Dear Gregor Robertson: Let’s make Vancouver the Most Beautiful City in the World
February 20, 2012 § 1 Comment
Firstly I’d like to mention that I was employed by your first successful mayoral campaign knocking on doors and hanging doorhangers. At the time me and my friends thought we were helping someone who could really make a difference for Vancouver.
So, here we are in your second term (congratulations on the victory), and well, Vancouverites are not much better off than we were before. Sure, there are more bike lanes. Thanks for that. But, have you heard that Vancouver may actually be more expensive to live in than Manhattan? Check out this article if you haven’t already: http://blogs.vancouversun.com/2012/02/14/vancouver-great-city-if-you-can-afford-it/
Let’s say this is true, that Vancouver is more expensive than Manhattan. Well what are we getting in return? Many people remark about how beautiful Vancouver is, but as I cycle, walk and drive around this great city around every corner I see more and more advertising. I have been especially bothered by the new freestanding lit up billboards on the grounds of BC Place Stadium. Now when I drive along the Georgia viaduct instead of looking at the wonderful view of False Creek and the sky, my view is obstructed by lit up, offensive advertising for such products as aspartame soda. Why is this allowed in our city? Who gave whoever built those advertisements the right to block out the people of BC’s view of the sky?
But that’s not all, that’s just the most offensive new advertising. It’s everywhere. When you leave the office today I want you to look around and try to count how often you are advertised to on your way home. I’m willing to bet that you won’t even be able to keep count. That’s because it’s a barrage. It’s a barrage of advertising so intense that it bypasses your conscious mind (from sheer volume) and streams into your subconscious.
How are we supposed to think straight with a constant barrage of advertising whenever we leave the house? How are we supposed to have any peace of mind when everywhere we look there is a message telling us we are empty without some product or service?
The effect on peoples’ minds aside: outdoor advertising is extremely ugly. Once again, I encourage you to take a look outside. Think about how much more beautiful Vancouver would be without outdoor advertising. Did you know that Sao Paulo Brazil has no outdoor advertising? The state of Vermont has no billboards too. That means that if we really wanted to, we could do it here. And what a step that would be for Vancouver! Not only would Vancouver be the most expensive in North America, but it would be the most beautiful, and her residents could go about their lives free from intrusive outdoor advertising. I think the effect would be truly liberating.
I call on you Mr Robertson, to initiate a complete ban on outdoor advertising here in the great city of Vancouver, because outdoor advertising does absolutely nothing for the people of BC, clutters our city and manipulates its residents.
Thank you for your time, and please keep me updated on your progress.