Steve Milani of Port Moody
Proudly Served as City Councillor from 2018-2022
Proudly Served as City Councillor from 2018-2022
The next election will decide Port Moody's future for decades to come so it is imperative that voters know exactly where their candidates stand. I believe most of us live here to be close to nature and part of a smaller, well-balanced community, therefore, turning Port Moody into a bustling metropolis should not be the path forward. Instead, let's respect the environment and our residents' quality of life as we work towards achieving our 2041 growth target of 50,000 residents — without exceeding it by adding over two dozen new concrete condo towers in close proximity to our precious Rocky Point Park. Let's move forward by putting residents' quality of life first.
I believe in open, collaborative and respectful governance that is fiscally responsible, but most of all, in touch with the community's needs. My boots-on-the-ground style is evident in my visual presence on the streets, in the parks and at community events. I am not a bureaucrat and believe in getting things done rather than tying them up in red tape for years. While my less bureaucracy, more results approach may be disconcerting to the status quo, my persistence paid off as is evident in what I accomplished during my first term. With your support on October 15th, I will bring my can-do attitude to the Office of Mayor this fall.
Council's responsibility is to consider the interests and well-being of the public and the City. While I always appreciated what a diligent developer could bring to the table, I was there to negotiate on behalf of the residents in good faith.
Moving forward, we should only approve projects that thoughtfully add to our quality of life and the local economy. Port Moody is already denser than Coquitlam with 1,389 people per square kilometre compared to Coquitlam's 1,262 residents per square kilometre. With a current population of 33,535 and current instream applications adding another 32,307 residents if approved, our population is set to exceed 65,000 residents, effectively doubling our current population and far exceeding our 2041 growth target of 50,000 residents. These numbers are not imaginary or made up as some might have you believe and can be viewed on page 10 of this Report to Council prepared by staff and uploaded to the City's website.
Our goal should not be to become a bedroom community of highrise condos as that would not be a complete community, nor would it be financially sustainable. Do we really need over two dozen additional concrete towers in the center of the city causing gridlock? Most people I ask that question respond with a resounding, “No!” We should be encouraging housing that does not come at the expense of the environment or a livable community. Let's encourage less dense, more human-scale missing-middle building forms which are more environmentally friendly, more economical to build, and ultimately, more affordable.
With growth comes a need for expanded amenities/facilities, perhaps one day, even an indoor pool. At its current population, the City is already way behind in terms of facilities to service its residents as stated in the official Growth Consideration table. In fact, over $50,000,000 of improvements are needed to simply catch up to where we should be, while in excess of $100,000,000 in amenity/facility upgrades are needed to meet the needs of 50,000 residents. Yes, one hundred million dollars plus! After that, the cost increases exponentially with every 10,000 new residents. It would make sense then to maintain existing facilities to the highest standard to ensure they can continue to service the needs of residents for many years to come.
Kyle Centre plays an integral role in the community, yet its regular maintenance had seemingly been deferred indefinitely. Despite professional recommendations, previous Councils had not approved the funding needed to maintain the tarp-covered Kyle Centre adequately which caused its exterior to deteriorate from exposure to the elements to the point where it would soon be beyond repair. Residents deserved better so to rectify this, I wrote a Report to Council seeking support to authorize the necessary repairs to the centre’s building envelope, ensuring that it would remain viable to serve the community for many years to come. Included in the report was an option for a hidden portal on the east side to facilitate future expansion. I am happy to report that on July 26, 2022, a majority vote to proceed with the restoration of the building envelope and expansion portal was achieved; Cllr Dilworth opposed. Work will begin shortly on restoring the building envelope at a priority-one level!
Rest assured that I will explore all possible avenues so that residents won't feel like they need to commute to bordering municipalities to get services that should be available to them closer to home.
Economic growth and traffic go hand in hand. If jobs are not available close to home, most people will drive to work which creates more traffic. Moving forward, let's design the city to lessen this nasty side-effect by making it a place where we can live, work and recreate. Building more condos where jobs used to exist will only exacerbate the problem by putting more cars on the road. It’s time to put the focus on the creation of local job space.
