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Vancouver’s overlooked real estate crisis: industrial land

with Eric Aderneck (industrial and employment land expert)


Original premiere date: 6 December 2019

Vancouver has a problem! Hemmed in by water, mountains, agricultural land, the border and the Port of Vancouver, industrial land is severely squeezed.

Virtually no one is paying attention because industrial employment land isn’t sexy. It doesn’t capture headlines nor votes, and it’s complicated. Metro Vancouver is endeavouring to develop a plan, but with 21 different city and municipal governments – all with different agendas – addressing the many issues collectively is next to impossible.

It’s an important issue because without industrial lands that are available, affordable and adaptable to the changing needs of businesses of all sizes, the consequences will be felt on the roads, in the community, in the environment and in the economy.

As with residential and commercial property, the inspiration to come up with innovative solutions is dumped onto developers who have to weave their way through an increasingly complex set of rules, regulations and processes. Many of the design rules are set in the past and don’t take into account the need to build sites that go skyward and include some commercial office space.

It is projected that within the next four to five years, the Lower Mainland will simply run out of industrial lands. You may ask yourself, “Why should I care?” You don’t have to and most people dismiss it as a minor issue.

But Eric Aderneck, an expert in industrial and employment land use says, "There will be opportunity costs that are lost. Businesses that may want to expand can`t, and so they leave, and larger international organizations that may want to come to Vancouver don`t because there isn`t available space”.

We invited Eric Aderneck to join us for a Conversation That Matters about our need to think in innovative ways about the region’s industrial lands.

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