FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 9, 2014—Justice delayed, court process hijacked. Concord Pacific’s first act as a full party to the community’s dispute with the City of Vancouver is to postpone established Court date.
“The City must be happy that this will be buried until after the November 15, 2014 Civic election. There are significant reported financial contributions by Concord Pacific to Vision Vancouver. We assume the incumbent administration will not want to highlight its partnership with the developer in this legal battle with the community as we run up to November 15,” stated Fern Jeffries, Co-Chair of the FCRA (False Creek Residents Association).
The City’s lawyer’s has just now advised the FCRA that a key person is away on vacation until September 22nd and the City would have been unable to make the long established September 11th court date in any event. “It’s hard to understand this level of disorganization in such a well-paid bureaucracy,” said Jeffries. “The Court Rules say the City’s response was due June 12, 2014. I wonder if I could get that kind of extension on my property taxes”?
On May 21, 2014 the FCRA filed a judicial review application to the BC Supreme Court to declare invalid the City of Vancouver’s decision to allow commercial activities on land zoned for exclusive use as a park. The temporary permit allowing such use had expired on May 16, and the FCRA was asking the Court to disallow any renewal. “Temporary” permits had been in place since 2006. The City of Vancouver then issued yet another “temporary” 3-year permit on July 24, 2014. Accordingly, the FCRA amended its court case, asking the court to quash this renewed permit.
On July 24, the same date that the City advised Concord of the 3-year extension of its temporary permit, Concord filed an application in Supreme Court to be added as a party to the judicial review application. No explanation was given as to why a full month passed between the FCRA filing and the joint actions by the City and by Concord. The Court heard Concord’s application on August 27, 2014.
The FCRA’s opposition to Concord’s application was largely based on concern that they would hijack the judicial process and FCRA would never have its day in court.
On September 3, 2014, the Court granted Concord’s application. Concord’s first act as a full party in this matter is to apply for a postponement. “We likely won’t be in Court on this matter until January,” said Bob Kasting, counsel for the FCRA. He added that there may be numerous other legal manoeuvres initiated by Concord or the City to delay the matter even further.
The City is working with Concord to facilitate the use of the park-zoned land for a television reality show, the Game of Homes. “Concord makes so much money from this property, it is hardly surprising that they are not motivated to deliver the 9-acre park that was part of the 1990 agreement with the City,” said Jeffries.
The 1990 agreement called for 7650 units of housing and green space that included this 9-acre waterfront property. Over 10,000 have since been built and another 1,300 were recently approved as Concord’s “False Creek Central” across from BC Place.
For further information, contact Fern Jeffries, 604-328-7097
For legal information, contact Bob Kasting, 604-879-5952