Our Promise to You
TEAM's commitment to a livable city includes climate-change policies focused on reducing emissions through mitigation strategies that are effective and equitable, but also practical, sustainable, and affordable for residents and businesses.
How We Will Get There
Addressing the climate emergency is an essential part of creating a livable city for current and future generations. We have to both reduce the emissions that are adding to the problem and bolster our defences. Our climate emergency policy will include:
Using incentive-based policies to encourage transition to lower emission targets, and making strategic mitigation plans while minimizing impacts on affordability
Providing incentives for conversion to electric vehicles and charging options, and building systems for heat and hot water with heat pumps and solar panels
Working with TransLink to convert the existing bus system to an electric fleet, and to expand frequent service on all arterials
Considering all environmental aspects in planning, development, and transit, including the full life cycle of the supply chain, and planning for buildings to last longer than a few decades
Working directly with neighbourhoods to reduce driving by creating practical, walkable communities
Planning for long-term resiliency and stability, including adapting to and mitigating rising sea levels, floods, water shortages, and heat domes by expanded tree planting, tree protections, and enhancement of green space
Parks & Recreation
The Park Board serves the important function of protecting and expanding Vancouver's outstanding parks, recreation and community centre system. This unique and important administrative structure was established early in Vancouver's history because of Stanley Park. It was recognized that the park needed an independent Park Board and administration with the mandate to protect and maintain the park distinct from the City's mandate to develop the city lands. As more parks were established, these were also added to the Park Board lands. This distinction is as valid today as it was in the past. Some civic parties have suggested that the Park Board be disbanded, but TEAM sees that as a lack of understanding of the important role that the Park Board plays.
Over the past decade, under the influence of City Council, staff and special interests, the Park Board has made a series of irresponsible decisions that have adversely affected the health and useability of our internationally known parks and recreation system. Some of these actions have contributed to weakening of the Park Board's ability to carry out their mandate and prohibited the public's access to the parks and recreation system.
TEAM Perspective & Action Plan
TEAM will take care of Vancouver’s amazing parks. A strong empowered TEAM majority Park Board with Commissioners dedicated to listening to and serving the people of Vancouver will ensure our parks and recreation system remains at the core of our livable City.
- Keep Park Board assets publicly owned and operated;
- Restore Park Board authority over their operations and facilities by transferring finance, operations and facilities back under Park Board jurisdiction from the City’s planning, real estate and facilities departments;
- Stop the politicization of park management with policies and goals outside of the core mandate of maintaining and enhancing parks and recreation for the use of all Vancouverites;
- Create balanced policies and solutions that serve the needs of Vancouver citizens as required by the Vancouver Charter, rather than serving third party interests or potential privatization;
- Protect and expand the parks and recreation system for current and future generations to serve projected growth that is consistent with previous City/Park Board policies of providing a ratio of 1.1 ha of parks per 1000 people;
- Add more green spaces, recreational facilities and parks to address both the increasing density and existing park and amenity deficiencies, especially on the east side that has been historically underserved;
- Keep parks green: avoid paving over and building on green space and parks; work with Engineering to improve bike access to our parks and beaches without paving over existing lawns and gardens;
- Improve public green space management by prioritizing maintenance of gardens, cutting lawns, and keeping them clean and safe for the public's benefit;
- Facilitate gardens and urban farming in private and public spaces to support community resiliency and food security;
- Enforce maintenance bylaws on empty or under construction private property and boulevards to ensure there is basics of cutting lawns and keeping them free of litter;
- Increase planting and maintenance of the urban forest on City owned land, including street trees, and improve maintenance of street boulevards;
- Improved street tree management to protect existing mature trees and add new trees where currently underserved, with the goal that all city boulevards have a healthy tree coverage;
- Retain, protect, and upgrade the heritage facilities within the parks and recreation system;
- Collaboratively resolve Stanley Park accessibility issues and policies to ensure the Park and its facilities (Aquarium, restaurants, horse-drawn carriages, etc.) are accessible to all citizens, including cyclists;
- Ensure access and safety across parks and facilities, including for the elderly, for the disabled and for families who need convenient vehicle access - such as restoring pre-COVID access to Stanley Park and Beach Avenue - while also allowing new alternative infrastructure for cycling and walking without impeding vehicles;
- Assess and plan for the impact of climate change on Vancouver's parks and recreation system, including our beaches and seawalls, and protecting and expanding the tree canopy across the city to provide shade and to support urban wildlife and ecology;
- Repair the damage made to the Jericho pier from the recent storms to extend its life until a replacement is required and funded;
- Increase safety by expanding the park ranger program, keeping lifeguards on beaches, adding fencing on parks adjacent to busy roads;
- Provide safe park spaces for off-leash dogs that are within walking distance in all neighbourhoods;
- Discourage park encampments to ensure parks are safe and accessible for everyone, while working collaboratively with the City and other levels of government so the parks are not used as a substitute for proper housing and service that people need;
- Prioritize local neighbourhood community centres, recreation facilities, amenities, pools, and parks, to achieve walkable neighbourhoods with universal access;
- Avoid further development of commuter destination centres, with a few exceptions for replacement of existing citywide special use facilities such as the Aquatic Centre;
- Provide an integrated swimming/lifeguard training program so all 100% of kids in Vancouver can learn to swim. Currently, 50% don't have that skill that can save their lives. TEAM is committed to providing that training in cooperation with qualified agencies, and to also providing more easily accessed community based pools, with cooperation between community centres and schools to target early learning for young children;
- Support local Community Centre Associations (CCAs) and their roles in the joint operation of community centre facilities, and ensure the approval of the upcoming renewal of Joint Operating Agreements with all CCAs in 2027 and beyond;
- Encourage collaboration with schools and libraries for use of facilities for community centre programs;
- Withdraw Park Board support for the City-initiated policy of imposing housing over new community centres since the overhead airspace may be needed for future expansion of facilities to serve growth rather than sprawling over green space or having to buy new land for future amenities;
- Plan for community centre maintenance, upgrades, renovation and expansions that save money in the long term rather than deferring maintenance leading to expensive replacements; and
- Ensure the annual and long-term budgets for operations and the capital plan have established funding for all existing community centres on an ongoing basis.
