How can we reach our 2020
Greenest City Targets?

GC 2020

How can we reach our 2020 Greenest City targets?

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  1. Encourage vegan options for all!

    A global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the ***** impacts of climate change, says the report from United Nations Environment Programme's (UNEP) international panel of sustainable resource management.

    1,073 votes
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      130 comments  ·  Lighter Footprint  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

      Low footprint food choices are not the same as vegan food choices in all cases, the analysis is more complex than this. Generally a low footprint diet is local, seasonal food, and limits consumption of red meat, dairy, and some grains. Low footprint food choices are included in the draft Greenest City Action Plan and will be discussed through community engagement activities.

    • Cycling for Everyone: Develop a complete cycling network that feels safe and attractive to all

      Studies show that most people are open to the idea of cycling, but are discouraged by routes that don't feel safe enough. Vancouver should build a complete network of cycling routes that feel safe and attractive to all, including children, seniors, and novice cyclists. On arterials and other busy streets, bike routes should be physically separated from traffic by curbs, planters, parked cars or other barriers (the Carrall Street Greenway and new Dunsmuir bike lanes are good examples). Quieter neighbourhood routes can be made safer through improved traffic calming including reduced motor vehicle speed limits.

      Links: http://vancouver.ca/cycling (City of Vancouver), …

      1,002 votes
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        An ongoing process. Many of the City’s recent initiatives (e.g. downtown separated bike lane trial, additional traffic calming on existing routes) work towards this vision. The draft Greenest City action plan will support this idea, and include directions to help inform the upcoming transportation plan update and new active transportation plan.

      • Extend food waste collection program to include apartments and condos

        While the curbside food waste program is terrific, detached homeowners already have the option of composting in their yards. Extending the program to include apartments dramatically reduce municipal waste and will finally make composting available to the growing number of Vancouverites living in high-density buildings (which is also great for the environment).

        770 votes
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          25 comments  ·  Reduce waste  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

          The City supports Metro Vancouver’s plans to ban food scraps from the incinerator and landfills by 2015. The City will collaborate with Metro Vancouver to develop and implement a plan to ensure apartments, condos, businesses and institutions have access to food scraps collection programs before the ban comes into effect.

        • City university

          Degree granting inter-institutional relationship between the regions post secondary education institutions and municipal governments to study, research and solve our pressing city and regional challenges.

          732 votes
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            40 comments  ·  Lighter Footprint  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

            There is a Campus City Collaborative project in the early stages of planning, where all of the post-secondary institutions are working with the City and the VEDC to talk about movement toward the greenest city, with a focus on creation of green jobs.

          • Encourage urban food production

            Urban vegetable gardens and container planting can go a long way towards reducing our food miles and our dependence on imports.

            Successful projects in Mexico and Cuba show us that we can produce a lot of food in the city proper, so why don't we?

            669 votes
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              23 comments  ·  Encourage local food  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • High Speed Rail to Seattle

              From waterfront station tunnel underground to YVR then the line would follow parallel to highway 99 and then follow the I-5. Traveling an average speed of 250 km/hr you could reach YVR in 3 min at 4.10$, the border in 14 min, Bellingham in 23 min at 29.00$, Everett in 46 min at 58.00$ and finally Seattle in 57 min at 71.63$..... Imagine the possibilities of being able to travel to from downtown Vancouver to Downtown Seattle in just under an hour. Not only would this create green jobs, improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but it would also…

              626 votes
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                11 comments  ·  Create green jobs  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Build complete, walkable neighbourhoods interconnected by great transit and cycling routes.

                Transportation and land use go hand in hand. Good land use can reduce the distance people travel and support more sustainable choices like walking and cycling by bringing people closer to their daily destinations.

                The city should provide an appropriate mix of land uses and a high quality pedestrian-oriented public realm. Most services and amenities--such as grocery stores, schools, daycare, parks, community centres, and transit--should be within a safe, enjoyable 5 or 10 minute walk from where people live. Longer trips should be easily served by high quality transit and cycling options.

                Links: http://www.vtpi.org/landtravel.pdf, http://vancouver.ca/planning/

                599 votes
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                  18 comments  ·  Encourage shorter vehicle trips  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                  This is an evolutionary process. The City of Vancouver is already considered a North American leader in this regard. Current and future plans and projects (e.g. Cambie Corridor Planning Program) will continue to embrace this ideal.

                • 543 votes
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                    Requires support from TransLink. The City will continue to support this idea, through measures including secured rights-of-way (e.g. the centre median on 1st Avenue near the Olympic Village). The recent Olympic Line streetcar demonstration was very successful and helps make the business case for this project.

                  • Develop a local food hub and expand the availability of local food at a neighbourhood level

                    A local food hub would support the distribution, processing and storage of local food, a current gap in the local food system. This hub would then be connected to avenues to access locally produced food distributed throughout the neighbourhoods, making more available food produced locally by farmers outside Vancouver as well as urban farmers.

                    506 votes
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                      12 comments  ·  Encourage local food  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Drinking water fountains + bottled water ban

                      Ban bottled water. Install public fountains instead! Make sure they're designed so you can fit a tall Sigg steel water bottle underneath to fill it.

                      Many restaurants and cafes are nice enough to provide water taps/pitchers and glasses - encourage the rest to do so.

                      426 votes
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                        started  ·  26 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Repeal mandatory bike helmet legislation

                        Vancouver will never convince anyone of being the 'greenest' city without a huge modal shift towards cycling (walking, and transit).

