Left Coast By Design

Tag: Vancouver (page 2 of 3)

No Smoking & Lack of Enforcement

Smoking Is Prohibited

Courtesy of Márcio Cabral de Moura

A few years ago, we saw the introduction of some very aggressive laws in British Columbia to protect the public from second-hand smoke. Simply put, it is now against the law to smoke:

  • in any indoor public place – work, bars, restaurants, malls.
  • on public transit or transit shelters.
  • in taxis and work vehicles.

On top of this, a 3 metre non-smoking “buffer zone” was created around all public doorways, windows and air intakes. Some communities took it even further (as found on the BC Lung Association website):

Vancouver & Richmond

  • Smoking is prohibited within customer service areas of food and/or liquor establishments (patios for instance).
  • Within 6 metres of a door, window or air intake of a building.
  • Within 6 metres of the perimeter of a customer service area.

And mostly unedited text from the BC Lung Association:


  • Smoking is prohibited in any common public area; in a taxi cab or limousine; on a school bus, public bus or any form of public transportation.
  • Smoking is prohibited in an enclosed or partially enclosed shelter where people wait to board a vehicle for hire or public transit; in a building (except as otherwise permitted by the By-law).
  • Smoking is prohibited in a vehicle if any occupant of the vehicle is under 19 years of age.
  • (Smoking is prohibited) Within seven and one-half metres (7.5 m) of any opening into a building including any door or window that opens or any air intake.
  • Smoking is PERMITTED in a private club or in enclosed premises that are not open to the public.

District of North Vancouver
In addition to BC Tobacco Law restrictions, the District’s new Smoking Regulation Bylaw, 7792 prohibits smoking within six meters of:

  • A patio connected to a business.
  • Any opening into any building, including any door or window that opens, or any air intake.
  • A children’s playground, swimming beach, food concession, picnic area, skateboard park or playing field.
  • The site of any public event or activity that the District has authorized by the issuance of a permit.
  • The grounds of any municipal building used for public recreation.
  • Lynn Valley Village or Maplewood Farm.
  • A transit stop or transit shelter if other people are there.
  • The new bylaw also prohibits smoking in taxicabs.

Pretty darn thorough aren’t they? And just recently we’ve also seen smoking banned in parks throughout Metro Vancouver! So what’s my issue you ask? As the title of this post outlines, there appears to be an extreme lack of enforcement and I’m pretty much fed up about it.

I can’t begin to count how often I’ve encountered someone “on fire” at a bus stop. Or just outside a door. Or underneath the open window that I happen to be sitting opposite to. And while I’ve been apt to speak up and politely ask the person to “extinguish” themselves, the replies have typically not included language found in most Disney movies. Heck, I’ve even heard language not found in hardcore adult movies (or so I’ve been told). In fact, only a couple of days back I ended up coming to the defense of a young mother (with kids in tow) who asked a teen to stop smoking at a bus stop after he told her to “mind her effing business.”

Now in the interest of disclosure, I don’t smoke. Never have, never will. And while my opinion is that each person is their own boss in such matters, I don’t feel that a smoker’s right to light up means I should be subject to toxins produced by the cancer sticks – especially when the law is on my side. But there’s the kicker. While the law may be on my side, I feel I have very little recourse but to subject myself to verbal battery should I try to raise the issue.

Should the police enforce the law? Bylaw enforcement officers? Parking enforcement officers in Vancouver? Definitely! Yet if that means we take them off the streets to go on a smoke hunt, then we’ve likely not got our priorities straight as they obviously have been tasked with other (and quite often more important) duties. So what should we do? I think Josh Lavoie poses a darn good suggestion on twitter:

And what’s not to say these new peace officers, while looking to nab those smoking where they shouldn’t, don’t have other duties assigned to them? It may not be the best solution, but at least it’s a start.

Everything needs to start somewhere.

Slash rant.

Dine Out Vancouver 2011

I have a confession to make. I’ve never participated in any Dine Out Vancouver event previously. I know, I should feel much shame for this. Having no excuse, I’ve decided I’m going to partake this year and see what all the hubbub is about. At least that’s the plan.

Fettucine Bolognese

Fettucine Bolognese – courtesy of Ariane Colenbrander

Anywho, for those of you who are still in the dark about what Dine Out is like, I figured the best way to describe it to you was to rip the description straight from Tourism Vancouver:

Presented by Tourism Vancouver, Dine Out Vancouver is a city-wide celebration of food and British Columbia wine and is the largest restaurant promotion of its kind in Canada. Virtually every type of restaurant in the city gets involved, giving you the chance to taste Vancouver’s hot restaurant digs, new hit eateries and neighbourhood favourites all for a reasonable prix-fixe price.

