I have spoken at a hearing, but wish to add this to what I previous stated. The 2 links in this text go to downloadable maps- much easier to draw than describe.
An additional riding for Richmond is good news. But, instead of roughly dividing the City Centre into old riding boundaries, the Electoral Boundaries Commission should create a new district that recognizes the birth a new community. With booming population growth, the City Centre has arrived of age, with the size and the distinctiveness to justify its own MLA. Instead, the Electoral Boundaries Commission proposes a divided City Centre (see Richmond OCP: http://goo.gl/FhBkBV and http://goo.gl/WUwOhi ) into 3 pieces, and lumped them with other neighbourhoods.
Alas, these new neighbourhoods, largely populated by newcomers who speak English as second language, who may not yet engage in the community as actively as would be ideal, will have their legitimate interests go underrepresented in the legislature. In Richmond, for reasons including secured entrance condos, and poor voter turnout, few elected officials actually campaign at the door steps in the City Centre. With the proposed new electoral districts, for the foreseeable future, I cannot imagine any scenario where City Centre residents will play a proportional role in electing or influencing their MLAs. Those tracts of single family dwellings with wealthier, more established residents will control outcomes.
I suggest that the Commission instead create 1 riding for the City Centre and 3 more for the rest of Richmond and Queensboro. (see map: http://goo.gl/Gc5t8l ) This map, based roughly on population distribution, which could serve as concept to be fine-tuned by the Electoral Boundaries Commission.
While not deliberate, the current proposal divides, dilutes and disenfranchises urban citizens. I appreciate further review from the Electoral Boundaries Commission.