- BC Games
West Van council votes to study parking further, not rebuild tennis courts — for now
Tennis players lined the aisles of West Vancouver council chambers on Monday (Jan. 13) to demand three tennis courts that were converted to a parking lot be put back — as promised.
In November 2011, council voted in a closed meeting to build a parking lot in place of the tennis courts in Dundarave, but promised the courts would return once construction was complete on a retirement centre nearby.
Members of the West Vancouver Tennis Club were convinced they could once again play at the courts, located at 22nd Street and Marine Drive, now that the Westerleigh Retirement Residence is ready.
But finding a parking stall is an ongoing problem in the busy area that council wants to study — and the courts’ fate depends on their decision. Some residents have complained the 40 public parking stalls under the Westerleigh that were added to ease congestion aren’t enough for an area that is in close proximity to two churches, a handful of parks, small shops, a library and the West Van rec centre.
Council voted 5-2 to study the parking situation further.
This decision did not please some people in the crowd, including Rev. Trevor Fisher from St. Stephen’s Anglican Church located near the parking lot in question.
“A promise is a promise. You might not have sworn on a Bible, but you have an assurance,” he said. “Let’s be absolutely clear — the assurance was given back in 2011 that parking on the tennis courts was going to be for the duration of building program which is now the Westerleigh.”
Before the vote was made, Coun. Mary-Ann Booth said: “While this isn’t the biggest issue that has come before council, I believe its significance lies in the opportunity it presents to build trust. To prove that when we make our promise, we will do our upmost to keep that promise.”
But Coun. Trish Panz thinks the amount of parking should be further studied. “Letting it breathe just a little bit longer so that we have good information in front of us, I think, is actually valuable,” she said. “...We really do need to look at parking head on, and we’re going to have to make some tough decisions on that for sure because it does impact people who live close to the community centre.”