The NDP’s housing critic says so-called “demovictions” in Burnaby’s Metrotown risk making the housing crisis worse.
“It’s an absolutely heartbreaking situation,” says David Eby on the demolition hundreds of rental units in Metrotown to make way for new condo development.
Burnaby’s Mayor argues the buildings’ time is up, and it’s not the city’s job to ensure affordable housing.
But Eby says the move could push people into the street.
“These are people that I can say with some level of assurance have nowhere else to go. It’s not like there’s some significant stock of low income rental housing somewhere else in Metro Vancouver where they can move to.”
David Eby says the province is failing when it comes to ensuring affordable rentals, but that there’s plenty the city can do too.
“The loss of hundreds of units of rental housing has a direct impact on homelessness on the rental housing crisis that we face, and I think municipalities do need to engage with this issue, and to ensure that what they’re doing isn’t making things worse.”
Eby says the province and feds aren’t pulling their weight, but that until they’re at the table it’s up to cities to ensure what is affordable is preserved.
He’s calling for a policy like Vancouver’s, which ensures new rentals are built to replace any that are demolished, and at the very least a slowdown on the demolition of affordable units.