British Columbia

Mary-Ann Booth wins West Vancouver by 21 votes; Mayor Jonathan Cote easily re-elected in New West

Few races in the 2018 municipal elections were closer than the mayors' race in West Vancouver. Coun. Mary-Ann booth defeated former mayor Mark Sager by just 21 votes.

Incumbent mayors in many Vancouver suburbs did not run again and Port Moody saw a big upset

Mary-Ann Booth squeaked past Mark Sager to become the next mayor of West Vancouver.

In Metro Vancouver's suburbs, candidates spent the election offering competing visions of what shape their communities should take.

How fast should they grow? How dense should they become? And how will residents move about?

Change is also a theme in 2018 with four sitting mayors in the seven municipalities making up North and West Vancouver, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Anmore and Belcarra not seeking re-election.

North Vancouver

In the City of North Vancouver, Linda Buchanan has been elected mayor — she is one of only three female mayors in Metro Vancouver.

Buchanan was a two-term councillor going into the race. She defeated six-term councillor Rod Clark, former city councillor Guy Heywood, former mayoral candidate Kerry Morris and political newcomers Payam Azad and Mike Willcock.

She succeeds Darrell Mussatto, who did not seek re-election.

During the campaign, most candidates focused on livability, densification and dealing with the city's rapid growth — 9.76 per cent from 2011 to 2016, compared to the regional average of 6.5 per cent — during the campaign. 

Transportation issues, especially when it comes to the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge, also featured prominently. The future of the Harry Jerome recreation centre was also a much-discussed topic.

Six people were elected to council: Don Bell, Angela Girard, Tony Valente, Jessica McIlRoy, Tina Hu and Holly Back.

Linda Buchanan, left, defeated rivals Kerry Morris, Rod Clark and Guy Heywood. Metro Vancouver looks like it will have few female mayors after the 2018 elections. (Clare Hennig/CBC)

Former councillor Mike Little has been elected mayor of the District of North Vancouver, defeating Ash Amlani with the Building Bridges NV slate, Erez Barzilay, Glen Webb and Dennis Maskell​.

He succeeds outgoing Mayor Richard Walton.

"We think that the issues we put out in the community, what we heard at the door, we were able to echo in the campaign and it looks like we got a tremendous amount of support for that," Little said.

As with the city, issues of growth were front and centre in the district's election. On election night, Little spoke of ending demovictions and stemming the loss of purpose-built, two-and-three bedroom rental housing for more-expensive condominiums.

He also wants to see transit improved. His immediate priority is getting express bus service from Brentwood and Nanaimo Skytrain stations to the North Shore.

"It's going to be a case of co-operation within the region but making sure the North Shore issues are heard at the regional tables," he said. 

The district's six council seats were won by: Lisa Muri, Jim Hanson, Betty Forbes, Megan Curren, Mathew Bond and Jordan Back.

West Vancouver

In the race for mayor of West Vancouver, a mere 21 votes separated victorious Coun. Mary-Ann Booth from her nearest rival, former mayor Mark Sager.

Coun. Christine Cassidy was running to replace Mayor Michael Smith who did not seek re-election.

As in other North Shore communities, growth and development were key issues in the race, but unlike its neighbours, West Vancouver's population is shrinking, according to the 2016 census.

It lost nearly 900 citizens from 2015 to 2016 — the largest year-over-year decrease of any B.C. municipality with over 15,000 people.

West Vancouver's six council seats were won by: Marcus Wong, Peter Lambur, Craig Cameron, Nora Gambioli, Bill Soprovich and Sharon Thompson.

New Westminster

Incumbent Mayor Jonathan Cote breezed to an easy win, claiming over 70 per cent of the vote in his bid for a second term.

The election in the Royal City was dominated by how much the city with a small footprint would continue to densify. Affordability, housing and homeless were also issues touched on during the campaign.

Six councillors were elected: Nadine Nakagawa, Patrick Johnstone, Mary Trentadue, Jaimie McEvoy, Chinu Das and Chuck Puchmayr.

Coquitlam​

Richard Stewart has been re-elected mayor of Coquitlam.

Stewart was up against business owner Adel Gamar and former council candidate Mark Mahovlich.

Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart is leading the polls in his quest for a fourth term. (Mike Zimmer/CBC)

The addition of SkyTrain service to Coquitlam has increased density, particularly in the City Centre area. 

The area, home to three Evergreen Line stations, has also seen the addition of several new highrise condos to the city's skyline and candidates have spoken out about the increasing density.

Coquitlam's population grew nearly 10 per cent between the 2011 and 2016 censuses, faster than the Metro Vancouver average.

Coquitlam's eight council seats were won by: Craig Hodge, Chris Wilson, Teri Towner, Bonita Zarrillo, Brent Asmundson, Dennis Marsden, Trish Mandewo and Steve Kim.

Port Moody

Rob Vagramov, 26, will become the next mayor of Port Moody, defeating incumbent Mike Clay. He is likely to be become the youngest mayor in Metro Vancouver.

The pace of development in the city was a point of contention between Clay and Vagramov.

Rob Vagramov, right, defeated incumbent Mayor Mike Clay (left). (Justin McElroy/CBC)

Clay was an advocate for the redevelopment of the waterfront's Flavelle mill site into a community for up to 7,000 people while Vagramov said the plan needed a rethink. They were also at odds over a road to Ioco and the possible sale of a piece of city land, the site of Port Moody's former firehall.

Vagramov courted controversy during the race when a video of him "shotgunning" a beer with a homeless man was posted on social media.

Six candidates were elected to council: Hunter Madsen, Zoe Royer, Diana Dilworth, Amy Lubik, Steve Milani and Meghan Lahti.

Port Coquitlam

CBC is projecting a win for three-term city councillor Brad West.

The race for mayor of Port Coquitlam includes West and three men without elected experience: Patrick Alambets, Eric Hirvonen and Robin Smith.

Mayor Greg Moore did not seek re-election.

Brad West has been elected Port Coquitlam's next mayor. (City of Port Coquitlam)

Like many cities in Metro Vancouver, housing affordability has been a focal point for Port Coquitlam.

The suburb has seen a great deal of development over the past 15 years, including the opening of a major subdivision on the north side and major redevelopment in the city's downtown. There has also been contention with neighbouring Coquitlam over the routing of an arterial road, the Fremont Connector joining the two municipalities.

Port Coquitlam elected six councillors: Laura Dupont, Glenn Pollock, Darrell Penner, Steve Darling, Dean Washington and Nancy McCurrach.

Anmore and Belcarra

Incumbent Mayor John McEwen held off challenger Glen Coutts in his bid for re-election.

All four candidates for Anmore council were acclaimed: Polly Krier, Timothy Laidler, Kim Trowbridge and Paul Weverink.

Neil Belenkie was elected mayor of Belcarra. He defeated Coun. Jamie Ross and Colm Cole. Incumbent Mayor Ralph Drew did not seek re-election.

Four councillors will be elected in Belcarra: Liisa Wilder, Carolina Clark, Robert Begg and Bruce Drake.

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