Why Burnaby Residents Are Furious With Metrotown Mall Demolition Plans

Culture
Metrotown Mall

While some people are intrigued that plans to take down Metropolis at Metrotown mall are set in action, many residents are particularly distraught – and for good reason.

Plans to take down the mall include a great deal more than just demolishing a shopping centre. Indeed, Burnaby City Council unanimously voted to take down the province’s largest shopping mall and completely transform the area around it.

Metrotown Mall And Population Growth

The move comes as the city’s population continues to grow at an exponential rate. Restructuring was deemed necessary in order to withstand the increase; however, not everyone feels the plans are in their best interests.

CTV News reports that housing advocates estimate that the development could displace upwards of 6,000 people who currently reside in low-income housing.

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During the Burnaby City Council meeting on July 24th affordable housing advocates from the Stop Demovictions campaign staged a protest that eventually had to be shut down by police. Protesters successfully delayed the vote at first, forcing the meeting to adjourn until peace was brought into the building, but they weren’t successful in stopping the vote from going through.

Police eventually broke up the protest warning the advocates that they would be arrested if they continued chanting and preventing the progress of the meeting.

CTV News quoted Ivan Drury, an organizer with Stop Demovictions who blasted council: “They do it July 24, the last council meeting before they all go on summer vacation. That means that these councillors who just made this decision won’t be vulnerable to scrutiny from the media. They’ll all be off in Hawaii or wherever they go for their summer vacation and they’ll come back in a month hopefully when it’s forgotten.”

The protesters felt that the vote should have been delayed until further consideration had been factored into the final decision, but the council felt pressure from population growth.

Metrotown Mall

Photo: City of Burnaby

The area is expected to welcome 125,000 new residents by 2041, and the demand for housing will be steep. The city plan indicates that “The intent is to transform the more suburban shopping areas into vibrant, pedestrian and transit-oriented, mixed-use developments with diverse housing, employment, service, and recreation opportunities,”

While the plan was unanimously voted on, it won’t come into effect for quite some time. Some estimates say that developments could take up to 40 years.

Where do you stand on the city’s future plans? Sound off in the comments below.

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  • Destroying the mall is going back to people driving and creating congestion by building new roads. This should never have even made it to a voting stage.

    As for the rubbish rental buildings, ALL of those buildings have another 40 years of life in them if they wanted, they were all built between 1940 and 1960, but if the city lets them get too old, they become “heritage” properties, and become harder to destroy. So while I have no love for these old buildings, Burnaby wants to reduce the size of the units by 25% in doing so, and build these ugly “narrow tower with a podium of unusable townhouses” at street level.

    Nobody who lives in these buildings can afford to live in their replacements. At the very least, those who live in them currently should be given replacement housing by the developer to avoid the current trend of people just being put out on the street. Even adopting Vancouver’s “replace destroyed rental units with more rental units” is better than the status quo.

    Meanwhile the existing towers are half empty. Being purposely empty or kept as AirBnB’s.

  • Canadian BC

    Could you stop making news with those low income people. I don’t like every time I open newspaper to read about them.
    The Burnaby needs to develop . Period.
    125000 new residents are going to come and 6000 are crying can’t pay rent.
    Go somewhere else where you can pay. I don’t want to pay for you.
    I would like to live in north Vancouver by the waterfront and have a private beach .sorry I can’t afford and I accept that.
    I am not furious about low income people don’t getting free housing. I don’t care about them att all

  • Christina

    Wow. That is a prime example of how people should never think. We need to help low income people, not ignore them and act like they’re nothing. This is canada, we are supposed to help each other out, get with it and stop being so evil and self centred. Your comment makes me sick.

  • germaine whitford

    Yea. No bad idea for the current people who live there and have to hear building for 40 year’s is going to lose allot more than low income people. The rich who paid for the places that just got bult there was clearly a waste of money and time to build a new one

