Park Board candidates were asked what there stance is on Vansplash. The replies from those that answered are below. Last updated Oct 13th, 2018.
From: John Irwin
Date: Sat, Oct 13, 2018, 12:45 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
VanSplash is a good effort at public participation for planning the future
pools for the Park Board’s aquatic facilities, and provides for planning
some extra facilities, such as a pool at Kitsilano Community Centre, that
are desirable. However, the proposed pool at Kitsilano Community Centre
should be a neighbourhood-sized pool.
The public’s participation in VanSplash should be strengthened and
improved as it moves forward.
Community centres need to strengthen their role as local cooling centres
during extreme heat. This requires retention of local pools (Byng, and
Templeton pools) and the provision of other pools (especially Mt. Pleasant
Pool, but also the proposed Kits pool).
COPE Park Board commissioners will work to expand Vancouver’s pools, while
maintaining local pools (Byng Pool, and Templeton Pool).
I also raised the retention of local pools and the rebuilding of Mt.
Pleasant Pool at the Park Board Capital Plan meeting held this August. We
came close to having Mt. Pleasant pool made a reality by becoming part of
the proposed Capital Plan (which will hopefully be passed by voters). The
motion was ruled out of order, unfortunately.
For the next capital plan (2022), we will work to ensure that funds are in
place for expansion of pools and the rebuilding of Mt. Pleasant Pool.
Thanks for all your work for the aquatic community,
COPE Park Board Candidate
From: Ann-Marie Copping
Date: Fri, Oct 12, 2018 at 10:37 AM
Subject: RE: Vansplash
As a former lifeguard, who taught adults to swim at the Y on 49th and the mother of a Special Olympic swimmer, our Vancouver pools are really important to me.
I am running for Park Board with the NPA team who has been and will continue to be a champion for existing and new pools in Vancouver.
Ann- Marie Copping
NPA Park Board Candidate
From: Leo Heba
Date: Mon, Oct 8, 2018 at 11:31 AM
Subject: Re: Vansplash – YES Vancouver Leo Heba
Thanks for the email. One of the reasons I wanted to run for Park Board was to work to add more recreational sports and organized sports opportunities. After reviewing the Van Splash document myself, I’m glad the PB sent it back to staff for a redo and look forward to what the new report brings forth.
I believe (and know from personal experience as a coach) that we should have more local, neighbhourhood and community access to recreation (swimming, gymnastics etc.). Therefore, I don’t agree with how the report came to the conclusion of shutting down smaller pools to make bigger destination pools. I am not opposed to having a ‘destination’ pool as it would serve many purposes including provide a facility for competitive training, but I do believe that smaller and more local recreational facilities are vital and important to communities, families, seniors and athletics. I look forward to the new report which is supposed to lay out more clearly the views of coaches, staff, seniors, families and communities that rely on the neighbourhood pools. However taking into account all the information presented in the previous report, I’m not in favour of closing smaller pools to create one big pool.
Whatever plan is brought forth, as a Park Board Commissioner, I would want clarity in terms of how public consultation was done, planning in terms of opportunities for program/sport growth (swimming, diving, etc), population growth, transit/access, and diversity in infrastructure that benefits and relates to diversity in community (meaning is the plan comprehensive of people with disabilities, families, seniors and local community needs).
I hope I answered your question, and gave you some insight into how I would approach the findings in the upcoming report.
From: Tricia Barker
Date: Sat, Oct 13, 2018 at 3:39 PM
Sorry for the late reply on this… but I have been talking to so many people about this issue!
All the candidates running for the Park Board position with the NPA fully support the work that John Coupar, Casey Crawford and Sarah Kirby-Yung did in regards to this.
As you might know, they proposed 12 amendments to re-establish the importance of pools!!
We are firmly in favour of keeping our neighbourhood pools.
And for me personally, I work with seniors and older adults and realize the importance these pools play in their health and well-being.
The major part of my platform is to a voice for seniors at the Park Board. Clearly this is an issue where a strong voice is required to speak on their behalf.
I hope to be that voice.
