Something we keep hearing in this fight against the massive expansion of the Edgewater Casino is that “it’s on BC government-owned land, so the City of Vancouver can’t stop it.”
Not true. Very much not true.
PavCo (short for BC Pavilion Corporation), the BC government’s crown corporation, is not free to do anything it likes. It is subject to Vancouver city processes and regulations like everyone else. It must go through the rezoning application process for the casino (which is currently much smaller and more hidden away) and it must go through the application process for gaming expansion in Vancouver city limits.
It’s interesting reading.
In it, the province affirms municipal jurisdiction over land use and gaming licenses, and explicitly agrees to abide by local government decisions.
This massive casino expansion smack in the middle of our downtown is not a done deal, and it must not be rubber-stamped by City Councl just because the City is being bullied by the Province. If you want to learn more about why the City of Vancouver is having trouble saying no to the province, read on or look at this excellent series of investigative articles on the Edgewater expansion by the Vancouver Observer.