To the Preovolos family, I’m sorry.
I’m sorry I didn’t attend the council meeting and speak in favour of your zoning amendment. I’m sorry you had to be villainized by (people) who think it’s their duty to publicly shame their neighbours and generally suggest how unreasonable you must be to want to raise your kids in home with insulation and without rats running through your walls.
I’m sorry that you were led to believe that if you complied with the city’s policy of submitting your home for review against the evaluation checklist (developed by the city) you would be given a fair hearing based on the results. I’m sorry that you were lied to when you were told that "If a house receives an overall score of 60 per cent or less, demolition will be considered reasonable” - taken directly from the New Westmister guide to Queen Park Heritage Conservation Area.
I’m just sorry.
To mayor and council, it’s been just about two years since council adopted the Queen’s Park HCA bylaws, which changed the zoning for just about all the houses in Queens Park older than 1940. I recall, given the de facto manner in which the zoning was being applied, the public was told there would be a path to have homes reasonably reconsidered, which is the process the Preovolos family undertook in good faith. Instead of fairly addressing the Preovolos family’s application on its merits (i.e. giving it “reasonable consideration”), it was suggested that the system must be broken and that the checklist evaluation must be wrong.
The Preovolos did everything asked of them and Oct. 28, mayor and council said thank you, but we’re just not interested in hearing this right now for reasons that failed to address the application on its merits whatsoever.
This smacks of bad faith. The Preovolos family deserved better. We all deserve better.
James Silvester, New Westminster