Road to Election 2018

Week 6 As It Happened

October 11, 2018


Success of a Revitalized Downtown Core to be Built Upon

Strong business supports strong community, city and social services, says Councillor Marianne Alto, and we can enable and support business to grow in a measured way that fits the city and region.


Marianne said if re-elected, she would continue to stimulate business growth and continue to follow through on commitments to improve the region’s economic strength and social development.


“We had an 11 per cent vacancy rate in downtown Victoria four years ago, and that has been reduced to four per cent, and that took dedication and action,” she said. “Investor interest has increased, and we’ve seen a 15 per cent increase in building sales in 2017 over 2016. That improved economic strength has enabled new social development, with hundreds of new supportive housing units, more social service delivery, and increasing collaboration among neighbours for social service planning.”

She said business success contributes to the resources Victoria needs to fund community/additional services among them continued infrastructure improvements which are necessary to continue investor interest and security for all Victorians.


Marianne says a new council must hit the ground running October 21st to continue to ensure we do not lose valuable momentum in the Victoria economy as “there are simply too many people who could be negatively effected.”


“Business success contributes to the resources Victoria needs to fund community/additional

services. We can:

• Keep cap on tax increases to inflation + 1%

• Streamline consistent planning processes

• Explore tax relief for businesses affected by city construction

• Incent, create, more, diverse housing

• Create a green/open public space policy

• Enrich the heritage seismic upgrade program


For information on Marianne’s Business Prosperity



Marianne Alto

tel: 250-384-0410


Marianne participating in the UVic All Candidates Meeting on Oct. 9

Week 5 As It Happened

October 5, 2018


New and Sustainable Transportation Solutions Must be Planned For


“Balancing transportation needs for all is a delicate proposition,” Marianne says. “There is a very real need to ensure public infrastructure provides choices for everyone, all ages, all abilities, throughout the region.”


Our over-reliance on single occupancy vehicles as our prime transportation mode has to be met with workable alternatives, especially for those living in outlying areas and working in the city’s core,” she says.


“We must act to blend and enhance balanced options for transit riders, motorists, cyclists, pedestrians, electric and conventional modes, and allow for new and sustainable transportation solutions.”


Central to her strategy is ensuring safety and convenience for all citizens. Our seniors and those with mobility challenges need clear and convenient access to services and amenities that they count on. Our first responders need clear and direct access to be able to do their jobs of keeping us all safe. Our shift workers need a safe, reliable way home early and late.

“A functional transportation system can also help more people participate in the economy. Strong business supports strong community, city and social services, and we can enable and support business through improved mobility for residents and visitors.   My experience as a member of the Victoria Regional Transit Commission will help bring together everyone needed to get the whole transportation planning job done. “


Alto says council can act now to untangle transportation by:

  • Supporting a regional transportation commission

  • Pressing for more buses on city and inter-city routes

  • Providing free public parkade parking and access to bus lanes for electric vehicles

  • Creating more designated anchor parking for car share services

  • Implementing a staff transit pass program


For information on Marianne’s Transportation Platform:



Marianne Alto tel: 250-384-0410


Marianne participating in the Burnside Gorge Association’s All Candidates Meeting on Oct. 2

Marianne participating in the Disability Resource Centre ACM All Candidates Meeting on Oct. 1

Week 4 As It Happened

September 30, 2018


Progress Must Continue to be Made on Truth and Reconciliation


VICTORIA, BC – – Orange Shirt Day is an occasion of humility and respect for Victoria councillor Marianne Alto, and council Liaison to the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations. It is a day to pause, reflect, understand and take action on the path of Reconciliation with local First Nations.  

“The Truth and Reconciliation Commission said, ‘knowing the truth about what happened in residential schools in and of itself does not necessarily lead to reconciliation’. Action is needed,” Marianne noted.  “If I am returned to office, I’ll continue to work with Esquimalt and Songhees Nations to realize their traditional use of the ‘Beacon’ hilltop. It’s a tangible, powerful act of reconciliation.”

Marianne says strengthening the cultural, economic and social relationships with local Lkwungen Peoples will benefit all Victorians.


Orange Shirt Day is a legacy of the St. Joseph Mission (SJM) residential school commemoration event held in Williams Lake, BC, Canada, in the spring of 2013.  It grew out of the story of Phyllis Webstad who had her shiny new orange shirt, a gift from her grandmother for the first day of school, taken away from her at the Mission. It has become an annual opportunity to continue the discussion about the impacts of residential schools. 

The date was chosen because it is the time of year in which children were taken from their homes to residential schools, and the timing sets the stage to implement anti-racism and anti-bullying policies for the school year. 


This week Songhees Chief Ron Sam endorsed Marianne’s effort to return to Victoria council in 2018. He said  “Marianne is a big part of our positive relationship with the City of Victoria. She shares our values of respect, honesty and courage. Like a true friend, you can count on Marianne to be honest, and at your side. I thank her for having the courage to walk with us.”


“As a municipality, we’re leading the country in this important work. I believe we are creating a legacy of justice and understanding of which Victorians will be proud”, she said.