Thanks for doing the work you do on their behalf…
NPA candidate for Vancouver Park Board
Writer / Photographer
Go Big Or Go Home – Owner/Trainer
Twitter – @TriciaBarker49 & @VanCityPenguin
From: Jamie Lee Hamilton
Date: Sun, Sep 30, 2018 at 1:09 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
I support outdoor neighborhood pools. We need way more and if elected I will fight tooth and nail that all neighborhoods have an outdoor pool.
From: Jason Galloway – Coalition Vancouver
Date: Mon, Oct 1, 2018 at 11:40 AM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Thank you for your email. Here are my points to hopefully answer your question.
-Coalition Vancouver will fight to keep community pools for certain.
-Pools are for communities and neighbourhoods. Walking to the pool is important, neighbourhoods are important.
-Coalition Vancouver is a neighbourhood first party.
-Coalition Vancouver will also lower the access costs by 30%.
Caucus Whip & Parks Board Candidate
From: Cliff Relph
Date: Tue, Oct 2, 2018 at 7:42 AM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
VanSplash has been great overall. I really admire the time it took to project to the future what we’re going to need in the upcoming years, and there’s a lot to like about where we are headed. I like the suggestions of outdoor pools, co-locating outdoor pools near indoor ones, and introducing some outdoor hot tubs. I think a lot of their methodologies in their surveys was done well. That being said, I’m concerned a bit with the closure of the Templeton and Lord Byng pool, but it does look like it would be leading somewhere good. Long term I think it’s going to be good, but short term it’s going to bring a few problems. I want pools to be accessible to everyone in Vancouver and their closures do cause some problems to that end, but there are some problems.
Granted, my concerns about our pools is a bit selfish. I also use our public pools. Me and a group of my friends even to head out to Killarney every two weeks. I want good, accessible, sustainable pools in Vancouver because I’ve experienced how they help people.
Thank you for asking,
PS – On Wednesday I participated in a meet and greet at Dunbar Community Center for Parks Board candidates. I was incredibly impressed with a group there that are actively participating in trying to save Byng Pool. Community groups such as this are incredibly important as we look to the future of our city. I’m in support of finding ways to save Byng pool. But, with it being constructed in 1974, it may need upgrades to bring it forward and make sure it is sustainable, good for the environment, and meets the needs of the community. We already know how important it is for the members of the community, and that’s one step already taken.
From: Winnie Siu
Date: Tue, Oct 2, 2018 at 12:49 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Coalition Vancouver are a neighbourhood first party. We are for communities and neighbourhoods. We believe walking to the pool is important and neighbourhoods are important. We will help fight to preserve community pools such as Lord Byng and Templeton pools and further if elected, we will lower the access fees by 30%!
Coalition Vancouver – Park Candidate
From: Gwen Giesbrecht
Date: Thu, Oct 4, 2018, 10:22 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Thanks for your question. My stance on Vansplash is that it is a report that explored the building of “destination pools” and came with questions to the merit of retention and replacement of community pools. I support the merit of community pools.
As a life long swimmer, in both pools and open water, I benefited from community pools growing up. The skills acquired then have proven to be the way I am able to stay fit, at my local pool.
I am in support of easy to access, local pools. I believe that a community pool brings together folks of all ages and builds community connections.
In Vancouver ( due to our temperate climate) we have the value added opportunity of outdoor swimming;
Replace outdoor pools that have been lost, improve open water destination facilities and reduce fees/ transit/parking costs for residents.
There is much that could, and I feel should, be done to build swimming and aquatic excercise awareness. This could start with collaboration between the Vancouver Park Board and the Vancouver School Board to reinstate universal, free from charge, basic swim and water safety instruction for all school aged children.
If you would like to hear more from me on this topic, please be in touch, ( meantime…everyone in the pool!)
COPE candidate for Vancouver Board of Parks & Recreation
Date: Thu, Oct 4, 2018, 11:01 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Thank you for your email and question.
