October 22, 2008 - Minutes

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City of Richmond Meeting Minutes

Public Works & Transportation Committee



Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Anderson Room

Richmond City Hall


Councillor Derek Dang, Chair

Councillor Bill McNulty, Vice-Chair

Councillor Linda Barnes

Councillor Harold Steves


Councillor Evelina Halsey-Brandt

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m.








It was moved and seconded



That the minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee held on Wednesday, September 17, 2008, be adopted as circulated.











Wednesday, November 19, 2008 (tentative date) at 4:00 p.m. in the Anderson Room.








Ms. Carol Jung, 10471 Aintree Crescent addressed Committee and stated that she and her family had lost enjoyment in their home due to the following concerns:




when the Jung family purchased their home, the boulevard was covered with asphalt, but after the City completed a 2006/07 drainage and water main upgrade project on the Crescent the boulevard was restored with grass;




the boulevard has shallow dirt and sparse grass and as a result, after rainfall large mud holes are created;




some other residences on the Crescent had their boulevards restored with asphalt after the upgrade construction work was completed;




a safety issue arises due to the Jung’s resident being located on a curve; in addition, at night their boulevard is dark due to a lack of street lights; a family car parked outside the home was hit and damaged by another driver;




the back lane has deep pot holes that damage bumpers of cars; the pot holes are filled by the City, but the holes reoccur on a regular basis;



In conclusion, Ms. Jung requested that the boulevard in front of her home be allowed to be put back to its original condition.



In response to queries from Committee regarding Ms. Jung’s comments staff advised that:




if a construction crew damages a lane the City uses the damage deposit received from the construction company, and sends City crews to repair pot holes;




Transportation staff proposes to upgrade lanes in the Aintree Crescent neighbourhood within the next three years;




works yard crews are dispatched on a regular basis, usually once a month, to re-grade lanes that have developed pot holes;




prior to the upgrade construction undertaken by the City in 2006/07 the boulevard area fronting Ms. Jung’s residence was paved with asphalt without the City’s knowledge or authorization; the construction work on the new drainage main necessitated the removal of Ms. Jung’s paved boulevard and the restoration of the boulevard was completed with soil and grass, as dictated by the City’s Boulevard Maintenance Regulation Bylaw No. 7174;




Bylaw No. 7174 regulates boulevards and prohibits hard surfaces, such as asphalt, gravel, rock, or bricks on boulevards;




the Jung’s boulevard includes a narrow strip of gravel between the paved Crescent and the grass boulevard;




the City’s Policy 9016 addresses issues regarding post-construction restoration standards on boulevards;




a 2-foot width is the City standard for parking allowed on the street beside a grassed boulevard




the City does invest staff time in reviewing boulevards to ascertain if they adhere to the Bylaw, but if a boulevard that contravenes Bylaw 7174 comes to the attention of staff, the City may or may not take action to have the boulevard grassed.



The Chair noted that the Boulevard Maintenance Regulation Bylaw No. 7174 must be followed. He added that a demonstration of fairness is in order and directed staff to examine City records with respect to Ms. Jung’s neighbours and the means by which they restored their boulevards to asphalt.



As a result of the discussion following the Ms. Jung’s presentation, the following referral motion was introduced:



It was moved and seconded



That staff (i) investigate the records describing the historical background of the grass dedication in front of 10471 Aintree Crescent and (ii) consult with Carol Jung with regard to the grass dedication and (iii) report back with details.












(Report:  September 30, 2008, File No.:  10-6045-09-05/2008-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 2509004)



Amy Hennessy and Art Kanzaki of Terasen Gas Inc. used a Power Point presentation (on file in the City Clerk’s Office) to explain Terasen Gas’ proposed NPS 20 natural gas transmission main replacement project.



The following details of the project were highlighted:




the upgrade involves the replacement of 1,400 metres of pipeline within the existing river crossing right of way under the South Arm of the Fraser River;




the pipelines that run beneath the South Arm, between East Richmond and Delta’s Tilbury Island, serve 117,000 customers in: Richmond,  Vancouver, the City of North Vancouver, the District of North Vancouver, West Vancouver and parts of Burnaby;




three reasons for the project are to: (i) have the pipelines meet Terasen Gas’ seismic criteria so they do not fail in the middle of the river in the event of an earthquake; (ii) address erosion concerns on the banks of the South Arm; and (iii) make the pipelines compatible with the City’s pending dike improvements;




during the project Terasen Gas would mitigate: (i) the impact to land owners on either side of the river and Terasen Gas’ need to provide compensation for, or accommodation of, their business needs; (ii) noise issues that may arise during the work; and (iii) the minimization of construction disruption, including scheduling Terasen Gas’ work on weekends.



