Please give your feedback on how we can achieve our community’s vision for the future. Look for the three Comment bubble to tell us what you think.
Safe & Welcoming
It’s an exciting time to call Vancouver home...
but how will we achieve our community’s vision for the future?
More people and more businesses means a greater demand for City services and a growing desire to have more places to live, work, shop, eat and spend our free time. However, the revenues that pay for City services and future amenities don’t keep up with the growing demand, costs or inflation. Our community aspires to further improve public safety, transportation, parks, affordable housing, cultural experiences and economic development in areas throughout the city. The City has worked with the community to develop a proposed service and funding package for a range of operating programs (services for people) and capital investments (improvements to assets like buildings and parks) focused on Economic Development, Parks and Public Safety. We need your feedback to help us continue to transform Vancouver into a place we are proud to call home.
Creating a place we are proud to call home
Guided by the community’s feedback, the City’s Strategic Plan sets forth a vision for Vancouver as an exceptionally vibrant, safe, welcoming and prosperous city. The plan includes ambitious goals for supporting economic development, arts and culture, transportation, infrastructure and parks improvements, public safety and taking care of the assets that we already have.
In the past few years, we have developed funding strategies for our streets and increasing police staffing and created a fund for supporting affordable housing and homelessness prevention initiatives.
We’ve also made public investments in planning and infrastructure - the first step to attract private development - for projects that grow our city’s economy and attract businesses, talent and jobs. Some recent successes include Esther Short Park and the surrounding area, the Waterfront, Grand Central, and Columbia Palisades in east Vancouver.
Currently, across our city, we have numerous parks that need renovation, areas that have been passed over by economic development, growing urgency for homeless services, and several buildings critical to our public safety in need of replacement.
We’ve made progress but more is needed to take care of what we have, ensure a strong future and achieve our community’s vision and goals.
Explore the interactive map below to see where park improvements, new and renovated fire stations, and economic vitality projects are planned. CLICK on an icon to see project details.
Economic Vitality Projects
Proposed capital and operating investments
- Renovate 13 neighborhood parks
- Redevelop 4 community parks
- At-risk youth program
- Expanded summer playground program
- Reduce cost barriers to programs
- Expand community events program
- Economic development initiatives
- Downtown clean/safe/beautification program
- Neighborhood grants program
- Arts, culture and heritage program
- Invest in three key community parks
- Multi-lingual outreach program
- Homeless/mental health outreach team
- Homelessness clean-up program
- Homeless facility operations
- EMS rapid response rescue units
- Fire prevention program
- Fire sprinkler program
- A dedicated problem- oriented policing unit
- Two new and three renovated fire stations
- A new public works operations center
- Traffic safety program
- Bike and pedestrian safety improvements
- Renovate eight neighborhood parks
Tell us what you think
CLICK on the to the right of the descriptions below to learn more about each of the proposed investment areas. Click here to see a detailed list. Afterward, please provide your thoughts in the survey below.
Based on the above descriptions, please provide your thoughts:
A sustainable, comprehensive funding plan is needed to achieve our community’s vision
Like many cities in Washington, Vancouver’s current tax system does not raise enough revenue to fund the increasing demand for and cost of basic services and facilities, like parks, public safety and projects that support our economic vitality. Inflation and increasing demand for services from population growth outpace our revenues and over time, this means lower levels of service for everyone.
By clearly identifying and understanding the investments needed for the future, the City can develop a well-planned funding strategy. The City has worked with community leaders to identify three possible funding approaches to maintain our service levels and fund our future vision.
Each scenario would raise about $28 million annually. View or print a PDF with information on all the scenarios.
Relies primarily on a property tax levy to fund capital infrastructure investments across the city. Stronger Vancouver programs and services would be funded through an increase in the per employee business license surcharge and an increase in the utility tax. The property tax increase to the average homeowner would be approx. $129.50/year for a home valued at $350,000. The cost of the average household city provided utility bill would increase by approx. $48/year.
Relies on a mixture of property taxes and business and occupation (B&O) taxes to fund capital infrastructure investments. The B&O tax and a small increase in the utility tax would fund Stronger Vancouver programs and services. The property tax increase to the average homeowner would be approx. $129.50/year for a home valued at $350,000. The cost of the average household city provided utility bill would increase by approx. $24/year. The cost to businesses would vary, please use the below calculator for more details.
Relies primarily on a business and occupation (B&O) tax to fund capital infrastructure investments throughout the city. Stronger Vancouver programs and services would be funded by the B&O tax and an increase to the utility tax. The existing per employee surcharge would be eliminated. The cost to businesses would vary, please use the below calculator for more details.
How well does each scenario measure up?
The ESC considered several principles when developing the proposed funding scenarios:
Fair: Attempts to raise dollars across sectors, users and customers in an attempt to not impact one particular group over another.
Sustainable: Keeps pace with inflation over time.
Simple: Helps to simplify the taxing structure.
Scalable: Able to grow with future needs.
Stable: Reliable and predictable revenue.
Equitable: Attempts to not disproportionately impact any one group or population.
To achieve the vision, multiple revenue tools will be required. Which of the various tools should be relied on more than others in the final combination? Click on the slider to indicate your preference.
Oct. 2018 - Feb. 2019
City Council workshop
Develop final recommendations to City Council
To request additional information or to request a presentation at your community meeting, please email: StrongerVancouver@cityofvancouver.us