Spent yesterday trading emails with Dino Celotti, the project manager behind the Opus Hotel rooftop patio. As you probably know, city council voted to reject the patio proposal after residents in adjacent condos worried it would bring about the apocalypse.
Tellingly, these fears don’t seem to have much life outside of public hearings. Read the comments over on CBC and you’ll find plenty of opinion in support of the patio and making Vancouver a more fun city. Ask your friends and they’ll probably tell you the same.
This support isn’t lost on Dino Celotti. Here are highlights of what he shared with me about the decision and where things go from here:
I think the truth is that the majority of Vancouver, even Yaletown residents, wanted this proposal to go through, but a few opposition residents banded together and created a very powerful campaign that mobilized those willing to voice a negative opinion.
Although disappointed about the outcome, we value the process and will return to meet with the city planning staff and the new city council to ascertain whether or not to proceed on some revised basis with the support of this new council. We will continue to be ‘good neighbours’ to the surrounding residents as we value our presence in Yaletown.
If the public wants to help and be part of the policy creation they should by all means contact the city planning department and ask them how to do it. I will be calling them tomorrow to ask the same question.
As far as things stand now, the Opus proposal is dead until the city comes around to developing rooftop patio guidelines. No word on how many pages this document will involve, but I’d wager a loonie it’s more than four but less than seven. Probably Times New Roman font.
Anyway, I’ll be contacting the city about how people can get involved in shaping the policy. If it becomes a question of majority rule at public hearings, the NIMBYs will always win. This culture must change.