Mayor blames “NIMBYs” for high home prices
May 11 2018
The mayor of the Metro Vancouver suburban community of Port Coquitlam told a Vancouver real estate conference last week that not-in-my-backyard (NIMBY) activists help to keep home starts down and home prices high.
Mayor Greg Moore – who will step down as mayor this November – said there are several reasons new homes cost so much in Metro Vancouver, but most pressing is a public hearing process hindered by opponents to virtually every development proposal.
“Never does a large contingent of ‘yes’ come out to public hearings,” he told a packed ballroom of developers, realtors and other stakeholders at the Vancouver Real Estate Forum. “It’s a public speaking contest for the ‘no’ side.”
He said mayors and councils struggle to get an accurate read on the true public mood for any given project when their chambers are always filled with opponents to development.
“I’ve got 50 angry people in my council chambers saying ‘this is a bad idea’, and I’ve got two people saying ‘it’s a good idea’. What would you do? You would probably say ‘I’m not sure this is a good idea,’ ” he said. “Is there a better way to go through a rezoning process that will help, I think, frankly speed up a lot of development side of the equation?”
There’s no apparent solution, he said, “but I think it’s something we need to have a serious conversation about.”
Moore added, “We as politicians are getting the crap kicked out of us by the NIMBYism. We need the other side to come out.”
The benchmark home price in Port Coquitlam is $785,600 as of April, up 22 per cent from a year earlier.