Discussion ensued with regard to the following points:




Terasen Gas personnel monitor the safety and security of their pipelines, by air and on the ground, on a regular basis in order to manage any risk that could arise;




construction work would take place approximately 300 metres inland from the banks of the river;




Terasen Gas proposes to use horizontal drilling; this would be done outside any of the City’s environmentally sensitive areas;




the routing of the proposed new pipelines is within Terasen Gas’ existing right of way.



It was moved and seconded



That a letter be written to Terasen Inc., indicating Council’s support of their application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to the BC Utilities Commission for their proposed NPS 500 natural gas transmission main replacement project.






(Report:  October 3, 2008, File No.:  10-6060-01/2008-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 2514314)



It was moved and seconded



That Council authorize the General Manager, Engineering and Public Works to sign a Licence Agreement with Bell Canada in regard to 11411 No. 5 Road.






(Report:  October 10, 2008, File No.:  10-6060-02-01) (REDMS No. 2513685)



In response to a query regarding condominium dwellers who request that instead of a flat rate for metered water services, they receive a water metre bill that reflects their individual water use, Siu Tse, Manager, Engineering Planning advised that the City advises developers of condominium buildings that if they would like water services for individual units that can be accommodated, but that it is too costly for the City to undertake.



It was moved and seconded



That Waterworks and Water Rates Bylaw No. 5637 Amendment Bylaw No. 8442 be introduced and given first, second and third readings.





At the request of Councillor McNulty, Victor Wei, Director of Transportation provided a brief explanation of the nature of the pedestrian signal where Gilley Road intersects Westminster Highway in the Hamilton neighbourhood.



Mr. Wei advised that the existing traffic control method at the intersection was installed in 2003. Since that time transportation staff has studied the feasibility of providing a permanent full traffic signal at the intersection and do not recommend a change to the signals at this location at this time. 



A brief discussion ensued and Mr. Wei advised that transportation staff would monitor traffic conditions at this intersection.



In response to a further inquiry regarding the stretch of Minoru Boulevard, between Westminster Highway and Granville Avenue, and the feasibility of replacing the current amber signal lights at pedestrian crossings with red lights, Mr. Wei advised that staff would examine the issue.



A brief discussion ensued and remarks were made that many seniors cross Minoru when the yellow lights are flashing, but that drivers often do not stop for yellow lights.



As a result of the discussion the following referral motion was introduced:



It was moved and seconded



That Transportation investigate:




at the intersection of Gilley Road and Westminster Highway, the feasibility of upgrading the existing pedestrian signals to full traffic signals, and estimate the cost associated with the upgrade;




along Minoru Boulevard, between Westminister Highway and Granville Avenue, the feasibility of replacing the special crosswalks  that have amber flashing lights, with pedestrian signals; and



report back.





Reference was made to the use of biodiesel fuel as it relates to the City’s Green Fleet Action Initiatives and a comment was made regarding the negative impact the use of  biodiesel fuel is having on the agricultural sector.



In response to a query regarding the use of biodiesel fuel by the City, Dave Semple, Director of Parks and Public Works Operations advised that staff is  investigating alternative forms of recycled fuel.



As a result of a brief discussion the following referral motion was introduced:



It was moved and seconded



That staff explore and report back on: (i) the feasibility of the continued use of biodiesel fuel and (ii) alternative fuel initiatives the City could use.










Street Signs at Intersections




In response to a concern that was raised with regard to upgrading street signs so residents and tourists can find their way around with ease Mr. Wei responded that:





it is City policy to have street signs posted at every intersection;





the City has initiated the process of awarding a contract for illuminated overhead street signs to be installed at all key intersections throughout the City so that visibility will be greatly improved.





Carbon Footprint Calculator




Jim Young, Manager Engineering Design and Construction, reported that two City staff members sit on the board of the  North American Society of Trenchless Technology, and that this Society has created a carbon footprint calculator. The calculator is available online and anyone can use it to quantify the savings they have achieved by the steps they have taken to reduce their carbon emissions.





City Centre Infrastructure and Servicing




Mr. Gonzalez reported that, with the recent adoption of the City Centre Area Plan (CCAP), the Engineering and Public Works department will be modifying the infrastructure and servicing process in relation to development within the City Centre.




Using modelling techniques, and with land use information contained in the CCAP, staff can create a long term strategy to assist with infrastructure and utility development that is under the jurisdiction of other public or private companies.




A brief discussion ensued regarding Richmond’s Development Cost Charge (DCC) funds in comparison to DCC funds realized by other municipalities. Mr. Gonzalez noted that the long term strategy is to reduce the City’s DCC income and this could be achieved by coordinating the construction of infrastructure, that may require multiple agreements to reimburse developers that front end works that service others. Efficiencies and savings could result from this type of coordinated effort by the City and private developers or public utility partners.








It was moved and seconded



That the meeting adjourn (4:46 p.m.).






Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Wednesday, October 22, 2008.



Councillor Derek Dang


Sheila Johnston

Committee Clerk