My team and I have adopted the policy that we put our communities first, over the big business money and special interest. We have listened and heard that the majority of the community prefer community pools over having 1 or 2 megapool complex. As the Vice-President at Hillcrest Community Centre, I can understand the need for community pools. As community pools are closed down in favour of a couple megapools, this means less accessibility and also rising costs because of “the monopoly”. As a grandson, I value the accessibility my grandparents experience when the walk to the community pool to use the hot tub and sauna. We should keep it that way. We will not be closing pools. We will be improving and renovating existing structures to make them into something our community can be proud.
Thank you for planning to vote at this upcoming election. This is one of the most important elections with many things at stake. Coalition Vancouver is 100% for the people. Our Parks team has the most experience and also the most diverse. In addition to our Increase Accessibility platform, our policies also include:
1) Clean Parks Plan – The needles and garbage at our parks are unacceptable. We will store pride in our city parks again by doubling cleaning crews to make parks safer for children, families, and individuals
2) Strengthen Community Involvement in Community Centres – create closer relationships with local schools to increase facility use. And to stop the proposed Sunset Clause in regards to the JOA that aims to put an end of community voices and volunteerism in how our community centre is managed
3) Restore Financial Accountability and Transparency to Parks Board – there has not been an annual review of the budget in years. The public have the right to see where their tax dollars are going.
4) Improve our Parks – review our park’s asset and ensure that each region has all the amenities it needs.
Thank you again for sending your question. Feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns.
Ray En-Jui Chang
Parks Board Commissioner Candidate
“Last on the Ballot”
From: Stuart Mackinnon
Date: Sat, Oct 6, 2018, 5:05 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Thank you for writing. One of the issues that got me into parks advocacy nearly 20 years ago was the closure of neighbourhood pools – Hastings, Sunset, and ultimately Mount Pleasant. Neighbourhood facilities build community. This is why I voted to send the whole Van Splash report back to staff to rebuild it so that the entire report truly reflected the needs and wishes of the community.
Green Party candidate for Park Board.
From: Rick Hurlbut
Date: Thu, Oct 4, 2018, 10:29 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
I’ve been attending Park Board meetings for the past 2 years, and that includes any community open houses, which includes those for VanSplash. I was at the meetings where Park Board considered the report from the outside consultant, and listened to the impassioned speakers who were concerned about proposed closures at Templeton and Lord Byng.
I grew up in Toronto, and have great memories of walking to my neighbourhood pool on hot summer days. I firmly believe that this should remain our focus, that pools should serve neighbourhoods and should be accessible, on foot, by any responsible kid willing to walk 15 or 20 minutes. They should be just as accessible to seniors needing low-stress exercise, and adults wanting to stay fit.
There is definitely an economy of scale to building mega destination pools, and there are certainly those who enjoy the amenities of such facilities. But our local pools should not be sacrificed in the name of “cost per swim,” which was the report’s rational for another Hillcrest.
I’m particularly worried that staff will attempt to bring back essentially the same report once the new Park Board is elected, hoping all the new faces around the table are unaware of what has transpired. I’m not an incumbent, and there are only 3 incumbents seeking reelection to Park Board. But in this regard, I’m as close to an incumbent as you’ll find. It’s best to consider someone who has put in the hours, who has been in the room, and who has engaged with pool users when marking your ballot.
If, at some future date the money and desire remains for another mega pool, perhaps it can be built. But not before refurbishing our existing facilities, and ensuring neighbourhood needs have been met for indoor, outdoor, and splash pools.
I welcome input from any of your group, and I’m happy to answer any of your specific questions.
ProVancouver Candidate for Park Board
From: Mathew Kagis
Date: Fri, Oct 5, 2018 at 4:41 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Hi: Thanks for the question. Vansplash… A large corporate entity is brought in to do a policy analysis of Vancouver pools. Said large corporate entity happens to ALSO build large mega pools. Then, big shock, said large corporate entity RECOMMENDS the building of a mega pool. All sarcasm aside. The recommendation was justified by using a “per swim cost” formula. And, while I’m all for spending taxpayer dollars efficiently, that should not happen in cases where it ignores the needs & desires of the community & area neighborhoods.
I have spoken to many people in my local area, our nearest 2 pools are Templeton & Renfrew. I’ve heard a lot of support for keeping & maintaining both of those facilities. Further, I’ve heard a desire in the wider community for more outdoor pools scattered about local areas. As someone looking to be elected to represent the wishes of the community, I will do just that.