They may still in the future!
In the meantime, you can learn more about them on their website.
A proven leader who believes in collaboration; a trusted voice of reason
Michelle wants to use her no-nonsense and get-it-done background to bring back our parks, public spaces, recreational and community facilities to being a vital, sustainable, and highly functioning hub for every community.
Top 3 priorities
- More Parks & Sport Fields
- Ensuring Access & Safety
- Expand Community Centers
What Michelle will bring to Park Board:
- Experience and collaboratively working with all levels of bureaucracy, government, special interest groups, and community to achieve the best outcome for all Vancouverites and communities at large.
- As an immigrant and “soccer mom,” the understanding of the importance of sports, recreation, arts, and cultural programs which needs to be increased and supported within every community.
- As a strategist for change, transition, and transformation, Michelle will work tirelessly to keep parks and the city of Vancouver green and safe, with much-needed community centres, sports facilities/fields, and enhanced new community programs and support for every resident from infants to seniors.
- Her corporate career in marketing, event management, and business development spans over 20+ years in the high-tech sector for industry sectors such as energy, emergency management and renewable energy.
- Michelle was an administrator at Simon Fraser University for various departments including the International Centre for Crime and Punishment, Department of Linguistics, and the Community Economic Development Centre; she was the Registrar for the Vancouver Film School for Acting and Film programs.
- In the non-profit sector she worked at Science World in various departments including Exhibits and Design, Education and as Executive Assistant. During her tenure Michelle developed the award-winning networking program “Opening the Door” for Grade 10-12. This networking event was created to help connect young people with relevant science, technology and engineering professionals to better prepare them for careers STEM field. “Opening the Door” has received the BC School Superintendents’ Award of Recognition and had become a province-wide program.
- Michelle has also served on the Board or the College of Registered Nurses of BC and the College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of BC. She was on the committee that merged all three nursing colleges of BC to form the British Columbia College of Nurses and Midwives.
- Enhancing and expanding on what works: preservation, maintenance, cleanliness, and expansion of our parks, trails, open spaces, and green spaces where people can use parks to have picnics, walk their dogs/pets, throw a ball, have events, family or community gatherings or just enjoy being outside.
- Fixing what is broken: Poor decisions and management of the Park Board has led to lack of trust, community engagement, mismanagement of budgets, poor maintenance of parks, and the stagnation of building more community centres and sports facilities. We need urgently to fix this.
- Adding more Sports, Arts and Recreation services, vital to all Vancouverites: We need to expand playing fields and facilities for all types of sports and for all ages. This includes basketball, soccer, skating, swimming, ultimate, lacrosse, and hockey to name a few. We also need more arts and culture events and programs that represent the diversity of Vancouver.
- Safety in the parks and at community centres: We need to work closely with the VPD and the City to address the critical safety issues in our parks and communities.
- Advocating for youth at risk with the award winning NASKARZ (Never Again Steal Karz) program in Vancouver, which teaches youth to do auto restoration vs stealing cars.
There’s More to Life:
- Whether it is raining, snowing, sunny or windy, you will see Michelle on the sidelines watching her son’s soccer games. She has also been a team manager and has many times given city staff hell for not properly keeping the soccer fields safe.
- Coordinating several global virtual Energy Transition events with industry leaders speaking from the energy, shipping and renewable energy sectors. Want to really know about how we can fix climate change? Ask Michelle, she can tell you!
- Did the full 42.2km Honolulu Marathon in 2019 (walked it, didn't run!) after losing a lot of weight and is now training for the Army Run in honour of those who have served, wounded, currently serving, or died protecting us in the military, to be held in Ottawa in September.
- Walking her dog, Obie and meeting all the other dog owners. It is really amazing how much we all have in common or can learn from each other.
- Raising a teenage boy can be challenging but also rewarding.
Reason for running