How can we reach our 2020
Greenest City Targets?

GC 2020

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  1. Stormwater/Rainwater capture

    Kitchener/Waterloo has just introduced a innovative system to reduce the volume and increase the quality of stormwater runoff.
    In 2011 they will reduce the property tax and then charge every land owner a "Stormwater Levy" based on the quality and quantity of stormwater coming off of their property. In 2011 this will be a revenue neutral program.
    However, there will be a CREDIT program to reduce your stormwater levy by reducing the volume or increasing the quality of the stormwater leaving your site. This creates an economic incentive for the landowner to implement some of the water recycling programs that…

    9 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  2. Ensure City of Vancouver buildings/events only serve vegan food.

    The production of plant-based foodstuff is far better for the environment than animal products, which are one of the leading causes of climate change. The City should lead by example, and ban animal products at any event they cater - ie meetings, catered food for staff, event food.

    31 votes
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    1 comment  ·  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. We will look for opportunities to offer low footprint choices in City facilities.

  3. Futureproof Green Buildings by adapting to projected climate conditions

    Green buildings that do not consider future climate conditions are not as energy efficient or as sustainable as they could be

    3 votes
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    3 comments  ·  Build carbon neutral new buildings  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  4. Develop a city-supported urban farming program

    Community gardens and farmers markets are on the rise in Vancouver, but there remains a need for more productive farms (market gardens) to produce significant amounts of local food.

    There are more and more people interested in getting into farming as a livelihood, but barriers such as high land values and low profit margins in traditional farming make entry difficult.

    The City could develop a municipally-supported urban farming program where city-owned land would be affodably leased to prospective farmers for a season to gain experience, earn an income, and produce food for local residents. This could be coupled with a…

    240 votes
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    10 comments  ·  Encourage local food  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  5. Develop sustainable education tax incentives

    Provide a venue where Vancouver residents could go online and watch educational videos about sustainable and green ideas. In order to promote and encourage residents to watch the videos provide a tax incentive on say property tax. This will make more people watch these videos with the hope that a light will turn on in their heads as to making lifestyle changes that make sense as demonstrated by the videos.

    4 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Lighter Footprint  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  6. 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.

  7. Biodiversity and Permeability Standards through the Zoning By-law

    Create a biodiversity and permeability performance standards for new development through the Zoning By-Law. A variation on this could be create market incentives for more biodiversity.

    8 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Improve water quality  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  8. Ease the bureaucracy for laneway homes in Van. Dense living where we work, play, shop! Less sprawl!

    Laneway homes are beautiful, sustainably designed, detached family or single life dwellings. They fit into areas with houses and neighbourhoods that already exist. They take the place of old poorly used garages or unused back gardens. Less freeway traffic to get to the city; less pressure on our agricultural land reserve; less urban sprawl out into the valley.

    51 votes
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    7 comments  ·  Green existing buildings  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  9. Create a Separated Bike Lane on Commercial Drive

    Commercial Drive is a destination shopping street in Vancouver's east side. It is already a popular route for cyclists, but there is currently no cycling facility provided.

    The current route network lacks sufficient safe links to shopping destinations. A new separated bike route on Commercial Drive would address this issue and encourage new cyclists. As cyclist traffic increases, local businesses could also benefit from new the new street traffic.

    19 votes
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    The city’s new 10-year cycling program master plan will soon be in development, and hopefully completed within the next year. A big part of the work ahead is to identify where separated bike lanes might be appropriate.

    Lessons learned from the downtown trial will be an important input into the plan. The results so far support evidence elsewhere that separated bike lanes are a great way to make cycling more attractive on busy streets.

    For more information, visit http://vancouver.ca/cycling .

  10. Encourage clothes lines through subsidized "kits" and installation assistance

    Dryers are huge energy sucks, and outdoor clothes lines can do a fine job drying laundry (at least for the 50 days a year it doesn't rain!). Perhaps a summer student could be hired to come install clothes lines at residences around the city.

    11 votes
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    3 comments  ·  Reduce greenhouse gas emissions  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  11. Create a separated bike lane along Kingsway

    It is an incredibly direct route leading from Broadway corridor to Burnaby, but currently has far too many lanes of car traffic to feel good cycling along it.

    37 votes
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    The city’s new 10-year cycling program master plan will soon be in development, and hopefully completed within the next year. A big part of the work ahead is to identify where separated bike lanes might be appropriate.

    Lessons learned from the downtown trial will be an important input into the plan. The results so far support evidence elsewhere that separated bike lanes are a great way to make cycling more attractive on busy streets.

