee. In response to questions about retention of the existing trees, he provided information on the process followed to determine if such trees could be retained. Mr. Erceg explained that any trees which could not be retained were replaced with double the number of trees of a greater calliper and maturity than the trees normally used, to compensate for the loss.


It was moved and seconded


That Bylaw No. 7303, for the rezoning of 9051 and 9071 Beckwith Road from Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area F (R1/F) to Automobile-Oriented Commercial District (C6), be introduced and given first reading.




(Report: Dec. 17/01, File No.: 8060-20-7319) (REDMS No. 584421, 585884, 585872)


Mr. Erceg briefly reviewed the report with Committee members. In response to questions about lane access to Frobisher Drive, he explained that the lane would enter Frobisher Drive and travel eastward along the north property line of the existing lots. Mr. Erceg added that proposed Lots C and D would still access Frobisher Drive near their north boundaries, but access to Lot B would only be from the lane.

It was moved and seconded


That Bylaw No. 7319, for the rezoning of 7980 Frobisher Drive and 4271 Blundell Road from "Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area E (R1/E)" to "Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area K (R1/K)", be introduced and given first reading.







Urban Development Institute Economic Outlook Forecasting
(File No. 0060-20-UDIN1-01)


Ms. Olga Ilich, Past President of the Urban Development Institute Pacific Region, provided information on the Institute and the UDI Development Committee. Introduced by Ms. Ilich were Ms. Renate Bublick, Assistant Executive Director, UDI; Norm Couttie, Vice President Development, Adera; Neil Chrystal, Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing, Polygon Homes; and Stu Morrison, Lee Blanchard and Lawrence Green, representing Royal LePage Real Estate Services, who will each speak to, and provide additional information on, specific areas of the presentation. A copy of their presentation is on file in the City Clerks Office.


The following subjects (and respective speakers), comprised the UDI presentation:


"Economic Overview", including In-Migration vs BC Housing Starts; Richmond Housing Starts vs Population Growth; Richmond Housing Starts vs Building Permit Values; Richmond Population vs Employment Growth; Greater Vancouver Regional District Residential DCCs; DCC Year-End Balances; Passengers vs Cargo at YVR; Median Single-Detached House Price; and Municipal Tax Rates 2000, was addressed by Ms. Bublick.


"UDI Residential Survey 2002" and how Richmond compared to Burnaby, Delta and Vancouver in Development Process Rating, Efficiency and Cost Effectiveness; and Staff/Council Efficiency, was addressed by Mr. Couttie.


Mr. Chrystal provided a recap of the 2002 Market Forecast for Richmond, including the Detached Market Highlights; Single Family Detached Market Forecast 2002; Townhome Market Highlights; Townhouse Market Forecast 2002; Apartment Market Highlights; Apartment Market Forecast 2002; Challenges and Opportunities, and Recommendations.


At this point, a brief discussion ensued among Committee members and the delegation on (i) the future cost of housing in Richmond due to the lack of available land, (ii) the feasibility of providing housing with master bedrooms on the main floor to meet the needs of soon to be retiring baby boomers; (iii) housing markets; (iv) townhome purchase prices; and (v) anticipated housing costs for 2003.


Stu Morrison, Lawrence Green and Lee Blanchard then spoke on the "Richmond Market Overview" component of the presentation, with each gentleman speaking on specific sites which could be the subject of future development or redevelopment. Also addressed were the current vacancy levels in the office and industrial market.


Discussion ensued briefly among Committee members and the delegation on the need to (i) increase the land supply for commercial and industrial developments and re-developments, and (ii) review DCCs with respect to refurbishing existing commercial and industrial buildings. Also discussed was the lack of available land for single family developments; the lack of housing starts because of developers having to purchase existing homes and then demolishing these homes; the City's current policy of (i) encouraging population density around shopping centres, and (ii) requiring the inclusion of lanes in developments rather than being allowed access to arterial roads.


In concluding the discussion, Ms. Ilich thanked the Committee and staff for their efforts, and indicated that she was looking forward to a better and more prosperous year.


The Chair thanked the delegation for their presentation, and asked if the presentation could be made annually.


The delegation then left the meeting.


(Report: Jan. 10/02, File No.: 4050-10) (REDMS No. 545616, 328493, 484673, 298239)


The Manager, Policy Planning, Terry Crowe, accompanied by Planner Janet Lee, reviewed the report in detail with the Committee. He then introduced Mr. Dave Melnychuk, representing the Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Fisheries, Mr. Tony Pellett, of the Land Reserve Commission, Mr. Bill Zylmans, and Mr. Bruce May, Chair of the Richmond Farmers Institute.


