Tuesday, March 21, 2023

March 20 Council Notes: Freedom of the City, More and Fasters Bus Service for Langley, HUB Cycling Award, and Development Policies

At last night’s Langley City Council meeting, Council held an official ceremony to bestow the Freedom of the City to former Councillor Gayle Martin for her 32 consecutive years of service to our community. She received recognition in front of family, friends, and members of the public. The City held a small reception after the Council meeting for Ms. Martin.

A picture of the Freedom of the City for Gayle Martin. Select the image to enlarge.

HUB Cycling, a charitable not-for-profit organization that promotes cycling and cycling education, awarded Langley City for the Glover Road Protected and Safe Bike Lane Project. Council accepted the award last night.

TransLink’s CEO Kevin Quinn also attended last night’s Council meeting as TransLink was the major funding partner for the Glover Road Project. At the meeting, Quinn also updated Council on TransLink’s 10-year vision. Besides SkyTrain to Langley, TransLink continues to increase its funding of active transportation infrastructure projects that support making rolling, walking, and cycling safer and more comfortable.

TransLink’s CEO Kevin Quinn presents to Council the agency’s 10-year priorities vision. Select the image to enlarge.

TransLink also plans to invest significantly in bus service, and not just regular bus service. TransLink plans to build RapidBus in Langley, which connects White Rock, Campbell Heights, Brookswood, Langley City, Willoughby, Walnut Grove, and Maple Ridge. TransLink plans to build Bus Rapid Transit between Langley City and Maple Ridge along 200th Street. Bus Rapid Transit travels in bus-only lanes along its entire route and has traffic signal prioritization to ensure that buses are never stuck in traffic. Bus Rapid Transit will give people a way out of congestion. TransLink also wants to create an express bus route between Newton and Langley via Highway 10.

Later in the meeting, Council gave final reading to our new Subdivision and Development Servicing Bylaw, which I previously posted about. Council also approved our new policy, “CO-82 – Latecomer Policy.”

The City may require a developer to upgrade water mains, sewer trunks, and roads as part of a development project. These upgrades may also benefit future development projects that will not have to pay for them, which is unfair. Besides equity, if these infrastructure upgrades have a large enough cost, a developer may forgo a project, slowing down new housing construction. The latecomer policy allows a developer who upgrades City infrastructure the opportunity to recover the cost from future developers whose projects would also benefit from the infrastructure. The City administers this policy for a fee, so there is no cost to the taxpayers.

Council also approved applying to the UBCM Poverty Reduction Planning and Action Stream 2 funding grant to support the “Living Well in Langley, A Poverty Reduction Strategy.” If the City receives the grant, it will be used to reopen Station Café in Timms Community Centre as a social enterprise. The café will support food service skills training, provide living wage employment, and provide access to fresh, healthy, local and sustainable food at an affordable cost.

As part of BC law, I had to read the following at the Council meeting:

THAT the report of the Chief Election Officer dated March 13, 2023, regarding public notice of Cherise Okeymow’s failure to file her campaign financial disclosure statement and pay the required late filing fee of $500, be received for information.

No comments: