Canada Vancouver park board issues order to restrict tents in Strathcona Park

01:35  10 april  2021
01:35  10 april  2021 Source:   msn.com

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The Vancouver Park Board is the only elected body of its kind in Canada. Formed in 1888 as a committee to manage the new Stanley Park , its history is as old as the city's itself. It has exclusive possession, jurisdiction, and control over more than 230 public parks in Vancouver and a large public recreation system of community centres, pools, rinks, fitness centres, golf courses, street trees, marinas, playing fields, and more. Latest news. Park Board extends General Manager Order restricting tents in northeast corner of Strathcona Park .

Tuesday night’s Vancouver Park Board meeting saw dozens more speakers voice their opinion on a controversial bylaw allowing people to sleep overnight in city parks , before commissioners narrowly voted to pass the amended Parks Control Bylaw regarding Temporary Shelter in Parks . The homeless camp in Strathcona Park has been swelling in numbers, with an estimated 235 tents at the site as of Monday taking up about a third of the 10-hectare park , encroaching on tennis courts and sports fields. 2:12 Strathcona encampment growing ahead of Park Board meeting on overnight

VANCOUVER — People camping and living in a Vancouver park will have until the end of the month to pack up their tents.

a group of people in a large city landscape © Provided by The Canadian Press

Vancouver's park board general manager issued a new order Friday restricting tents and other temporary structures from being set up in Strathcona Park after April 30.

Donnie Rosa said the order builds on the board's work to take back bits of the park for the community.

"The intention is the encampment doesn't grow and these folks are going to be moved indoors over the next few weeks," Rosa said.

A statement accompanying the order called the shut down a "necessary next step" to return the park to community use.

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About a dozen tents in Vancouver ’s Strathcona Park homeless camp have been ordered to relocate, as the city moves to close off half the park . The order , posted this week by the general manager of the Vancouver Park Board , has banned any tents , shelters or structures from the west side of the park “A lot of this work is with the intention of getting folks into stable housing,” Fry said. “So by sort of asserting a little bit of more control and fixing some of the issues around that, we’re hoping to see folks get indoors sooner than later and work towards our April deadline.” The move comes amid a new poll

Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart says he’s aware that tensions between homeowners and residents of a homeless camp in the Strathcona neighbourhood have reached a new level. “I do really feel for the residents of Strathcona , and in fact, I have been down and met with a number of homeowners in the With more than 400 tents estimated in Strathcona Park , homeowners have repeatedly called on the city and province to address the issue . The municipality is building 100 new units of modular housing, which will be ready in the spring, but the mayor said he knows they need take action before then.

The order comes after the province, city and park board signed a formal agreement this week to end the 10-month encampment that has swelled to roughly 400 tents.

The encampment has faced criticism from a local neighbourhood association, which alleges it has become a source of crime and violence.

"There are a number of people in our neighbourhood that feel quite traumatized by the experience they've gone through in the last 10 months. I'm certain there's a section of the camp population that is as well," said Katie Lewis, the vice-president of the Strathcona Residents' Association.

She said it's been a long 10 months of dealing with the encampment, and she's looking forward to the park being accessible to the wider community.

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VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The Vancouver Park Board has voted to begin moving residents out of the Strathcona Park encampment and into indoor temporary spaces. The Park Board says it and its partners are still working on long-term solutions. However, it notes several short-term plans are currently underway. I believe we are on track to do that,” Park Board Chair Camil Dumont says. “In order to get there, safer, dry, warm, indoor shelter for the many people currently stuck outdoors needs to be made available. Securing that option is a significant challenge. Thankfully, this work is underway.

In Strathcona Park , meanwhile, dozens of tents have been pitched in an encampment that organizers have dubbed Camp KT – a reference to Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau – and that has become a visible reminder of a provincewide housing crunch. In a July 12 open letter, the Strathcona Residents’ Association demanded action on the encampment, saying it is hurting marginalized groups, “particularly during a pandemic where green space is extremely limited.” In the letter, the SRA called for “creative solutions to this complex problem,” including potentially moving the

"I'm looking forward to kids playing in the park, I'm looking forward to seeing the Chinese elders do their tai chi there in the morning," Lewis said. "It's a pretty magical place and I'm so looking forward to seeing it thrive again."

Chrissy Brett, a spokeswoman for the encampment, said campers haven't yet decided if they'll abide by the order.

"It is definitely a colonial response," she said.

Brett said the campers want to see the development of an urban reserve or co-op, which would allow them to camp outside if desired.

Earlier this month, the British Columbia government announced it had bought three more hotels with a total of 249 units to help house the homeless. About 114 units are expected to be available soon.

The campers moved into Strathcona Park after the Vancouver Port Authority won a court injunction requiring them to leave nearby Crab Park.

They previously camped at Oppenheimer Park, which was shut down by the B.C. government after nearly two years over fears of COVID-19 spreading.

Rosa acknowledged the possibility of the campers following the previous pattern of moving to a new location, but said the board's new bylaw to restrict when tents can be in parks could impact that movement.

"We're working on our plans to make sure we're enforcing our park control bylaw," she said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 9, 2021.

Nick Wells, The Canadian Press

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