Nearly a week in (the celebration runs from January 24 – February 6), I’m going to be hard-pressed to follow through on participating. Fortunately, there are a number of fine establishments here in Richmond that have signed up, including the relatively popular Pier 73.

So how about you? What are your thoughts on Dine Out? Any suggestions?

Tonight – Hockey Tweetup at MolsonCoors Brewery

Early this month, MolsonCoors opened up it’s doors to a number of people involved in the Vancouver social media scene (being pretty involved in the social media scene themselves), as well as some rabid sports fans to take in the Canada/Norway men’s hockey game. I did have a chance to go, but as I was taking in men’s and women’s curling that day, had to opt out. Apparently fun was had by all and I missed out.

Watching Olympic Hockey at the Molson Brewery

Is this guy legal? – courtesy of John Biehler

So when I saw a tweet from Ferg Devins (@MolsonFerg) asking if there was interest in attending a tweetup for tonight’s bronze medal game between Finland and Slovakia, I nearly broke my phone tweeting him back to advise of my interest.

Fortunately, Ferg did receive my message and I’m happy to say I’ll be there tonight. If you’re going, track me down – the real name is Chris and on twitter y’all know me as @lyteforce.

Flag Walk

Canada flag / Flag Walk on Granville (Vancouver)

Oh Canada – courtesy of wynlok

While driving in to work today, Marnie and I noticed what appeared to be flags of different countries painted on the sidewalk of Granville St. stretching from 16th Ave. W. down to the Granville Bridge.

My first thought of the flags was some form of Olympics celebration, but found it odd that there were no banners or signage supporting the initiative. My second guess was some form of ambush marketing, but it still made very little sense as there was no further supporting info (although a marketing campaign like this would have been good for United Colours of Benetton).

Well, I was wrong on both accounts.

The flags, or decals as they are called, are the result of a community partnership between the Yaletown Business Improvement Association and the South Granville Business Improvement Association. The route of the Flag Walk stretches from BC Place Stadium right up the South Granville Rise and with close to 450 decals, nearly 80 different nations are represented:

FlagWalk is the creation of a unique walking route connecting Yaletown and South Granville, two of Vancouver’s truly unique neighbourhoods. The FlagWalk pathway spans a total distance of 3.74 kms and features the flags of countries participating in the 2010 Winter Games.

I personally think the idea is quite unique, and if you’re into contests, you can follow along with the Vancouver Sun in an effort to win a trip for two around the world.

If you want to learn more, you can hit up the official Flag Walk website, head over to the blog or follow the group on twitter.

Molson’s 2010 Mural Project

Occasionally on my commute home from work to Richmond, instead of heading down Granville, I swing westward along Burrard St. and past the Molson Brewery. An icon that has been part of the Kitsilano skyline for some time, I noticed a while back that white banners with pictures had been hung on the side of the building. Not really knowing what it was, I simply filed it under the “things that make you hmmm..” category and continued to drive on.

2010MolsonMural Launch

2010 Mural Project Banner – courtesy of Rebecca Bollwitt

Well after following @MolsonFerg on twitter, I discovered that it was actually going to be “one of the largest ever photo mosaic constructed in Canada” and Molson was looking for people like me to submit pictures to contribute to it’s success.

So being the swell guy I am, I headed to Molson Canadian 2010 Mural Project to sign-up and and submit my mug for consideration. Although I have yet to hear back (likely due to the fact I failed to update my Molson Insider email address – it still had my way old telus.net one), I don’t think my picture was up to snuff as I noticed someone standing in the background. Why is that a problem you ask? Well that’s because there are some rules silly:

  1. Must be a JPEG.
  2. A large image with only you in it – no one else in the background.
  3. Needs to be a profile/headshot.
  4. No logos, signs, gang signs, obscene content.
  5. No drinking scenes.
  6. You’re supposed to have your game face on.

So there you go. I’m still hoping that it’s just taking a long time for my picture to be accepted, but considering I think I broke rule number two (seriously, she’s like in the way and everything and I didn’t notice her standing there) I’m doubtful my picture will make it to the banner. But what’s stopping your mug from gracing the Kitsilano skyline? That’s right. Nothing. Head over to the Mural Project and sign-up. And once you’re up there, stop by and let me know so I can at least say I know someone up there.

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