Bike riders need to learn to share the road

Just because you ride a bike, that doesn’t put you on the side of the angels or make you better than the rest of us

Bike riders need to learn to share the roadIn Vancouver, my hometown, city council is using the COVID-19 pandemic to fulfil a long-held fantasy: the elimination of cars and the end of vehicle traffic throughout the city. While the rest of us are coping with one of the worst economic crisis in Canadian history and bungling along with reduced public transit and dwindling…

Ottawa doing too little to protect Canadians

For weeks, the government told us that we’re prepared for COVID-19. Its early actions demonstrated something entirely different

Ottawa doing too little to protect CanadiansProvide a timely response. Ensure transparency. Tell the truth. These are just some of the basic tenets of crisis communications, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his crisis response team would do well to take them to heart because, so far during the COVID-19 crisis, their statements and actions have missed the mark in every…

Dissecting Canada’s NHL underachievers

We could see as many as five Canadians teams in the playoffs – but more likely we’ll see two or three at this pace

Dissecting Canada’s NHL underachieversFor fans of Canada’s seven embattled National Hockey League teams, the man from Zamboni is a suitable talisman of their frustration. As most everyone now knows, a 42-year-old Zamboni driver – a kidney-transplant Zamboni driver – stepped in for the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night in Toronto to defeat the listless Leafs 6-3. When both…

A Vancouver community being built on conversation not conflict

A Vancouver community being built on conversation not conflictMore often than not in Vancouver’s real estate cauldron, developers are at logger heads with local residents trying to maintain the character of their community against the onslaught of new towers and increased density. Roadside rallies, raucous public hearings and lawsuits always seem to emerge as residents realise the magnitude of proposed plans, while development…

The retirement dilemma: city mouse or country mouse?

Part 1: Defining the attributes of your successful retirement community

The retirement dilemma: city mouse or country mouse?Who says you have to go on living in the same location when you retire? The choice is yours. City or country retirement is ultimately a personal decision. But it draws significantly on your prior life, and the skills and personal attributes you can bring to the retirement community you choose. How you retire is…

Vancouver’s absurd housing market shuts out millennials

Is the affordability crisis – and the lack of government intervention – a metaphor for something much worse?

Vancouver’s absurd housing market shuts out millennialsI want to describe Vancouver’s awful housing market as a metaphor for something else. I’ll reveal the ‘something else’ later in the column. For now, let’s just stick with Vancouver, the city I grew up in. When I was a little boy, our Dunbar neighbourhood had a broad cross-section of residents. Our family’s cleaning lady…

High-speed rail case difficult to make

Governments and taxpayers need to look more closely at several factors, including transportation, impact and costs

High-speed rail case difficult to makeListen to the promoters and you would think the Vancouver-to-Seattle-to-Portland high-speed rail proposal is a great idea. For many, high-speed rail is a panacea that promises to solve all of our transportation and environmental problems. But governments and taxpayers need to look more closely at several factors, including transportation, impact and costs. High-speed rail has…

Rising from the ashes to achieve greatness

It hurts to be rejected or see a dream come to an end, but it shouldn't impact our ability to live with integrity and find success

Rising from the ashes to achieve greatnessWe all face disappointments and challenges. We don’t get picked for a team, we don’t get a promotion, we’re turned down by a potential lover or we see a dream come to an end. What’s important in life isn’t what happens to us, however. It’s how we respond. Great people aren’t without problems. They’re people…

Toronto, Vancouver downtown office vacancy lowest in North America

Toronto, Vancouver downtown office vacancy lowest in North AmericaCanada's office market posted positive absorption of nine million square feet in the 12 months ending June 30 – significantly more than the nearly six million square feet absorbed in the prior 12-month period, says Avison Young's Mid-Year 2019 Global Office Market Report released on Tuesday. The report said demand was strongest in Toronto, Montreal and…

Did Canada just dodge a war with the Philippines?

The garbage at the centre of an international dispute was to arrive in Vancouver on the weekend

Did Canada just dodge a war with the Philippines?Canadians have fought a lot of tough characters over the years. Sudanese warriors of the Mahdi, Boer guerrillas, armies of the German, Austrian and Japanese empires, Nazi SS, Red Chinese, North Koreans, Serbs, Croats and Taliban all came to rue the day they messed with the boys under the Maple Leaf banner. Heck, our navy…

The Trans Mountain truth defies activists’ claims

For an issue that’s been so polarizing, the arguments against the pipeline expansion are surprisingly flawed

The Trans Mountain truth defies activists’ claimsNothing has been as divisive to national unity as the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion in the 25 years since the Quebec independence referendum. But unlike separation, this project – approved again last week by the federal government – is good for the country and will benefit all Canadians. Moving to Vancouver two years ago from…

Vancouver’s bike-walk bias is costly and unjustified

Money budgeted for an elevated greenway for walkers and bikers should go to housing the homeless or easing traffic congestion

Vancouver’s bike-walk bias is costly and unjustifiedVancouver is a great city. For people like me who use their feet for most of their transportation, it’s wonderful. But sometimes city decision-makers go overboard. For recreation and exercise, there’s the 28-km seawall, part of which circles Stanley Park. It’s been voted the best place to run in Canada. There’s also the nine-km Arbutus…

Sitting on the dock of the bay, watching an idle ferry

The Canadian response to being stranded for 11 hours on a BC ferry? Free food, cheers and applause!

Sitting on the dock of the bay, watching an idle ferry“Please be advised that the next sailing from Langdale to Horseshoe Bay has been delayed by at least four hours. Those passengers wishing instead to return to Powell River, please pull over to the right-hand side as you exit the ferry, and you will be guaranteed a return trip. …” “Hmmmmm. What’s that all about?”…

Suing oil companies over climate change will only hurt taxpayers

Precious little good will can come from Victoria city council's campaign, but it will certainly cost a great deal of money

Suing oil companies over climate change will only hurt taxpayersThe City of Victoria wants to round up municipalities to sue oil companies for damages from climate change. Not only is such a case virtually impossible to prove, it’s also full of rich ironies. Weather-related damages, termed “perils” in Canadian insurance plans, are more commonly called acts of God. How ironic that environmentalists envision the…

Cleaning up Vancouver’s “rat’s nest of rot”

Single-family houses in the city are now deposit boxes. How did we get here and how can we restore balance?

Cleaning up Vancouver’s “rat’s nest of rot”It’s time for broad review of the dirty money games played in the casinos and on the high streets of the raincoast’s ‘capital' city. B.C. Attorney General David Eby recently reported that upwards of $2 billion in dirty money laundering has occurred in Vancouver casinos and luxury real estate over the past year. He characterized…
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