  • Pemeten Langaker

    I believe if Metrotown or Metropolis as it’s said now decides to take down all of metropolis then there’s going to be a lot of disgruntled customers they are going to have to go without Canadian Superstore, McDonald’s, & the post office some of these may not be so important to 1 but to be life savings to another I believe that there should be a voice not allowing people to go on vacation at the end of August going into the Indian summer going into September taking off going to Hawaii is not facing people who needs a chat lightly on this subject the subject of taking down Metropolis Metrotown we are not even at Christmas and they are making this choice with no vote from the General Public what is going to be replaced people’s condo??? That is ridiculous… You’ve gotten rid of Save-On-Foods and other great store leaving once the construction is done stores that are smaller I’m inconvenience and disappointing make it to us if you are to re do Metropolis ie Superstore and not doing this at the beginning of September through December 24th 2017 that would be absolutely crazy if you began it now because Christmas will be here faster then you know AKA it’s already September 2017… I’m trying to say this very calmly and I’m trying to think how I’m to tell you not to be can begin Construction this month… Metropolis AKA Eaton Centre Metrotown now known as Metropolis Metrotown has survived losing Save-On-Foods at one point with the roof coming down and luckily not hurting anyone losing Eaton’s and stores after that not being able to survive… People that work for these companies AKA chapters the post office or the enormous Superstore they need to be transferred to be their jobs in different areas now in your choice to take down Metropolis I hope you are not replacing Metropolis with condos as Metrotown is known as the second biggest mall in Canada AKA to Edmond’s Mall we want to keep this change the structure leave the mall in it and have parking and another version of Superstore and all the little stores like Nike sports & McDonald’s & Fido/Telus… Shoes to bring up maybe 20 and above stories on top of a two-floor mole including two floors of parking Natalie president buy the purse customers of metropolis and now choosing another name as you demolish a wonderful mall area for adults children friends and Santa or chapters or all the people on Rollerblades everyone smiles when they come into the mall I smile myself and other people when they’re looking at something that they had just bought at Nike or from Superstore demolition takes a long time to clean up and I know you probably want to put billion dollar condos into this place by the space is for a mall do not disappoint or start demolition without months in advance of description of what you doing what you replacing it with and how you deal with it when it’s going down this needs to be taken lightly and slowly as people do not deal with change well because Metropolis has been there before the SkyTrain ever was and you’re going to have to send change the SkyTrain name of that stop so I hope I made my point not to change it too much don’t demolish metropolis and its entirety… I bless those who are working there to be able to be moved to the same type of work their in… For example people working for Shaw that they get to go downtown and work with the same employees or friends that they have been working with the last year to 15 years… Don’t demolish Metropolis if it’s just for residential purpose a new building Metropolis number 3 was just put up in the last 3 years it’s still there before as an eyesore but finally someone took care of it and there is now the third building of Metrotown do not bring that building or the other two towns as there are so many positions open with those companies in those three towers so when you’re deciding to make Metropolis an empty pit… Then keep the buildings up and keep the people especially the ones that don’t deal with change well I understand that there has to be a beginning a middle and an end well you start in the middle of this and you go higher with how things are updated make sure you put in and we don’t lose the superstore Nike McDonald’s, Save-On-Foods Chapters dry cleaning and fixing clothing places tea and coffee places the smell of Starbucks just tantalizing your taste buds as you walk into chapters looking for a magazine book or Journal so take lightly his word of kindness to you please don’t demolish all of metropolis as it’s not for residential areas Burnaby will lose a lot of funds because the reasons they buy close to Metropolis Metrotown and Superstore is because the stores are there and so is the SkyTrain that’s why it’s so popular to live there so don’t demolish everything leave the food what it is and you should keep growing in funding towards your apartment when you buy it it will keep going in funds thank you for reading I really appreciate it and just don’t let construction start before Christmas as Christmas is here in 2 months 2018… Puppy Halloween Happy Thanksgiving Happy Christmas Eve Merry Christmas and two 2018 Happy New Year and begins sometime in the middle of 2018 about five or six months before Christmas of 2018 thank you for listening if you need to read over do so because people will be reading this and they will be arranged that they suggested the put-down of Metrotown Metropolis and everyone that’s responsible for this when on vacation and we’re not there to be yelled at so when you return you will be on that putting your place and just listen to the people when they say it’s going to go down it’s going to go down talking about so take this chance to reread and starts in the middle of 2018 remember to rebuild and don’t lose Metropolis forever we want a new Metropolis choosing a new name for it choosing a new name for the SkyTrain so not including this but why not put a contest in the flyer of a SkyTrain and ask someone to call it in your name anyways that’s 10 years from now but just take the one who sings before you take that first ball and smashed through Metropolis thank you…

  • Daniel Szilagyi

    They need to actually consider what they’re going to build in terms of stores to service all these residents, because sorry the one superstore is a cluster fuck currently and it’s getting worse.
    Yes, we have T&T and price smart but those aren’t really cheap generally, we need stores that will actually service all the people coming in as well, not just more tim Hortons and Starbucks

  • Jack Blair

    Wow you are a really ugly man. I presume you came to Canada to get a better life. What you very stupidly miss is the nature of Canada. In my country, Canada, we take care of our poor people. Unlike the country you come from. If this is too much for you, get the fuck out!! Leave!! And take your ugly and very stupid, selfish greed with you!!
    You are not welcome in my country.

