The City of Vancouver is being petitioned by local action group the Carnegie Community Action Project (CCAP) to put a moratorium on new market development projects until a neighbourhood protection plan is in place, according a CCAP media released issued January 16.
Over the next few weeks, CCAP said it will continue to collect signatures on the streets of Downtown Eastside and Chinatown. The group said that more than 200 people, English-speaking and Chinese-speaking, have already signed the paper petition.
"We need clear binding policies that will protect and preserve Vancouver's Chinatown because the current development situation and transformation of the neighbourhood threaten to wipe Chinatown out," said CCAP's King-mong Chan, who facilitates CCAP's Chinatown Planning Group.
"We want Chinatown to be strong and revitalized but at present we are very concerned because instead we are seeing the loss of Chinatown's distinct character as well as its low-income housing being threatened as land values and property taxes continue to rise as a result of the development fever."
There is a meeting scheduled in March between the city's urban design panel and the Chinatown Historic Area Planning Committee.
City planner Kevin McNaney said planners were talking to the CCAP about changes to incorporate social housing, according to the Globe and Mail.
He added that the pace of development would slow after the glut of sites that were recently made available had been developed.
The online petition can be found at http://bit.ly/unite4chinatown.