Our city has been blessed with an incredible wealth of resources that drive interest in the area, and we need to harness this for the future prosperity of Port Moody. Let’s leverage Moody Centre’s proximity to rapid transit, fiberoptic internet connectivity, local eateries and parks to attract anchor tenants in tech, research, post-secondary, health and other sustainable industries. More local job opportunities will lower the number of people that need to commute, resulting in less traffic on our roads, a healthier tax base and more quality time for Port Moody residents to spend enjoying their community.
Port Moody residents love their parks, big and small, so let's enhance and expand them as the city grows. Let's plan for an expansion of our beloved Rocky Point Park to the west so it will be able to keep up with the increasing demand of a constantly growing population in Moody Centre. According to the 2021 Census, Moody Centre is where the majority of growth is occurring. The wear and tear on Rocky Point Park is considerably higher than in other parks because it is right on the water surrounded by beautiful vistas in every direction. It is also within easy walking distance to rapid transit so it also attracts droves of daytime visitors for special events such as the Golden Spike Festival and Ribfest. Another major draw is Brewers Row, which brings in visitors seven days a week from all over Metro Vancouver and beyond.
To reduce the burden on Rocky Point Park, let’s ensure that any future development west of the park is set back from the water, allowing restoration of the shoreline and expanded park space for our residents and future generations to enjoy!
Within a week of being elected in 2018, I set out on foot one cold evening on a mission to identify every dead street light in Moody Centre. I tied a yellow ribbon around each one because they had no serial numbers to track their location. That evening I tagged approximately 30 dead street lights. Once they were repaired, the pedestrian experience improved immensely with all of the charming heritage-style lampposts now providing for a safer and more enjoyable experience. It turns out that my mission identified a need to create a maintenance plan for light standards in the city which was finally implemented this year.
In January of 2020, a child was struck by a car while crossing Clarke St at Elgin St. even though that intersection had been previously identified as being in need of a proper crossing. In fact, the Mayor had brought a report to Council two years prior on this very issue. A new safety task force will attempt to expedite addressing these issues rather than having them tied up in bureaucratic red tape for years.
If elected, I will form the first-ever Mayor's Community First Task Force. Its purpose would be to quickly address safety issues identified by residents such as trimming back hedges to improve sightlines near pedestrian crossings, repainting crosswalks, installing pedestrian-activated flashing crossing lights, upgrading lighting fixtures and adding physical bicycle lane barriers throughout the city. The east-bound bike lane on Murray St, for example, is in dire need of delineators to help keep cyclists safe as there have been far too many close calls. Paint is not protection.
I am in favour of thoughtful development that fits community needs. I am in favour of the right project — in the right neighbourhood. Have I supported every project that’s come before Council? I have not. I look at each project closely and listen to community feedback, to determine if, once built, it will improve or negatively affect the quality of life for Port Moody residents. Here are some multi-family residential and mixed-use projects that I have supported during my term on Council.
6-storey mixed-use, 117 residential units with commercial on the bottom. Moody Centre.
43 townhouses and heritage house restoration, replacing 7 single-family homes in Moody Centre.
163 units, 6-storey condos replacing 6 single family homes and one empty lot in Seaview.
173 units in an 11-storey terraced condo building in Moody Centre. *Also known as 3000 Henry.
30 townhouses replacing 4 single-family homes in Moody Centre.
415 units in 3 mixed-use towers, residential & commercial in Moody Centre.
88 units condos replacing 2 single-family homes in Moody Centre.
28 townhouses replacing 5 single-family homes in Seaview.
45 unit mix of condos & townhouses on an empty lot in Moody Centre.
9 townhouses replacing 1 single-family home in Moody Centre.
Below is a list of initiatives and accomplishments during my first term on Council, each of them improving the quality of life for Port Moody residents. Just imagine what we can get done together next term!
