COPE Councillor David Cadman and council candidate Ellen Woodsworth rushed to Little Mountain housing complex today after alarmed residents said that BC Housing, the provincial authority that controls the site, has started to board up windows and doors of the 200-unit site, despite the fact that people are still living in many of the buildings.
“This is an appalling situation where perfectly good housing is being boarded up and rendered uninhabitable while 2000 people are sleeping on Vancouver streets every night,” said Woodsworth. “The provincial government and BC Housing must halt all demolition and destruction of this perfectly usable housing until we can determine with the tenants, the city and the province the best use for those units.”
Cllr Cadman will be inquiring with city authorities to determine whether any demolition permits have been issued. Little Mountain housing residents say they have received no eviction notices, and that no demolition permits have been posted. Nevertheless, residents say that BC Housing staff have boarded up units, disconnected power and are demolishing interiors in preparation for full demolition.
At a meeting last Thursday, BC Housing told residents of their intention to demolish the housing complex, but did not notify residents that demolition would start today.
“I will do everything in my power as a city councillor to protect the residents of Little Mountain and preserve these units of affordable housing,” said Cllr Cadman.
Residents and their families who still live in 19 apartments, are worried that the boarded up units will attract vandals, squatters and arsonists and pose a threat to children and seniors.
“You don’t bulldoze affordable housing in the midst of a homelessness crisis,” said Woodsworth