Please get in touch if you have any follow up questions.
Work Less Party
From: Cameron Zubko
and Shamim Shivji
Date: Thu, Oct 11, 2018, 10:13 AM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Thank you for your email. We believe that the Park Board worked very hard on Vansplash, including conducting an 18-month city-wide consultation. However, even after the Park Board’s best efforts we recognize that Vansplash had some issues and that’s why it will be re-evaluated in 2019 with a new round of consultation and the involvement of an advisory committee.
With regards to Lord Byng Pool:
1. We believe that both destination pools and community pools can co-exist within the new strategy;
2. We are also aware that Vancouver’s pool facilities are in high demand and as such, we believe that the city needs to build more pools, not close existing ones.
Given these guiding principles, Vision Vancouver Park Board Commissioners look forward to the recommendations of the citizens advisory committee and working with all stakeholders to revise the Vansplash strategy.
Park Board Candidates
From: Camil Dumont
Date: Tue, Oct 9, 2018 at 11:09 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
I was at the Dunbar Candidates meeting tonight and I met a lovely group of what I would call “local pool activists” – a great and engaged crowd! I had many fun chats.
I do not believe that fancy destination pools serve the same purpose or community function as smaller neighbourhood pools, new or long-standing. I think we should do our best to keep neighbourhood pools well-maintained and valued as the connection spaces they are. I think there is some room for the larger Hillcrest type facilities, if the money is there, but certainly not at the expense of community hubs like Byng, Templeton or what have you.
We need to re-ivest in existing infrastructure. We need to closely consult and share, with as much transparency as possible, the workings of those operations with the communities that use them. We are a public body, after all.
I hope that helps answer your question.
all my best,
PS – I mentioned this to couple people tonight and I want to add it on here. I know it was born out of conflict but the engagement and community cohesion that has been built by the users of the local pools (I’m thinking of Byng in particular) in response to the feeling that their community pool was/is under threat is really great to see. It’s not easy, of course, but it’s exactly why democracy is so important. I was moved to see the energy and the commitment of the pool-goers I met tonight.
From: Chris Fuoco
Date: Mon, Oct 8, 2018, 1:41 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
tough to keep up with all the emails, almost there. Sorry for the delay and thank you for asking me about my and my party’s views in such a big election.
I Myself and my Vancouver 1st party (really just a bunch of educated and action oriented, principled fed up citizens) are in favour of the following.
Neighbourhood pools for children, school groups, seniors, etc to learn the essential life skill of swimming whilst also having local access of their neighbourhood pools for leisurely swims and healthy living. So this means-we would look at the possibility of resurrecting pools such as Templeton, Bing and Kensington. NOT closing them because we are only in favour of a Mega pool complex. We would also resurrect/reestablish summer neighbourhood outdoor pools to build on community and neighbourhood recreation.
However, we do see Vancouver as a world class city and believe our facilities have not kept up with the times, we are in favour of building a mega pool or two in an appropriate area yet to be determined in my opinion through community consultation and education.
In Summary, we need to build pools and look for ways to finance them properly and keep them on line. If they can’t be retro-fitted we need to rebuild from the ground up. If a Mega structure is desired we need to make sure this is an addition not just a replacement of the old.
Sincerely, Chris Fuoco, Vancouver 1st.
From: Greg Edgelow
Date: Mon, Oct 8, 2018 at 8:34 PM
Subject: Re: Vansplash
Thank you for your email and a very relevant and important topic since I am an avid swimmer and have swam in most of he pools around Vancouver and beaches over the past 35 years.
I formerly worked at the Hastings, Britannia and Templeton community ctr associations in the gym/wt rooms. I used to work at kiwassa neighborhood house and have just been appointed to the board of the Mount Pleasant neighborhood house and was Athletics & Recreation coordinator long ago at SFU.
