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Chinatown Residents’ Last Stand On Proposed Development Falls Short

Chinatown Resident’s Last Stand On Proposed Development Falls Short

Chinatown Resident’s Last Stand On Proposed Development Falls Short

In a final attempt, Chinatown residents gathered and spoke out against a development application for a proposed 12-storey tower by the Wall Financial Corp.

A Twitter campaign with the hashtag #unite4chinatown was started last year, in efforts to derail the project as well as a petition to place a moratorium on future development in the area. However, only 497 signatures were collected.

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In their last efforts to take a stand, The Carnegie community action project group have asked members of the community to attend the development permit board meeting, Monday at City Hall.  The objective was to voice concerns and rally for 100% social housing, and dozens attended.

The 288 E. Hastings development application is set to have a total of 34 social housing units for tenants on welfare with rent at $375 a month, 70 non-market units with a rent cap of $912, and 68 market rental units. Included is 6,000 square feet of commercial retail space.

In a statement, King-mong Chan, a community organizer with Carnegie Community Action Project (CCAP) argues the move will break the community.

“The mayor cannot with one hand establish a fund to rehabilitate these buildings, while with the other create and approve policies and development applications that approve the market housing that breaks apart the community,”

The City of Vancouver posted on its website that the project is meant to retain the heritage of Chinatown while addressing economic issues.

“The purpose of the Chinatown revitalization project is to preserve Chinatown’s unique heritage while bringing new life to the community.”

The plan includes funding to preserve some of the historic buildings in the area.  But activists don’t agree, they believe preservation needs more than money for buildings.

The City did not accept the demand for 100% social housing and has accepted the plans for the development.

Written by Luisa Alvarez

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