Mr. May stated that he supported the proposed strategy as it should help the Institute to cope with the change in direction in the agricultural industry. He noted that the concerns of farmers had been given a high priority and that the strategy outlined proposals to deal with those concerns. Mr. May stated that a key strategy was the proposed formation of an agricultural advisory committee, which would be asked to deal with on-going and new agricultural issues. He further stated that the results of the public review would be a benefit to the City and to the agricultural community.


Discussion then ensued among Committee members and the delegation on the proposed strategy, and in particular, on such matters as:


how the results of the strategy would be evaluated to determine its success over the coming years


the feasibility of appointing a member of the general public to the agricultural advisory committee


the need to educate the public on the agricultural industry and issues relating to this industry, including the use of pesticides, and the need to support this industry locally to increase viability


No. 4 of the 2021 Agricultural Viability Strategy Principles, which indicated that "Richmond farmers would be provided with the necessary support, services and infrastructure that are required for agricultural viability" advice was given that the intent was that this would be subject to budget restrictions and the speed with which a specific project had to be initiated


the elimination of the proposed mid-island dyke along No. 8 Road


the inclusion of the MOT and DND lands in the Agricultural Land Reserve, which could be contrary to the desires of Council regarding future development of this property; the comment was also made that inclusion of the MOT lands in the long term plans would allow the use of the land for agricultural purposes in the future


the composition of the proposed agricultural advisory committee and whether any of the operators of smaller farming operations would be included


whether adoption of the proposed strategy would help to resolve the problems being faced by farmers during the discussion which ensued on this matter, advice was given that viability was most important and that issues had to be addressed to keep viability high


the non-farm uses now being considered for agricultural properties and the different kinds of recreational livestock taking over agricultural lands; and whether the re-organization of the Land Reserve Commission would have an impact on this development.


During the discussion on measuring the results of the strategy, the comment was made by Mr. May that the strategy had already had a positive impact because of the relationships formed between the Richmond Farmers Institute and City staff, the Land Reserve Commission and the Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Fisheries. He added however that it would be difficult to measure the results of this relationship.


Information was also provided during the discussion on the process followed to develop the strategy now being considered by the Planning Committee.


(Mayor Brodie left the meeting during the discussion and did not return.)


During the discussion, staff and the delegation were congratulated on the preparation of an excellent report, and for finding a solution to the proposed mid-island dyke.


In response to concerns expressed about the increase in non-farm uses on agricultural properties, Mr. Pellett provided information on the mandate of the Land Reserve Commission. He advised that with regard to non-farm uses, the Commission had been directed to be more responsive to community needs. He stated however that with the creation of the strategy, it may be possible that the Commission and the City could work together to develop a delegation agreement for those proposals which were in accordance with the strategy, which would allow the City to make decisions without involving the Land Commission.


Also discussed by Committee members and the delegation were such issues as (i) the lack of short term solutions in the strategy to improve agriculture; and (ii) the possible future expansion of greenhouses in Richmond. The comment was made by Mr. May that because of the current economic situation and climatic conditions, it was doubtful that greenhouse construction, similar to that which occurred in Delta, would take place in Richmond.


Reference was made to a number of recommendations in the strategy, that a liaison with the Chamber of Commerce may open up a number of opportunities, and questions were raised about whether (i) the Richmond Farmers Institute was a member of that organization, and (ii) the suggestion that an agriculture land registry could be developed in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce.


Advice was given that Mr. Bill Jones was a member of the Chamber of Commerce; however, the comment was made that perhaps the Chamber should include the agricultural industry as a membership category.


It was moved and seconded





the draft Richmond Agricultural Viability Strategy (2002) be referred to the public for review;



the Terms of Reference for a proposed Agricultural Advisory Committee, be endorsed; on the understanding that the membership composition would be increased to include a "citizen at large"; and



staff be authorized to advertise for nominations and submit names to Council for appointment.







Due to the lateness of the meeting, it was agreed that the presentation of the GIS system would take place at the next meeting of the Committee.


(Councillor Sue Halsey-Brandt left the meeting (6:00 p.m.) and did not return.)





Mr. McLellan reported on a recent meeting of the Greater Vancouver Regional District to undertake a review of the Liveable Region Strategy, noting that all of the questions raised by the City about the regional plan, sustainability and its definitions, were raised during a presentation made by the Chief Administrative Officer, Mr. Johnny Carline.


Mr. McLellan advised that he would be preparing a report to the Public Works & Transportation Committee on a strategy for changing transit priorities within the Liveable Region Strategy.




It was moved and seconded


That the meeting adjourn (6:08 p.m.).




Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Tuesday, January 22nd, 2002.



Councillor Bill McNulty

Fran J. Ashton
Executive Assistant