Friday, December 16, 2011

Mayor rings Bell with letter about lousy lights

Publicly, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson is a rather placid fella.

So I found the tone of this Oct. 24 letter to Jobs, Tourism and Innovation Minister Pat Bell stern.

Bell is responsible for B.C. Pavilion Corporation, the provincial Crown corporation that operates B.C. Place Stadium. As part of the $563 million stadium renovation, Terry Fox Plaza was remade with Douglas Coupland's statues of the Canadian hero, forever heading west.

PavCo erected a giant video screen on the exterior of the stadium, angering area residents who won't tolerate bright lights flashing in their apartment windows. They were never consulted and are fighting back. PavCo used B.C. Place's provincial status under the B.C. Enterprise Corporation Act to bypass the city hall bureaucracy.

Not only did Robertson ask Bell to respect the city's sign bylaw, but he also asked PavCo to turn off the lights inside the stadium at night. PavCo has claimed that the stadium is more energy efficient than before the renovation, despite erecting so many video screens.

I obtained Robertson's letter via Freedom of Information. I am waiting for Bell's ministry to send me a copy of his reply, which apparently was sent Dec. 12 or 13.

Read my story here. See Robertson's letter below.

Vancouver Mayor's stern letter to Minister Responsible for PavCo

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