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  #9861  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2017, 10:18 PM
lio45 lio45 is offline
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Originally Posted by GlassCity View Post
As far as being a "terrible place to live," not at all.
Well, let's face it: being declared "soul-sucking" by a SSP consensus does not in any way mean it's a terrible place to live for normal people. It just means it's not the Plateau Mont-Royal and/or other such dense prewar neighborhoods, and that's okay.
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  #9862  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2017, 10:43 PM
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Here's the Vancouver map:



Note that until very recently on SSP you'd get in trouble if you pointed out that the facts on the ground seem to support the notion that "foreign buyers" are a fairly significant factor in the Vancouver housing market.

The red blob around downtown Vancouver is likely mostly rentals.
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  #9863  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2017, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by GlassCity View Post
I'm obviously biased having grown up in Richmond, but I definitely wouldn't call it soul sucking. It's undeniably suburban, but it's not Rocky Ridge either. Still has a gridded street network and a rapidly densifying and street-oriented centre. Personally I think it's a top model for what suburbs should seek to become.
The newer urban stuff around the SkyTrain stations is okay, but in a lot of ways I find this type of dense, car-oriented suburbia worse than the exurban stuff that people tend to dislike on here. You don't get an urban lifestyle in Richmond, nor do you get much space or access to nature. It's the worst of both worlds. I think I'd rather live in Vancouver or in the hills in Coquitlam or North Vancouver.

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As far as being a "terrible place to live," not at all. The fact that a large portion of the population doesn't speak English isn't that big a deal, everyone sort of just leaves each other alone. It can be uncomfortable sometimes, but for the most part it's a non-issue.
Isn't "everybody leaves each other alone" a low standard for how well a community can get along? In nice neighbourhoods, people have pride in where they live and feel socially connected to those around them. I'd give Vancouver about a 3/10 in this area. It's certainly the least socially agreeable city I've lived in, and it's worse than most that I've visited. It's not a huge deal if you have your own private group of friends, but still.
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  #9864  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2017, 11:33 PM
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Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
Well, let's face it: being declared "soul-sucking" by a SSP consensus does not in any way mean it's a terrible place to live for normal people. It just means it's not the Plateau Mont-Royal and/or other such dense prewar neighborhoods, and that's okay.
Well I got the impression he was talking about the language issue. I avoid driving as much as possible, so for me suburbia really is soul-sucking. But if we're looking at the "urban" parts of town, there's really nothing in them that's bland and boring the way suburbia is typically described here.

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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
The newer urban stuff around the SkyTrain stations is okay, but in a lot of ways I find this type of dense, car-oriented suburbia worse than the exurban stuff that people tend to dislike on here. You don't get an urban lifestyle in Richmond, nor do you get much space or access to nature. It's the worst of both worlds. I think I'd rather live in Vancouver or in the hills in Coquitlam or North Vancouver.



Isn't "everybody leaves each other alone" a low standard for how well a community can get along? In nice neighbourhoods, people have pride in where they live and feel socially connected to those around them. I'd give Vancouver about a 3/10 in this area. It's certainly the least socially agreeable city I've lived in, and it's worse than most that I've visited. It's not a huge deal if you have your own private group of friends, but still.
What makes it car-oriented? It obviously still has a way's to go but every new development seems fully street-oriented and urban to me. It just needs some time to mature. I see no reason that Richmond's city centre couldn't be as urban as the Olympic Village for instance.


Well you're never gonna get a full sense of community when two halves of city have limited interaction with each other, but it definitely doesn't make it a "terrible place to live." In everyday life, the language thing isn't really much of an issue.
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  #9865  
Old Posted Aug 12, 2017, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Note that until very recently on SSP you'd get in trouble if you pointed out that the facts on the ground seem to support the notion that "foreign buyers" are a fairly significant factor in the Vancouver housing market.
not only on SSP but also on national news. Le Devoir , Has shed light on the subject
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  #9866  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 4:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
Here's the Vancouver map:



Note that until very recently on SSP you'd get in trouble if you pointed out that the facts on the ground seem to support the notion that "foreign buyers" are a fairly significant factor in the Vancouver housing market.

The red blob around downtown Vancouver is likely mostly rentals.
This is pure hyperbole! Your delusional thoughts are becoming as bad as ssiguy. The fact you have no data to prove your assessment is akin to ssiguy and his delusions of miss information!

