Citizens denied input on casino
Re: Paragon’s pitch to double size of casino floor arouses concern, Dec. 17
Democracy was not served on Dec. 16 when the Vancouver development permit board held a public hearing on Paragon’s new casino proposal.
Many people who called the city were told there was no hearing, and even city hall had no reference to this critically important meeting on their website.
Although about two dozen citizens concerned about the social costs of expanded gambling spoke strongly against the doubled casino floor space at the hearing, their compelling, well-researched submissions were virtually ignored by the development permit board. The project passed with only minor conditions.
When Vancouver decided to build a new public library downtown, three architects’ renderings were presented for the public to vote on.
Edgewater Casino’s monstrous and inappropriate design, by contrast, is being rammed down our throats.
In the interests of a true democratic process, the public should be given a proper opportunity to comment on the building design for this iconic and highly visible site by BC Place before we are stuck with this eyesore at the heart of our city forever.
HILARY REID, Vancouver
Original here. And to read Hilary Reid’s presentation to Council at the casino hearings of 2011, click here.
Democracy consists, unfortunately, in citizens showing up to meetings. Sad fact, but true!
Please join us:
Chinese Cultural Centre in Chinatown (Stadium-Chinatown skytrain station)
7 pm, Wednesday February 9
(See the Facebook event page)
50 East Pender Street between Carrall and Columbia
(travel instructions to the site, click the link above)
Please come out. You will have fun, meet a mix of people, and feel good about helping us demonstrate our numbers. Bring your ideas and your concerns about the proposed Edgewater mega-casino.
If we approve this mega-casino in Vancouver—if this public land is effectively given away to a sketchy Vegas company on an endless 70 year lease—we will never be able to get rid of it. Is this the image we want for Vancouver, internationally? No other major Canadian city has put a casino in its downtown core, or even close to residential areas. Once we go down this path, we can’t turn around. They don’t just want to put this casino in our downtown, they want to make this the biggest casino in Western Canada, and to have it built by a company that has only ever built truck stop, highway-side, trailer park casinos. The City of Vancouver has not done studies that indicate what the true economic costs of a casino are, but they easily make up a sum in the millions. And for what, $17 million a year? That’s not enough of an inducement for Vancouver – that’s a pittance in the City budget. This is a bad idea. Come out and have your say.
Vancouver will only be forced to make the right decision if the citizens of Vancouver show up and get involved.
Posted in Edgewater Casino
Tagged BC Lottery Corp, BCLC, City of Vancouver, David Podmore, democracy, Edgewater, gambling, gaming expansion, mega-casino, Minister Coleman, Paragon Gaming, PavCo, public forum, public meeting, Rich Coleman