Richmond’s 2016 street banners unveiled

Richmond News

Every fall, the City of Richmond hosts a street banner contest that encourages community members to submit creative and visually appealing designs that represent Richmond.

This year, the contest received more than 3,200 likes on Facebook as part of the community voting process and 10 winning banners were selected to beautify the city’s streetscapes.

“As a popular component to the City’s Partners for Beautification initiative, the street banner contest provides residents a grassroots opportunity to become more involved in the beautification of their city,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie.

“With almost 300 entries to choose from this year, the banner designs chosen really reflect Richmond’s uniqueness and diversity.” …

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A bridge too far

Vancouver Courier

On Friday of this week, Metro Vancouver council will meet to very likely ask the federal government to submit Premier Christy Clark’s proposal to replace the Massey Tunnel with a 10-lane bridge to a Canadian Environmental Assessment Review Panel.

It is likely to approve that motion because two weeks ago the Metro Vancouver Intergovernmental Committee passed a similar resolution.

It is a resolution that found its genesis at Richmond city council after it received a report from longtime councillor Harold Steves.

Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie told me earlier this week that the Port Mann Bridge replacement was “just a bridge.”

What Clark is planning to replace the Massey Tunnel with is much more than that. Which is why the feds should be in the picture.

Part of the plan is to dredge out the river so much larger ships can make it all the way up to the Fraser Surrey Docks across from New Westminster.

Steves puts the impact this way: by “removing the tunnel to allow dredging to 15.5 meters” — which is four metres deeper than the river is now — “this will convert the Fraser to an industrial river. It will have a dramatic effect on the fishing industry, habitat and farmland and even impact dykes.” …

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Province of British Columbia announces $16.6 million in funding for flood mitigation project in Richmond

Canadian Underwriter

The province of British Columbia has announced $16.6 million in funding toward a flood mitigation project in Richmond that will upgrade multiple pump stations.

Announced as part of public safety funding in the 2016 provincial budget, the $24.95-million project also includes $8.3 million from the City of Richmond, the provincial Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure said in a press release on Thursday. The combined funding will help Richmond rebuild four pump stations that have reached the end of their functional lifespan and enhance 1,750 metres of the north dike to accommodate rising sea levels induced by climate change. …

Malcolm Brodie, Mayor of Richmond, noted in the release that the city is an island community, surrounded by water. “Richmond’s 49 kilometres of dike and the supporting drainage system is a critical part of our civic infrastructure, protecting us from the threat of flooding,” Brodie said. “We must continually strive to improve this network to address both current threats and emerging risks from climate change. This new funding will help Richmond address this important need for our community.” …

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Province to help keep Richmond dry with pump station upgrades

Richmond News

B.C.’s Minister of State for Emergency Preparedness Naomi Yamamoto was in Richmond Thursday morning to announce funding for four drainage pump upgrades in a city that will eventually find itself completely below sea level.

The province will spend $16.6 million with the City of Richmond chipping in $8.3 million this year to upgrade the four pumps that have reached the end of their lifespan. Some money will also go to enhancing 1.7 kilometres of the north dyke. …

“King tides, the spring freshet and rising sea levels are just a few of the demands on our resilient drainage system,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie who noted hundreds of millions of more dollars will be needed to keep Richmond dry.

“Obviously, the city cannot bear these costs alone,” said Brodie, noting the city spends, on average, about $10 million a year on dykes and drainage, from a dedicated utility budget. …

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Airport opens new direct flights to Richmond’s sister city Xiamen, China

Richmond News

Vancouver International Airport has strengthened its hold as the “preferred connecting hub” between Asia and the Americas, according to its CEO Craig Richmond, after he announced Tuesday that a fifth mainland-Chinese airline will soon service direct flights to Sea Island. …

Xiamen is an important port city and a popular tourist destination with tree-lined beaches, added Richmond, who was joined by Richmond Centre MLA and B.C.’s Minister of International Trade Teresa Wat, Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie and China’s Acting Consul General Fan Xiadong at the announcement in YVR’s international departures terminal. …

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Delta council says no need to delay bridge

Civic politicians in Delta told their Metro Vancouver colleagues last week there’s no need to delay plans to replace the George Massey Tunnel.

Delta council approved sending a staff report to the province, as well as all Metro Vancouver directors, countering the assertion that the regional district needs more time to assess the possible impacts of a new bridge.

The Metro Vancouver board recently approved a staff report requesting an additional two months to review the $3.5-billion provincial project. …

Several Lower Mainland mayors have spoken out against the project.

Last December, when the province announced more details on the bridge, Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie, a long-time critic of the plan, expressed reservations about the priority to build it. Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner suggested the regional mayors’ plan for transit, which failed to win tax funding support in a plebiscite last year, should take precedence, and Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson has predicted the new bridge would mean major congestion in the city. …

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City slides another $1.2 million towards 150th celebration

Richmond News

The City of Richmond is adding frosting to its Canada 150 celebration cake after city council approved an additional $1.2 million in spending for a variety of new, special events throughout 2017 to paint the town red and white.

“We’re planning a series of great events our whole community can enjoy and we’re inviting guests from across the region and around the world to join us,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie, via a news release.

Among the new events will be an enhanced Canada Day Street Festival, a wooden boat festival in late August, a harvest festival in October and a series of five outdoor music concerts in public plazas during the summer. …

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Metro Vancouver politicians want feds to scrutinize Massey bridge plan

Metro Vancouver politicians are expected to ask the federal government to conduct its own environmental assessment of the proposed new bridge to replace the Massey Tunnel, potentially with tougher scrutiny than the one already started by the B.C. government. …

Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie said Metro has serious concerns about the impact of a major new bridge on the regional growth strategy, as well as on air quality, transportation patterns and the environment.

“I’m talking about increased traffic flow and the resulting increase in greenhouse gas emissions,” Brodie said. “What’s it going to do to the estuary in terms of the bridge itself and the increased traffic on the river of the large tankers bringing materials up and down the river?” …

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B.C. group to ask for environmental review of Massey bridge

The Globe and Mail

A Metro Vancouver committee of mayors and other municipal leaders is expected to call on the federal government to launch an environmental assessment of controversial provincial plans for a 10-lane toll bridge to replace the Massey Tunnel. …

Malcolm Brodie, mayor of Richmond and a member of the committee voting Thursday, said a federal review would bring helpful perspectives to the discussion about building the bridge and also help guide Ottawa on funding commitments for the project.

Richmond would prefer an expansion of the existing tunnel, but has not taken any formal position on the bridge. However, Mr. Brodie said, the city has many questions about the proposed bridge.

He said he expects the provincial assessment to be positive. “I am looking for a deeper assessment,” he said referring to a possible federal review.

Mr. Brodie said he has not received any federal response to a call from Richmond for a federal review. …

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