Please be more informative and rely at least a simplistic form of data to suggest that the "red blob around Vancouver is likey rentals"

You are consistently becoming inconsistent with reality like ssiguy. Try to form some form of concise data before posting your thoughts.
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  #9867  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 5:36 AM
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Last edited by GreaterMontréal; Aug 13, 2017 at 2:38 PM.
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  #9868  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 6:43 PM
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Demographia released its "World Urban Areas" report for 2017 earlier this year.

http://www.demographia.com/db-worldua.pdf

Canada's 10 largest urban areas according to Demographia:

1. Toronto 6,530,000 *
2. Montreal 3,555,000
3. Vancouver 2,300,000
4. Calgary 1,265,000
5. Edmonton 1,085,000
6. Ottawa 1,005,000
7. Winnipeg 720,000
8. Quebec City 715,000
9. Kitchener 475,000
10. London 385,000

* Toronto includes Hamilton and Oshawa.
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  #9869  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 6:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
Here's the Vancouver map:



Note that until very recently on SSP you'd get in trouble if you pointed out that the facts on the ground seem to support the notion that "foreign buyers" are a fairly significant factor in the Vancouver housing market.

The red blob around downtown Vancouver is likely mostly rentals.
What does this map have to do with foreign buyers?
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  #9870  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 7:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by balletomane View Post
Demographia released its "World Urban Areas" report for 2017 earlier this year.

http://www.demographia.com/db-worldua.pdf

Canada's 10 largest urban areas according to Demographia:

1. Toronto 6,530,000 *
2. Montreal 3,555,000
3. Vancouver 2,300,000
4. Calgary 1,265,000
5. Edmonton 1,085,000
6. Ottawa 1,005,000
7. Winnipeg 720,000
8. Quebec City 715,000
9. Kitchener 475,000
10. London 385,000

* Toronto includes Hamilton and Oshawa.
the GMA is made up of 93 municipalities. 700,000 people scattered around the urban area. now with Saint-Jean and Saint-Lin, that's 125,000 more than in 2011.
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  #9871  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 8:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Beedok View Post
What does this map have to do with foreign buyers?
To a certain set in Vancouver the existence of immigrants verifies the statement, "a Chinaman bought a house I'm entitled to out from under me".
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  #9872  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 8:50 PM
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Originally Posted by biguc View Post
To a certain set in Vancouver the existence of immigrants verifies the statement, "a Chinaman bought a house I'm entitled to out from under me".
Is that how you think I view the situation? I'm the one who posted that image and mentioned foreign buyers.

I have a few thoughts about the issue.

The first very simple observation is that people whose mother tongue isn't English or French in Vancouver were probably born outside of Canada (there are exceptions like aboriginals but they're not a large percentage of the total; most of the dots on the map are red and green). Clearly, this group now makes up a large number of households in the Vancouver area. This group excludes Canadian-born people of non-European ancestry, but it does include foreign-born who are permanent residents or citizens.

The other fact is that Vancouver has a serious housing affordability problem. Most people born here can't afford houses and can barely afford condos. 20 or 30 years ago, people born here could afford houses. So it is a generational equity issue as well.

We could say that Canada is open to everybody, and Canadian-born citizens have no more right to buy housing than somebody born on the other side of the world, but I don't think this is a fair or coherent view. The first reason for this is that the global housing market isn't a free market. You're probably not allowed to buy land in China, for example. So Canadians are at a distinct disadvantage without some kind of regulation.

Another simple fact is that, well, we have to have some debate over which people should be allowed to move to Canada and how many people will be allowed in. This is considered unseemly, and some people say it is racist to think about it or debate it, but there is no avoiding it. Canada has immigration caps in place, and requirements in terms of who qualifies to immigrate. If we didn't, we would be inundated with immigrants from poorer countries, our standard of living would decline and converge with that of developing countries, and we would probably have trouble with the US since we share such a large land border. I wish we lived in a more developed world where people could move wherever they want, but this is the reality as of 2017.

With these things in mind, did it make sense to set immigration rates and real estate regulations such that most households in the Vancouver area became home to people who moved here from another country, while the price of a house that an average family could afford a generation ago shot up to $1.5-2M?

I don't really have an answer to that question, but I think it's a debate worth having. There are definitely advantages to immigration in terms of economic growth and the vibrancy of the city. It's also worth pointing out that there are many other factors that make Vancouver real estate expensive, and that it's unlikely to ever be cheap (in a future where the city is also a good place to live). Then again, we've failed to correct any of those other factors.
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  #9873  
Old Posted Aug 13, 2017, 11:11 PM
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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post

We could say that Canada is open to everybody, and Canadian-born citizens have no more right to buy housing than somebody born on the other side of the world, but I don't think this is a fair or coherent view. The first reason for this is that the global housing market isn't a free market. You're probably not allowed to buy land in China, for example. So Canadians are at a distinct disadvantage without some kind of regulation.