After listening to residents voice their concerns about excessive construction noise in their neighbourhoods, I took it to Council. Residents now enjoy the peace and quiet an hour earlier each weekday evening and on Saturdays, they gain two additional hours of quiet each morning and each evening. Tri-City News article
Growing tired of hearing, "We can't do anything about the traffic because it is mainly through traffic.”, I thought, then let's improve the through traffic by identifying impediments along the way. In October of 2019, I brought a Report to Council identifying three choke points. Council supported my recommendations and the staff is currently working on how best to address the choke points. Yes, it's been over 2 1/2 years so far. We can make improvements but only if there's a will on Council to do so.
Being short on funds shouldn't impede youth who wish to have fun with their friends at a drop-in youth program. To help facilitate participation, during the 2022 Fees Bylaw update in November of 2019, I moved that the “THAT the drop-in fees for all youth programs be set at a flat rate of $2.00” which was supported by Council and is now the active rate. To be a truly inclusive community, barriers need to be identified, acknowledged and removed. Council Minutes (see 6.5.1 on page 4)
Local small businesses were hit hard by the pandemic, making it hard if not impossible to survive. When I discovered that they were incurring additional permit & inspection fees to expand their workspaces to allow for proper social distancing, I brought the matter to Council and had the additional fees eliminated and those already paid to the City refunded. Tri-City News article Report to Council
During the pandemic, many residents were forced to work from home in order to pay their bills. During this time, it became apparent that zoning bylaws needed updating since legal-suites and home-based businesses were not permitted to exist in the same dwelling. In November of 2020, I brought a report to Council to address this situation. In the report, I also addressed the fact that artists were not allowed to sell their wares from home. I found this odd since the City’s moniker is City of the Arts. The updated bylaws were adopted earlier this year. Report to Council
The creation of RS1-S small lot subdivisions created unintended consequences related to the construction of laneway homes on existing small lot RS1 zoned properties so I brought it to the Council’s attention and the issue was rectified, eliminating unnecessary red tape. Report to Council
Written public input was not being captured officially in the minutes which created an impediment for those not able to contribute to public input on any given night. I believe in equal access and transparency so I wrote a report to Council. After one and a half years it was finally approved by Council. While it will take some time for staff to implement, once in place it will allow people with challenges such as mobility, conflicting schedules, caregiving, illness, fear of public speaking, and so on, to have their voices heard on issues that are important to them. This is democracy in its simplest form. Report to Council
Port Moody City Council declared a State of Climate Emergency. To do our part, the City needs to encourage other building forms such as mass timber so I wrote a report on the subject and brought the matter to Council for discussion. Staff is currently in the process of creating an interim policy to help fast-track development applications that are more environmentally sustainable. Tri-City News article
In order to deal with transportation issues throughout the City, I resurrected the defunct Transportation Committee and have Chaired it ever since. The committee provides advice and recommendations to the Council on regional and municipal transportation needs and priorities including traffic safety, accessibility, traffic operational issues, sustainable transportation modes including the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, traffic calming and placemaking, parking needs and systems, any other matters referred by Council, and other areas identified by the Committee and approved by Council. Terms of Reference
Residential properties containing “unmapped watercourses” known more commonly as “ditches” are no longer eligible to be redeveloped to the same level as their waterless counterparts. This has brought about frustration and real or potential financial hardship to many Port Moody property owners. I wrote a report to Council in hopes of rectifying this situation but the problem still remains. Report to Council
Residents told me they've had challenges getting access to burial facilities and would prefer to keep their loved ones close so I took it to Council. It is currently on staff's work plan for 2023. Tri-City News article Report to Council
2 years ago, our community approached Councillor Milani with concerns about pedestrian safety and heavy volumes of speeding traffic. Councillor Milani listened and worked consistently with our community, and went above and beyond to improve Port Moody's process for designing traffic calming solutions. The result today, is a balanced design that gets it right: allowing traffic to flow, ensuring that pedestrians are comfortable, and one that was delivered in a cost-effective way. Councillor Milani put the work in to deliver a community-based solution that improved the quality of life in our neighbourhood. Thank you, Steve!
