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Get to know Burnaby council candidates: Ken Arnold

“I believe that the rezoning process is important as it gives the community a voice and a fair chance to make their concern known to the government.”
Ken Arnold Council
Ken Arnold, independent, is running for Burnaby city council in the upcoming October election.

Burnaby will head to the polls on Oct. 15 and vote for eight city councillors and seven school trustees. Mayor Mike Hurley has been acclaimed for a second term after receiving no challengers. 

The Burnaby NOW asked every candidate running for office in the upcoming civic election to respond to a questionnaire on issues facing Burnaby today.

Candidates were given strict word limits and a deadline to submit their answers. Answers exceeding the word limits are marked. For details on how and where to vote, see our voter’s guide.

Questionnaires have been edited for clarity.

Name: Ken Arnold

Current occupation: I’m self-employed and have owned a successful HVAC company called Arrowkirk Heating for 27 years.

Short biography (50 words maximum): I have lived in Burnaby all my life and graduated from Burnaby North Senior Secondary School. I cycled across Canada at the age of 18 and when I arrived back home, I was hired by Union Carbide; now called Linde. Then I started a subsidiary company called Carbonation Services (word limit exceeded)

Why are you running for city council? (150 words maximum): I’m running for city councillor because I’m a team player and I’m used to solving issues in a very organized and methodical way. I’m a forward thinker and want Burnaby to be the best city in Canada.

What are the top three issues facing Burnaby today, and what are your plans to address them? (250 words maximum): Three top issues in my mind facing Burnaby are:

One: Keeping small business alive.

Two: Monitoring the laneway housing projects and making sure big developments like Brentwood and Lougheed Town Centres maintain a community feel. Both developments will bring people from far and wide to be able to enjoy the beautiful city of Burnaby.  

Three: Keeping Burnaby beautiful with an anti-graffiti program. I’ve volunteered thousands of hours to keep Burnaby tag-free for over 18 years.  

What is your housing situation? Are you a homeowner, renter or something else (describe)? Do you rent property to others? (50 words maximum): Homeowner.

Burnaby currently has a population of about 250,000 people and is projected to grow to about 360,000 by 2050. How – and where – do you want the city to accommodate that growth? (200 words maximum): In the town centres such as Lougheed, Metrotown and Brentwood. These areas are already seeing large growth and will continue over the next few years.

Some organizations are calling on municipal governments to support the creation of non-profit housing by allowing projects to be built without rezoning requirements. (As an example, Women Transforming Cities wants social housing initiatives of up to 12 storeys to be permitted in multi-family areas and up to six storeys in other residential areas, without a rezoning requirement). Is this something you would support – why or why not? (250 words maximum): No, I don’t agree with this as I believe that the rezoning process is important as it gives the community a voice and a fair chance to make their concern known to the government. 

In 2021, 73 people died in Burnaby due to the heat dome. What are your plans for the city to address increasing heat? (150 words maximum): As an HVAC contractor the heat dome issues are important to me as I have helped many homeowners install units into their home to protect their families.

With the increasing costs of these units, it would be hard for many lower-income families to afford them. Therefore, I would support cooling stations in major town centres to help those in need, as only 20 per cent of all living spaces have air conditioning.

Is crime a concern for you, and how do you hope to address it? (150 words maximum): Yes, crime is a concern, but it’s a complex problem.

I like to keep our city graffiti-free one tag at a time through my volunteer work. This is definitely a ground roots way to show criminals that we care about our city and communities! However, more volunteers are needed for this work, and I would support programs such as this moving forward.

What is the biggest achievement and/or failure of Burnaby council in the last four years? (100 words): One of the biggest successes for the council is the maintenance of the parks and community centres. This makes me a very proud Burnibarian!

How would you spend a leisurely 24 hours in Burnaby? (150 words maximum): My morning would start with me and my PADS Service dog in-training having a coffee and tasty treat at Gabi and Jules on Hastings and Willingdon.

After that, the dog and I would take a leisurely walk in Confederation Park. Lunch would at home with after shopping at local delis such as Cioffi's Meat Market and Deli.

In the afternoon, I would be working around the house and chatting with my neighbours. If it were a special occasion my wife and I would have dinner out at one of the many great restaurants Hastings Street.

At the end of the day, we would walk the PADS dog in-training around the neighbourhood and head home for quiet night.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell voters? (100 words maximum): For the past 15 years, my wife and I have volunteered for the Burnaby-based charity Pacific Assistance Dogs Society (PADS).

To support this organization, we have worn many hats over the years from fundraising to campus maintenance, no job was too small for us.

As an added bonus, we have also enjoyed looking after countless service dogs in trainings and being part of a volunteer community that is without comparison – I have never met a more dedicated group of people.

How can folks contact you? (Website, email, social media handles)

Via Email:

Facebook: Ken Arnold