Another simple fact is that, well, we have to have some debate over which people should be allowed to move to Canada and how many people will be allowed in. This is considered unseemly, and some people say it is racist to think about it or debate it, but there is no avoiding it. Canada has immigration caps in place, and requirements in terms of who qualifies to immigrate. If we didn't, we would be inundated with immigrants from poorer countries, our standard of living would decline and converge with that of developing countries, and we would probably have trouble with the US since we share such a large land border. I wish we lived in a more developed world where people could move wherever they want, but this is the reality as of 2017.

With these things in mind, did it make sense to set immigration rates and real estate regulations such that most households in the Vancouver area became home to people who moved here from another country, while the price of a house that an average family could afford a generation ago shot up to $1.5-2M?

I don't really have an answer to that question, but I think it's a debate worth having. There are definitely advantages to immigration in terms of economic growth and the vibrancy of the city. It's also worth pointing out that there are many other factors that make Vancouver real estate expensive, and that it's unlikely to ever be cheap (in a future where the city is also a good place to live). Then again, we've failed to correct any of those other factors.
As you can imagine I totally agree.

I don't understand why so many people seem to think that we've achieved perfection with an annual quota of 300,000 immigrants. To the point where any inkling debate of the issue is considered suspicious and leads to a huge hue and cry.

Who's to say that 300,000 is the right number? Maybe it *is* too much. It could even be that it's too little.

But we're so concerned with keeping up appearances and not rocking the boat that no one dares broach the subject.

Which happens to be one of the most important ones for the future of the country.
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  #9874  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 12:03 AM
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I would add that it's not abnormal for people to hold the view that a red dot is good and a green dot is bad. As you might expect from my previous posts, I am not ashamed to share my personal opinion that blue dots are good and red dots are bad in my home province.

Well-integrated Canadians of pure Chinese ancestry like SSP members hipster duck and geotag277 show as red dots, not green ones, on that map.
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  #9875  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
I would add that it's not abnormal for people to hold the view that a red dot is good and a green dot is bad. As you might expect from my previous posts, I am not ashamed to share my personal opinion that blue dots are good and red dots are bad in my home province.

Well-integrated Canadians of pure Chinese ancestry like SSP members hipster duck and geotag277 show as red dots, not green ones, on that map.

How are you aware of the ethnic origin of so many posters? Geotag, Crawford.

Hipster duck I already knew
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  #9876  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 12:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
How are you aware of the ethnic origin of so many posters? Geotag, Crawford.

Hipster duck I already knew
As much as I'd like to claim a secret sixth sense, the simple answer is: the exact same way you're aware of hipster duck's ethnic origin.

When you've been chatting for years with people, you start to get to know stuff about them without having to make any effort. I'm sure if you tallied up everything you learned about me here and there from years of SSP interaction, it would be almost frightening to realize how much a total stranger knows about me. And vice versa, I suppose.
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  #9877  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 1:13 AM
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The mods know what you are eating tonight, pretty much.

Shit.. um.. carry on.
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  #9878  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 1:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
How are you aware of the ethnic origin of so many posters? Geotag, Crawford.

Hipster duck I already knew
He's way off on me, for the record. I believe I have discussed it before on this forum, but no surprise Mr Talk Out Of His Behind makes stuff up with impunity.

Closer to the mark.
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  #9879  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 1:27 AM
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He's way off on me, for the record. I believe I have discussed it before on this forum, but no surprise Mr Talk Out Of His Behind makes stuff up with impunity.

Closer to the mark.
Interesting! I think I know what happened, I got you confused with SSP user VIce - he's the Chinese-Canadian from Southern Alberta with a STEM background (and was a very smart and educated contributor, back when he was posting in the Canada section).

Since you extremely rarely talk about your background, there weren't many opportunities for me to correct my mistake, so, in the back of my head, I had you misidentified for years (which of course had no bearing on my forum interactions with you). I don't really pay attention on purpose to such things, it's more like my brain sucks some of these random bits of info about other users like a sponge, whether I want it or not. And sometimes I'm wrong (it's rare but it happens )

I never "make up stuff with impunity" though - that's complete bullshit. I will always own it when I'm wrong, and you know it.
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  #9880  
Old Posted Aug 14, 2017, 6:23 AM
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Is that how you think I view the situation? I'm the one who posted that image and mentioned foreign buyers.

I have a few thoughts about the issue.