If returned to office, Marianne will urge council to:

  • Continue working within and adapting the Witness Reconciliation Program

  • Establish an Indigenous Relations Office attached to the City


For information on Marianne’s Reconciliation Platform:



Marianne Alto tel: 250-384-0410


Week 3 As It Happened

September 22, 2018


Progress Has Been Made, and New Solutions Must be Grounded in Reality

VICTORIA, BC – – Current councillor and 2018 candidate for Victoria City Council Marianne Alto stresses housing is the number one issue in the 2018 Civic Election, and her experience at the council table and on the CRD’s Housing Committee has given her keen insight on how to create more homes.

“Having a track record, understanding the playing field, being able to act day one after the election – that’s what’s going to get more housing built in Victoria.”

Marianne says council needs to keep leading neighbourhood planning towards new construction and and affordability.

“We need housing options for everyone moving to Victoria, especially for workers in the service sectors of our local economy,” Marianne says. “They need somewhere to live, the first day they start a job.”

Key to her strategy is continuing successful, and finding new, partnerships to grow and support all kinds of housing, and that means exploring every opportunity from offering incentives for developers to working closely with affordable housing providers like Pacifica Housing and CRD Housing, and funders like BC Housing and CMHC federally.

“An effective housing strategy has many actions – there’s no one magic trick,” says Alto. “You create realistic options, and work with developers and current and future residents to get results that are fast, long term – that build the future Victoria we all want.

“In a crisis you don’t waste time by experimenting with unproven ideas or waiting for decision-makers to get up to speed on their job. You use people with experience, who already know how to make tough choices, and balance often competing interests.

“We need to appreciate the existing housing stock while increasing density. I know how to get these projects done, and I want to continue to lead council to take action on this housing crisis.”

Alto says council can start to add units to the slim inventory of available housing in Victoria by:

  • Allowing large lot single family homes with legal secondary suites to also have garden suites

  • Creating incentives for converting large homes to suites

  • Re-introducing a secondary suite grant program

  • Curbing speculation buying by exploring a 10% tax levy – payable into a housing fund – if a residential property is sold in less than 5 years

  • Offering incentives to build co-op housing

  • Putting affordable, rental, and alternative housing applications to the front of the line

 For more information on Marianne’s Housing Platform:


Marianne Alto tel: 250-384-0410


Week 2 As It Happened

Marianne was happy to participate in the North Park Association’s All Candidates Meeting on Sunday, Sept. 16

“The North Park neighbourhood is always highly engaged with City Hall on a number of issues which effect the entire city,  and I look forward to continuing collaboration whether it’s about parking or the redevelopment of Crystal Pool”
Marianne and her weekend canvas crew!

Week 1 As It Happened


Proud of Record, Asks Supporters to Bring Heart, Humour and Courage to Continue Job


VICTORIA – – At an “intimate” gathering that packed her Broughton Street Campaign office on Tuesday afternoon, two-time successful councillor Marianne Alto announced she’d be making a run for a Victoria City Council seat for a fourth time.


“I’ve been fortunate to have the support of caring citizens, and with our city bustling, and at a crossroads in terms of how we choose to grow, I’ve been encouraged to seek a fourth time. So last week I was happy to announce that I intend to accept that challenge,” she said.


First elected in a by-election in 2010, Alto is a small business woman and facilitator, active in the community for over two decades, who also sits on the Capital Regional District.


“We’ve made headway on infrastructure projects, housing, social justice issues – its gratifying to be able to look back at the things I said we’d do and see there has been progress on every commitment,” she said.


“But there is much more to do in all these areas, including continuing our work around the Truth and Reconciliation process where we lead the country, and we should be very proud of that.”


Alto asked the gathering for their heart, humour and courage in continuing the work at a time of economic opportunity and the challenge of massive growth.


“I want to ask you for your heart because the work we’ve talked about and what we’ll do in the future requires you to be compassionate, patient, thoughtful and tolerant and that takes heart;  for your humour because this job is hard, and if you can’t find the humourous parts then it’s going to be even harder; and I want your courage as this is a time of evolution where we are becoming a ‘city’, where we’re no longer a ‘big town’, and it’s going to take courage to decide what that looks like in the future.”


Currently, Marianne sits on the City of Victoria’s Committee of the Whole and Alternative Transportation Advisory Committee. She is Council liaison to the Royal Oak Burial Park, Council Liaison to the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations, Council appointee to, and National President of the Canadian Capital Cities Organization, Council appointee to the Royal and McPherson Theatre Society Board, co-facilitator of the City’s Trans Inclusion Project, and Council’s representative on the North American Indigenous Games bid team.


In this term of office, she has also been Council’s appointee to the University of Victoria and to the Boards of the Downtown Victoria Business Association, Tourism Victoria, the Victoria Regional Transit Commission, the Mayor’s Task Force on Social Enterprise and Social Procurement, and the collaborative multi-stakeholder child care initiative.  She is currently the council liaison to the Oaklands neighbourhood, current Chair of the Capital Regional Hospital District, and Chair of the CRD First Nations Task Force as well as a member of 5 CRD committees: Finance, Parks, Hospitals and Housing, Planning and Protective Services, and Core Area Liquid Waste.


“Local government is still challenged by the need to balance limited financial resources with the need to provide high quality public services for residents,” Alto says. “I believe that we can achieve that balance, and in the days leading up to election day on October 20 I’ll be talking about six important areas in which we can do that work together ,” she said.



For More Information about this event Contact:

Marianne Alto tel: 250-881-4133

Twitter: @mariannealto Facebook: Marianne Alto

Want updates on city council?
Follow me here!