  • Canadian BC

    This is my Canada and no homeless man like you is going to tell me where I should live.
    I would help you to find a job, I would give you a job but you don’t want to work.
    I bet I look better than you and probably earn more money than you.
    I am hard working person and you are lazy stupid idiot.
    You should go away not somebody who work hard and pay taxes more than you.
    If you want to give away money to people who don’t want to work go away I am not giving money only jobs.
    You are stupid looser

  • Jack Blair

    Just as I said – ugly mouthed, stupid and sickeningly greedy. I was born here unlike you. I am in my country unlike you. I help my fellow Canadians unlike you. People like you are an embarrassment. You have no idea what Canadian democracy is. But unlike you I am Canadian and I help where and when I can. You fucked up the country where you were born and you’ve brought your fucked up ideas to my country. I truly hope you fail here – but if you do, someone here will help you out. But you would not do that. You are no kind of Canadian.

  • Canadian BC

    How ever I am ugly I am better looking than you.
    I am Canadian that is a fact and you kill yourself.
    You wish me to fail , that is not going to happen I am not looser like you. My grandgrandfather moved here in 1920 working in mines.
    Who are you to give explanation. You are an idiot, looser.
    That is your democracy everybody has to think like you.
    I am successful my family too. you are looser and probably born to welfare mother in social housing and you probably don’t know your father because your mother doesn’t know who is your father.
    So fuck off looser

  • Jack Blair

    And you’ve just proved my points.
    An ugly and very little man from an ugly little country with ugly little ideas.
    Usually I’d welcome new people but you’re not new. You haven’t even learned to speak English well yet you say you have lived here for some years. I think that you are not only a little ugly man but also a liar.
    You add nothing to my country. All you have is old shit for sale.
    Real Canadians don’t buy your shit.

  • Canadian BC

    your mother is a whore and you don’t know who is your father
    son of a bich

  • Jack Blair

    Really? Name calling? Is that all you’ve got? Not only are you an ugly little liar but now you are a fool as well.
    As I’ve said you add nothing to my country.

  • Canadian BC

    hi son of prostitute. I added more than you and your whore mother
    Fuck off and go get some life

  • Jack Blair

    You should try to improve your English. It’s rather poor.
    You say your grandgrandfather came here in the 1920’s, that’s nearly 100 years ago. That’s a lot of time to learn English yet your writing is quite poor and rather juvenile.
    Did you not finish school?

  • Jack Blair

    Perhaps the reason for your ignorance is that you are religious. Religion kills intelligence. Are you perhaps a follower of islam or something like it?

  • Canadian BC

    Grand grandfather you stupid idiot you don’t know how to read.
    Fuck off looser son of a prostitute.
    go fuck your mother motherfucker.
    go get a job stupid bum.
    I will pay you a ticket to go somewhere far away from my Canada we don’t need losers you lazy motherfucker

  • Jack Blair

    Ah. Well now that response is just sad.
    Good night.

  • Canadian BC

    Good night to you too

  • A. Deng

    (Pardon my language in advance)
    You are he most childish person I have ever witnessed. While their are actual problems in the world, you waste your time calling someone a “son of a bitch” and telling him to “kill [himself].” Their is no possible way you are a Canadian because no real Canadian that I know has the audacity to speak so disgustingly about their own kind. Jack Blair is 100% correct. You need to get your selfish ass out of an amazing country such as Canada before you corrupt it or change your attitude because that nonsense is what ruins people. Than nonsense is what changes and breaks a country. A debate is totally fine, it’s a calm way to express different views about a situation but you sir took it to a different level which caused me to lose any and all respect for you.

  • Katyrose

    I pity you. We don’t need people like you in Canada

  • Canadian BC

    But you are not making any decisions. Who is asking you.
    Canada is mine country if you have problem with that go kill yourself.
    You are loosers.

  • Katyrose

    You might want to consider an ESL class. The correct spelling is loser, you should know that.

  • Canadian BC

    You know how to spell and nothing else .
    Go fuck yourself bich

  • Jack Blair

    Very well said!
    Here here!!!
    Jack.