Im currently operations supervisor for public works for Tseil – Waututh nation. I won the Canadian sport athlete leadership award, SFU outstanding Alumni award and just inducted into the BC sports hall of fame, Indigenous Gallery because of being an Olympian and Commonwealth Games Gold medalist.
needless to say where my alliances, understanding and focus lies. I am in agreement with these comments:
The vision is supported by principles to:
1. Recognize that water is only one component of the experience;
2. Expand the definition of “aquatics” to include beaches, wading pools, spray parks and
new innovate aquatic experiences;
3. Enhance social inclusion throughout aquatic experiences;
4. Support community and personal well-being;
As well as the following goals:
1. Continue to increase annual swims per capita;
2. Accommodate Vancouver’s growing and aging population;
3. Provide a wide range of vibrant and engaging aquatic experiences;
4. Provide aquatic experiences that are accessible to all;
5. Promote and encourage active living through aquatics;
6. Provide flexible and functional facilities;
7. Establish sustainability targets for aquatics;
8. Increase connection to nature in all aspects of aquatics.
9. Continue to increase the pool inventory and upgrade without consolidating or eliminating existing pools
But I would add that we do not reduce the total number of pools but increase and continue to update, upgrade and enhance our local, unique, community based swimming pools.
I am only in favour of destination pools that can serve larger groups, new programs, local jobs and create new tourism revenues, but not at the expense of eliminating existing community pools as a consolidation strategy.
we need to find a way to continue to finance our existing pools that have developed a cult like community following of friends and family who feel comfortable in the smaller, more intimate, local pools that represent the diversity of the communities they serve, but also those who travel to swim.
For Immediate Release
Oct 4, 2018
Olympian & Community Leader Running for Vancouver Parks Board Commissioner
Greg Edgelow, 1992 Olympian and 1994 Commonwealth Games Gold medalist has fought many difficult fights and represented Vancouverites, BC and Canada for many years as a national team athlete, but running in the Civic elections is one off the toughest challenges he has embarked upon. Greg is running for Vancouver Parks Board Commissioner under the ProVancouver banner. Greg’s success on the mats is historical record and his volunteer efforts in the community and non-profit organizations has spanned a quarter century, but “asking for citizens to support you because they believe in you is humbling and rewarding” says Edgelow, “and that is what keeps me going”. “I have always had a community, sport or civic responsibility in mind to give back and support others” indicated Greg. “A lot of good people supported me as a youth and adult in school and sport where bullying kick-started my wrestling career, and I want to ensure children, youth and others are given that opportunity too. Sport and recreation was my pathway to combat bullying in school in grade 8” commented Greg. “Parks, Gardens, Beaches, Arts & Recreation is the best Civic avenue for me to help make a difference in our communities by making good decisions and investments that will eliminate or reduce barriers inhibiting participation of children, youth and seniors in parks, gardens & recreation facilities” stated Greg. A promise Edgelow is making is to facilitate community engagement sessions every month for the year to reach every community centre and continue with at least one community round table a month, each year thereafter. Candidates are often fearful that they may be asked to stand up for an initiative that is indigenous to that centre or region. Edgelow will seek out those issues, discuss them, share with the Parks Board or City Council and find strategies to resolve or address them.
Edgelow was recently inducted into the Indigenous Gallery at the BC Sports Hall of Fame for his outstanding sport successes is a coach, a sport & non-profit organization volunteer, a 1996 Outstanding Alumni winner from SFU and recipient of the 1999 Canadian Sport Athlete Leadership award where he was chosen over Wayne Gretzky because of his sport excellence and investment of his time into community. Greg has served in numerous boards including Sport BC, Mount Pleasant Business Improvement Association, Simon Fraser Alumni Association, Blanket BC and was recently appointed to the Mount Pleasant Neighborhood House Board of Directors. Greg has also worked in the local communities like the Community Centre Associations of Britannia, Hastings and Templeton and was the Children’s Breakfast Program and Food Bank Coordinator at Kiwassa Neighborhood House.
“Parks, Arts & Recreation is an investment, not an expense. There are true and demonstrated dividends, now and long into the future. Recreation, Arts, Sport and Physical Activity is a right for all children. Children who engage in more extracurricular and physical activity do better in school, more likely to stay in school and graduate. We need to invest now and continue or pay dearly for the rest of our lives!” “This also means investing in our seniors!”
