Report from City of Vancouver’s first Biltmore Social Housing meeting (January 8, 2014)

City Presentation, Brenda Prosken

The City of Vancouver held the first of two meetings on the Biltmore Social Housing project on Wednesday January 8th. The second City-organized meeting is scheduled for Saturday, January 11th, from 10am to noon at the Native Education College (285 East 5th Ave & Scotia). If the second meeting is in the same format as the first one, here’s what to expect:

  • 21 minutes of presentations
  • small group discussions
  • 29 minutes of group summaries (reporting out) and closing remarks

The small group discussions will be focused around answering the following 3 questions:

  1. What should the project partners consider related to managing the site?
  2. What should the project partners consider related to the tenants residing at the site?
  3. What should project partners and the community do to ensure a good relationship between the Biltmore site and the surrounding community?

At the end of the meeting there was no Q&A, no further discussion and the meeting was tightly controlled. There were no comment forms; rather there was a City appointed small group leader who took all of the notes and who reported out. The City of Vancouver distributed a printed 4-page summary of the project (available as a PDF document here) and also had a number of presentation panels on display.

Many questions were left unanswered and it was unclear when and how the City or the operator would answer the outstanding questions. The Biltmore is now on track to open in February of 2014. BC Housing has secured an agreement to lease the Biltmore hotel until 2019 and has an option to extend the lease until 2028.

RainCity Housing, the operator of the facility, will be selecting a Community Advisory Committee made up of 14 members. Attendees were encouraged to sign up to volunteer on this committee. The operator also developed a Terms of Reference, currently available in a draft format.

Please check back soon for a summary of all of the information provided by the City of Vancouver, by BC Housing and by the operator. We will also summarize the information we received at two last two RAMP-sponsored community events.

For reference, please also see our previous post about the Biltmore housing meetings and our post on Public Realm Improvements needed to improve the safety of the intersection at Kingsway and 12th Avenue.

CAC Biltmore

Additional City documents are available on the following webpage:


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