    For more information, visit http://vancouver.ca/cycling .

  12. Create a public bike sharing program (e.g. Montreal's Bixi, Paris' Velib)

    Montreal has installed the Bixi bike system, similar to many European systems, of having publicly available bikes for a small cost downtown on major street corners. The bikes are incredibly robust, widely available, and highly convenient with bike stands every 2-3 blocks.

    It encourages locals to bike (rather than take the bus or metro) and is great for short trips around town. It is very convenient as there is always a drop off location nearby, and there is no worry of getting your bike stolen. It is also a huge tourist attraction, making transport easier, cheaper and greener!

    155 votes
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  13. Work with shipping & cruise line industry to reduce idling and diesel emmissions whilst in Port

    Vancouver is the second busiest port in North America and sees a lot of shipping traffic. The City needs to work with the shipping & cruise industries to cut emissions whilst tankers/freightlines/cruise ships are docked in Port. Can we mandate a power hook-up to shore?

    3 votes
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    4 comments  ·  Improve air quality  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    Port Metro Vancouver is under Federal jurisdiction. The City of Vancouver works with Metro Vancouver, Environment Canada, Port Metro Vancouver to advocate for shore-power. This idea is included in the Draft Action Plan.

  14. 14 votes
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    3 comments  ·  Encourage shorter vehicle trips  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    The City supports the idea of road / congestion pricing, and bridge tolls are one possible implementation. A regional (as opposed to a city) approach might work best, given travel behaviour, patterns of movement, and jurisdictional issues. This lies outside City jurisdiction, so our role is limited to advocacy; changes to Provincial legislation are required.

  15. Covered bicycle parking

    Cycling in the rain's not so bad, but getting on a wet bicycle is not so great. We need to get more bicycle parking in sheltered areas where the bike is dry when you need it.

    8 votes
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  16. Increase residential density to achieve efficient land use and high walking/cycling/transit mobility

    Our high dependence on gasoline for transportation is largely due to our lifestyle of single-family dwellings. When density is increased, we would be reducing long-distance commutes and automatically encouraging people to walk and bike. Public transportation would also see more riders and be used more effectively. Higher residential density also means more efficient land use. The greenest city would need to protect its forests and restrict the area of urban development. This density is best accomplished by zoning schemes that discourage single-family dwellings and encourage mixed-use high-density developments. Ideally, there would be one day when some of our low density…

    32 votes
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    As the City reviews land use policy and development bylaws through Community, Central Area, and City-Wide planning programs, opportunities for increased residential density (particularly in walkable neighbourhoods with good transit connections) are actively pursued (in balance with concerns for neighbourhood character and community involvement in city building decisions at the neighbourhood level).

  17. 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.
    • Create a…
    404 votes
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  18. Don't re-invent the wheel

    Get advice and ideas from cities that are already the greenest (European cities) and from local experts (Suzuki Foundation).

    21 votes
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    started  ·  6 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  19. Pedestrianised Streets

    Make the following streets pedestrianised:
    Granville St--in the zone dedicated for transit use. Transit can remain on its current routing along Seymour and Howe. (Issue a refund to Translink for their contribution to the redesign)
    South of Smithe, re-allocate two lanes for cycling (four motor vehicle lanes is overtly excessive).
    South of Nelson, remove the car parking on the sidewalk! That has to be the ***** design imaginable. That space should be for pedestrians, not for perching motor vehicles. This is effectively creating a 6-lane arterial on Granville.

    Gastown, and;

    Robson--from Granville St., west to Jervis St.

    47 votes
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    The Rediscover Granville program was a big success in 2009, and the City will be looking to continue and build upon this work in future years. More broadly, the draft Greenest City plan will include directions to explore pedestrian-only and pedestrian-priority streets in the downtown core. Potential locations will be identified at a later date (e.g. as part of the transportation plan update).

    http://vancouver.ca/commsvcs/currentplanning/granvilleredesign/rediscover/

  20. Municipal Control of Blanket Speed Limits

    Limit motor vehicle speeds in the metro core to 40 km/h.
    Place a 30 km/h speed limit on all local residential and collector streets.
    Speed reduction is essential to ensure the safety of pedestrians and cyclists.

    19 votes
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    This is a policy direction that was adopted in the 1997 Transportation Plan. Staff have since been in discussion with provincial officials about legislative changes to support municipal control over blanket speed limits. Unfortunately those changes have not yet been adopted by the province.

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