The first very simple observation is that people whose mother tongue isn't English or French in Vancouver were probably born outside of Canada (there are exceptions like aboriginals but they're not a large percentage of the total; most of the dots on the map are red and green). Clearly, this group now makes up a large number of households in the Vancouver area. This group excludes Canadian-born people of non-European ancestry, but it does include foreign-born who are permanent residents or citizens.

The other fact is that Vancouver has a serious housing affordability problem. Most people born here can't afford houses and can barely afford condos. 20 or 30 years ago, people born here could afford houses. So it is a generational equity issue as well.

We could say that Canada is open to everybody, and Canadian-born citizens have no more right to buy housing than somebody born on the other side of the world, but I don't think this is a fair or coherent view. The first reason for this is that the global housing market isn't a free market. You're probably not allowed to buy land in China, for example. So Canadians are at a distinct disadvantage without some kind of regulation.

Another simple fact is that, well, we have to have some debate over which people should be allowed to move to Canada and how many people will be allowed in. This is considered unseemly, and some people say it is racist to think about it or debate it, but there is no avoiding it. Canada has immigration caps in place, and requirements in terms of who qualifies to immigrate. If we didn't, we would be inundated with immigrants from poorer countries, our standard of living would decline and converge with that of developing countries, and we would probably have trouble with the US since we share such a large land border. I wish we lived in a more developed world where people could move wherever they want, but this is the reality as of 2017.

With these things in mind, did it make sense to set immigration rates and real estate regulations such that most households in the Vancouver area became home to people who moved here from another country, while the price of a house that an average family could afford a generation ago shot up to $1.5-2M?

I don't really have an answer to that question, but I think it's a debate worth having. There are definitely advantages to immigration in terms of economic growth and the vibrancy of the city. It's also worth pointing out that there are many other factors that make Vancouver real estate expensive, and that it's unlikely to ever be cheap (in a future where the city is also a good place to live). Then again, we've failed to correct any of those other factors.
Not targeting you, since I know you're a lot smarter than that. But that is a prevailing sentiment in Vancouver, and I have noticed it colouring your posts lately, from the time you claimed that immigrants who earn less than the Canadian average are a drag on our country, to the vaguely persecuted tone you've taken in this very post. In the past, you've made some of the most lucid posts about housing markets on this board, so I find the change interesting. Sorry for sounding hostile.

Anyway, there's a lot to cover here and I don't have much time, but I would like to continue this line of discussion.


Housing affordability is not the same thing as house affordability. I feel as though we've both tread this ground before, but at the risk of beating a dead horse, living in single family homes within larger cities is unusual. As our cities grow, it's normal that fewer people would live in houses. Since immigration is the driver of growth in Canada, you're ultimately pitching an anti-growth argument. Are you surprised that a board where people discuss urban development would be hostile towards that stance?

As I understand it, the foreign buyers that recent regulations are supposed to dissuade aren't immigrants, anyway, but absentee land owners who speculatively purchase Canadian property. With respect to your point about buying land in China, no, we cannot purchase Chinese land. Nobody can. Which is why investing in Canadian land is particularly attractive to Chinese investors.

There are two things to take away from this. 1. Investment in the Canadian economy is good. Lots of people are now rich because of it. 2. The losers of this bit of capitalism are missing out because we treat housing like an investment in the first place. Treat it like a service and the "problem" can't get off the ground. Are we going to have our cake, or eat it? Some people are upset that they won't have the chance to buy a house that will undergo a massive increase in value. Tough shit, they can look to buy in a city that's comparable to Vancouver of 30 years ago and hope for the same return.

I've stated my prescription for better housing in Canadian cities many times, and it doesn't include single family homes. Remove the barriers to building more housing--upzone and build as much mass transit as possible. Do what cities that work do. I'll never look at stagnation as a realistic way to deal with housing shortages because I've lived in a stagnant city. Stagnation is toxic. Achieving it usually takes breaking the city in some way.

Here are a few more disjointed thoughts:

Anyone could afford a house if they were willing and able to share it with a large extended family. At that point, is it even accurate to call a house a single family home?
Many white Canadians seem to have put themselves in a position where they are unwilling to share their living space, but still demand a lot of it. This smacks of entitlement.

We do have debates about immigration in Canada. Every immigrant admitted is subject to a debate. Our immigration rates rise and fall with different governments. I don't need to lecture you about the benefits of immigration, but I should remind you that here in the middle of the country, we'll take all we can get. I'll always find myself cool to the idea of restricting immigration because even if heavy immigration overheats some housing markets, there are a lot of struggling cities in this sparsely populated land that just need more people.
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