                        Such a shift will not happen until the average Vancouverite cycles on a daily basis. This will not happen without better infrastructure, progressive policy, AND repealing mandatory helmet legislation.

                        Yes, this is a provincial law. However, I am sure that Vancouver has the ability to make this change happen.

                        p.s., the safety and health benefits of more people cycling far outweigh the potential safety benefits of bicycle helmets.

                        408 votes
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                        • Create more affordable family housing within easy walking/biking/transit radius of downtown.

                          We need more family housing (i.e. 3-bedroom units that real people with under-$100K incomes can afford) within easy walking/biking/transit radius of downtown. Studies have shown that 20 minutes is the maximum work commute that people can withstand before they start to accrue major daily stress. And coincidentally, letting people live ... See Moreclose to their jobs leads to massive reduction in auto emissions.

                          How to create affordable housing?

                          - Force developers to offer a mandatory number of units beyond the tiny 1-bedroom and 1+den units that currently dominate the market.
                          - Take over apartment buildings and convert them to co-ops. …

                          404 votes
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                          • Reclaim road and/or parking space to create plazas and parklets.

                            Over 30% of the city's land is street space, and about half of that area is paved for roads. Vancouver should follow in the steps of cities like New York, San Francisco, and Paris, redefining public space to put people first.

                            Public plazas and parklets could be created by temporarily and inexpensively reclaiming paved areas using things like simple barriers, paint, potted plants, and movable furniture. If the new public spaces are successful, permanent reclaimation could be considered. San Francisco's Pavement to Parks program provides a great example for how this could be pursued.

                            Links: http://sfpavementtoparks.sfplanning.org/ (San Francisco Pavement to…

                            394 votes
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                            • Provide abundant & secure bicycle parking at transit stations & other key locations.

                              For many people who live too far from a transit station to walk, cycling could be a great option--if they only had a safe place to leave their bike. Unfortunately bicycle theft is a common occurance in major cities, and Vancouver is no exception.

                              Abundant and secure bicycle parking (e.g. 'bike stations') should be provided at transit stations and other key locations throughout the city (e.g. downtown Granville Island). Security can be enhanced through smartcard access, security cameras, and/or an attendant. Depending on the location and demand, additional end-of-trip amenities such as lockers, showers, and repair shops could also be…

                              360 votes
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                                This is acknowledged as a key strategy to better integrate cycling and transit. In 07/2009 the City committed some funding for secure parking facilities at Broadway-City Hall and Olympic Village Canada Line stations. The City has also conducted a feasibility study for a downtown bike centre.

                              • Mandatory 25¢ fee for plastic shopping bags

                                Encourage shoppers to bring their own bags, and create a shift in retail practices, by requiring a payment for every disposable shopping bag.

                                334 votes
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                                  28 comments  ·  Reduce waste  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Change the Building Code to require rainwater collection & water efficient irrigation systems

                                  Outdoor water consumption represents a significant portion of residential water use. In particular, the watering of lawns and gardens is one of the more water intensive of outdoor water activities. Requiring installation of rainwater harvesting devices for irrigation purposes would decrease the dependence on treated water for irrigation purposes. In addition, specifying the installation of water efficient irrigation systems would further reduce water demand.

                                  314 votes
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                                    11 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • University of Vancouver

                                    One thing Vancouver needs is a University downtown. This would keep the student population downtown, which could create a younger and more vibrant downtown. The University should be located just south of the olympic village. Its north border being 2nd Ave, east border Main st, south border Broadway, and west border Cambie. This University would be known as the greenest university in the world. It could be completely pedestrian/bike only. With the future broadway extension in the south, Canada Line on the west, and future streetcar to the north the students would have no problem getting around. Of course there…

                                    302 votes
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                                      16 comments  ·  Off topic  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • Add east-west rapid transit

                                      Transferring from Canada Line to Skytrain without going downtown creates a huge bottle-neck at the B-line stop. There need to be more efficient ways to move East-West

                                      289 votes
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                                        TransLink is currently leading a study to determine the best approach to deliver high-capacity, fast, frequent, and reliable rapid transit for the Broadway Corridor from Commercial Drive to UBC. A number of technologies and alignment options are being considered, including rail rapid transit (e.g. SkyTrain), surface light rail transit, and bus rapid transit.

                                        The City of Vancouver is directly involved as a partner agency in the study. In April 2010, City Council endorsed ten principles to guide City input into this process (http://vancouver/ubcline/principles).

                                        Visit http://vancouver.ca/ubcline to learn more about this work, including upcoming public engagement events.

                                      • Require all fast food take-out containers to be reusable, compostable, or recyclable

                                        There are plenty of reusable, compostable and recyclable food take-out container options these days (see UBC's compostable take-out containers for an example).

                                        All facilities should also have compost and recycling collection for these containers, with clever designs that prevent cross-contamination.

                                        Thought should be given to whether used food containers need to be washed before being deposited into the store's compost collection bin, or whether a process can be implemented that would take care of this after collection.

                                        272 votes
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                                          10 comments  ·  Reduce waste  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • Municipal tax break for property owners that allow urban farmers to farm their yards

                                          There already exist entrepreneurs producing significant amounts of food in yards in Vancouver, often through a CSA distribution model (Inner City Farms, Fresh Roots, City Farm Boy, My Urban Farm, and others). The landowners that partner with these farmers should receive tax breaks based on the amount of food being produced on their property. With such inflated property taxes in Vancouver, this would provide a delicious incentive for landowners to allow urban farmers to access their land.

                                          256 votes
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                                            4 comments  ·  Encourage local food  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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