  • Jack Blair

    Amazing! You’ve blown it yet again. Katy rose gave you the same good advice as myself back in this thread.
    You easily demonstrate your beligerant ignorance.
    If this is how you conduct your affairs in my country you most definitely need an ESL course and much more importantly a history of the great Canadian democracy. You’ve clearly demonstrated your total ignorance of my countrys’ democracy. You’ve lived here far too long to be so very poor speaking English. It’s extremely rude to my country. I speak both languages and you should learn both as well.
    Otherwise you nothing more than just another ignorant, arogant and very lazy immigrant.

  • Canadian BC

    Stop using two identities you stupid motherfucker. If you can’t accept that somebody has different opinions go and kill yourself.
    You don’t own my country I believe you don’t own anything except your empty head. Single mom brought you and you are the same loser as her
    Go get a job idiot no more free house .
    People don’t want to pay for losers.
    Get a job or die

  • Canadian BC

    I unsubscribed myself from this forum so I won’t get any notifications .
    Your are waking me up because you have no life.
    O.k. Go and fuck yourself stupid lazy bum.
    Go get some fentanyl and die.you useless peace of shit

  • Jack Blair

    Well that’s a step in the right direction. We won’t have any more of your vicious ignorance.

  • Canadian BC

    Go fuck yourself stupid motherfucker. You are writing posts at midnight.
    Do you have a job? I don’t think so.
    Do you have a life? I don’t think so
    You have only a welfare check and social house unite paid by me and other working people

  • Jack Blair

    Your stupidity is exhausting.

  • Mathew Hudson-J.

    First time I’ve seen “Superstore” and “service” in the same sentence.

  • Canadian BC

    no job, no life, no brain . that is who you are
    Born and raised in low income housing by single mom on welfare.
    She worked night shift to raise you.
    And you are the same as her

  • Jack Blair

    Ah, well you’ve proved that you’re a foolish little man without ideas.
    I’m done with your bullshit.

  • Daniel Szilagyi

    haha touche ;)

  • Canadian BC

    It is not going to be any better in my Canada if we don’t get rid of useless lazy idiots like you. Go get a job stupid bum

  • Canadian BC

    You are Useless. It would be better if you weren’t born.
    If you can’t take care of yourself you shouldn’t live ,you don’t want to work? Fine, don’t eat

  • Jack Blair

    You are really quite stupid.
    Boring and stupid.

  • Canadian BC

    No I’m building my country and I’m smart. you are just taking advantage of this country and not building anything.
    You are lazy idiot and so stupid.
    If you die nobody would be sorry just les money taken from working people

  • Canadian BC

    as I told you go fuck yourself loser

  • Jack Blair

    Run along little man, you’re embarrassing yourself.

  • Jack Blair

    You sound like a badly educated child. Do you not understand how foolish you’re making yourself?

  • Canadian BC

    You are embarrassing a human race. you ugly selfish asshole .
    Go kill yourself you are a parasite of the society

  • Jack Blair

    Ahh, hahahahahahahaha….

  • Claire Chang

    People are attracted to metrotown not just because of the skytrain station. It is the only
    place that provides a large, enclosed area that is warm, dry, bright, and free
    from cars all year round. No matter how cold and rainy during the long winter, people
    feel safe and comfortable once get inside the mall. Seniors come to the food
    court to meet their friends by just buying a cup of coffee. Moms push their
    strollers and allow their toddlers to walk around the mall. People who don’t have cars can come by skytrain, people who don’t want to pay for skytriain ticket can come by cars
    and enjoy the 4-hour parking downstairs. And once you are in the mall, you don’t
    have to worry about the weather, cars, and hassles. These will all be gone with
    the demolition of the mall. No more 4-hour free parking, no more food court, no
    more weather-proof environment. Street-front stores and public plaza, no matter
    how beautifully designed, can only be enjoyed when the weather is nice (which unfortunately is less than 4 months a year). Think about the decline of Robson Street in downtown Vancouver. It has the best layout and designs, but why people stop going there? Because there is no free parking and the weather is usually such that being in a mall gives you a much better shopping experience.

    All of high-rise developments near metrotown have been using “steps from the largest mall
    in BC” as their main selling point. Now that people have been attracted to here
    (after paying an elevated price), they learn that the mall, the main reason for
    them to make it their home, will disappear by a very hastened decision with
    amazingly short notice and short period of public consultation. To me it is a fraud.