Jason Ashfield, Port Moody Resident
I have been a resident and homeowner in Port Moody for 27 years. Steve Milani has been the most accessible and competent Councillor I have dealt with in those 27 years. He was the first city official to respond when our neighbourhood needed City assistance to deal with a serious bylaw issue with the school district and a corporate neighbour. Steve arranged an onsite visit with residents to review the issue. Steve also arranged for our MLA to attend for his input as well. I was very impressed by how seriously he took our issue. He was able to manage the issue through all the knots of bureaucracy and get it resolved. It was very impressive work.
I have been after City Hall for years to maintain our tax-paid assets better. I was very happy to see Kyle Center finally get the much-needed repair. Steve’s initiative and hard work lead to the project finally getting approved by council. Paint trees blue or repair a roof? It shouldn’t be a hard decision, it’s common sense. Steve is a breath of common sense in a City that truly needs more of it.
Steve has a passion for Port Moody and a vision most all of us residents have for the City we live in and love. Steve's experience, passion, hard work and connection with the residents give him the attributes of a Mayor that can move Port Moody forward in a common sense and responsible direction.
On October 15th get out and vote, vote for Steve!!
Robert Smith, Port Moody Resident
We are privileged to know Steve Milani for over thirty years. Steve is an authentic and caring individual who is truly passionate about his community.
Last year during a traffic study in our area, there was increased traffic with speeding vehicles down our street. An example of Steve’s dedication is he visited us in person, listened to our concerns and immediately communicated them to city staff who then quickly installed a barricade to help combat the issue.
We personally endorse and support Steve Milani as our next Mayor of Port Moody.
Mass and Tania Cerantola, Port Moody residents
I’m really excited that Steve Milani has decided to put his name forward for the position of mayor, in Port Moody. During my time on the Tri-Cities Pride board, I helped in the push for a rainbow crosswalk, in Port Moody, and organized a Pride flag raising ceremony by Port Moody’s City Hall. Steve has always been incredibly supportive of work to support LGBTQIA2S+ people and enthusiastically voted in favour of both of these initiatives. As a queer person, having allies in government is extremely important to me. I would love to see Steve Milani as Port Moody’s mayor, because I believe he is an honest and principled person, and because I believe he will help to create an even more welcoming and supportive city for all residents.
Nicola Spurling, Founder of the Tri-Cities Pride Society
Steve Milani is a kind, caring, sincere and charitable individual. During the past four years, I have observed him as a councillor to be hard-working, dedicated and respectful not just of the residents but most importantly, city staff and his fellow councillors, regardless of their views and positions on critical issues. From having broken street lights addressed to ensure pedestrian safety, to seeing the rectification of the damage that Kyle Centre has suffered due to prolonged deferred maintenance, he’s the kind of councillor that gets things done. More importantly, he has the personal and professional skills to inform others. Steve has a strong appreciation for the quality of life that we are so fortunate to enjoy in Port Moody and for the complexity of the issues that determine that quality of life. Steve is very engaged with the community and can often be spotted out and about chatting with local residents. And not to be overlooked, Steve has a thick skin and a great sense of humour, critical personal assets for the future mayor of Port Moody.
Francis Lemieux, Port Moody Resident
I have high respect for Steve Milani and believe wholeheartedly he is the best choice for the next mayor of Port Moody.
Port Moody needs leadership that brings civility and respect to the council table, with actions not just words.
I met Steve through our mutual involvement with the Moody Centre Community Association, and in his role as a director he demonstrated intelligence, humour, and respect for others, while offering solutions for issues as they arose. He has shown the same qualities during his time on Port Moody city council, despite bigger challenges. He comes to council meetings prepared and knows when to ask pertinent questions. He proposes practical and sensible solutions, and pays attention to the city's financial bottom line. No less important, Steve is very approachable, does not talk down to people, and remains civil and level-headed at meetings.
As a long-time community advocate and engaged citizen who watches council meetings and the dynamics at play, I believe it is very important to make wise choices for the next compilation of members of council.
I fully support Steve Milani to become the next Mayor of Port Moody.
Hazel Mason, Port Moody Resident
Respectfully acknowledging that we are on the unceded and traditional territories of the Kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem), xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.