Currently Greg is an Operations Supervisor, Public Works on the North Shore where managing facilities and grounds would serve well with the task of managing Vancouver’s 230 parks and 24 community centres.
Edgelow’s platform is all about listening to and investing back into the Vancouver’s unique and diverse communities by strategically investing in its widespread parks & recreation infrastructure to ensure no barriers to access and affordability for all, but also safe and clean. Greg’s key messages are based on his personal experiences and especially listening to the citizens of many local hamlets of Vancouver. It will be almost 50 years to the date upon election time that Edgelow’s biological father won a seat in the Edmonton Civic Elections for School Trustee.
Greg Edgelow’s Top 22 Talking Points & Key Messages for Parks Commissioner:
1. Employ strategies to ensure parks, gardens, beaches & recreation facilities are safe, clean, accessible, affordable and welcoming that includes more park rangers, more garbage cans & cleaning staff
2. Explore new and novel revenue streams to augment operational costs to reduce barriers inhibiting participation of children and seniors in recreation facilities by exploring more fee-free programs and services
3. Support community recreation association autonomy in managing their community facilities and developing programs that support community needs into perpetuity
4. Develop a long-term strategy to increase environmental footprint by developing more green space and convert to multi-functional park space
5. Parks Commissioners to commit to monthly community engagement activities with meaningful public consultation to help make more informed decisions on what matters to the community
6. Parks Board Commissioners challenged to commit to visiting every community center per annum to be more learned on broader issues in the recreation centre portfolio & not just liaise with a few centres
7. Commission a review of the maintenance strategy in parks & recreation facilities & where unsubstantiated disparity occurs, advocate equitable investment where fiscal deficiencies have been identified
8. Advocate increased capital investment to seismically retrofit & renovate dilapidated facilities
9. Commitment to ensure long-term, sustained investment strategy in VanDusen Botanical Gardens & Bloedel Conservatory and revisit new opportunities to manage maintenance costs of vehicles for mobility challenged visitors
10. Increase total footprint of dog parks in park portfolio & create more environmentally relevant off-leash dog compounds to enhance canine experience and reduce pack roaming activity
11. Review VanSplash & ensure strategies in place to upgrade aging pools including Templeton and New Brighton, respecting uniqueness of local cultures and traditions and commit to building 1 new outdoor pool in next 5 years with consideration of Mount Pleasant without consolidating or eliminating pools
12. Develop a strategy to promote the features, benefits & value of parks, gardens, beaches & recreation facilities to the public so they become champions of Parks & Recreation
13. Stop encroachment of new pay parking in parks and around recreation facilities & propose a new license plate recognition strategy that provides complimentary parking for Vancouver residents
14. Advocate a strategic approach to immediately reinvest the profit from concessions into better upkeep of concessions, washrooms and changerooms
15. Ensure good stewardship of healthy choices by ensuring locally provided, affordable, healthy and diverse selections of food are available at all concessions
16. Review options to create new skateboarding parks in creative and unique locations across the city
17. Develop a long-term strategy that increases community utilization of Vancouver golf parks while supporting the existing course length, but also maximizes creative utilization of the entire park footprint for green, non-golf initiatives
18. Initiate review of Park Board investment in Burrard Civic Marina to determine disparity between marina fees and budgeted operational & maintenance costs & initiate a new marina capital & maintenance plan
19. Initiate process to review, recommend and develop new and novel public & private partnerships that drive new investment funding into Parks & Recreation portfolio to reduce increased user costs
20. Support a new community driven initiative to reclaim Vancouver’s park spaces from illegal sales activities, squatters and ensure the safety of citizens & their pets from needles and biohazards
21. Champion the consideration of a new branding of the Parks Board to “Parks, Arts & Recreation”
22. Commission a comprehensive review of the existing parkland and facilities square footage and subsequent changes over the past 35 years as it relates to the increased densification and population growth of Vancouver. Identify correlations and propose recommendations accordingly
For more information please contact:
Greg Edgelow: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com Cell: 778-989-0287
Greg Edgelow Wikipedia