Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Metro Vancouver CEO Warns of Industrial Land Shortage

By Mark Edward Nero

Port Metro Vancouver President and Chief Executive Officer Robin Silvester is calling for the creation of an industrial land reserve, saying that the issue of a shrinking industrial land base in Metro Vancouver poses a serious threat to the local and national economies.

“Metro Vancouver currently has a supply of industrial land that is sufficient to meet demand for up to 15 years at most,” Silvester said during a Nov. 28 speech to the Vancouver Board of Trade. “If we don’t act now, we will face a serious and imminent shortage with significant consequences.”

Studies indicate that 2,300 additional acres of industrial land will be needed in the gateway by 2025 to meet increasing cargo demand.

On the same day Silvester addressed the trade board, Port Metro Vancouver released its updated Land Use Plan, a key priority of which is to protect the remaining supply of industrial land within Port Metro Vancouver jurisdiction. The plan is similar to a municipal official community plan and identifies the types of uses that are appropriate throughout the port, a jurisdiction that borders 16 municipalities.

“This is an important document,” Peter Xotta, the port’s Vice President of Planning and Operations, said. “It sets out how Port Metro Vancouver will manage the land in our jurisdiction over the next 15 to 20 years, in response to growth in Canada’s trade.”

The plan, which took nearly three years to devise, was developed in consultation with more than 1,000 people representing municipalities, government agencies, environmental organizations, businesses, industries, and members of the public.

The document, among other things, illustrates Port Metro Vancouver’s ability to accommodate future growth in a socially, environmentally and economically sustainable manner. More information about the plan is available at http://www.portmetrovancouver.com/en/projects/LandUsePlan/FAQs.aspx