The City of Vancouver has responded to repeated calls to “do something” about the Downtown Eastside by rezoning it to include everything east of Stanley Park.
The decision comes after a heated discussion during an Urban Design Panel meeting at City Hall, leading to a number of arguments over where the DTES officially ends.
Amongst the calls for the City to take action, one resident said. “The other day I was walking though the DTES and I thought, ‘Wow, East Hastings has gotten really dodgy lately’ but when I looked up I was outside The Roxy.”
“Some people said it started on Cambie St., others said Homer,” one eye-witness said. “But absolutely everyone agreed that Granville was definitely a part of it.”
“By the end there was no area of Downtown that anyone felt wasn’t part of the Eastside now.”
As a result, one third of all units in the the Shangri-La will be rezoned as social housing with a 24-hour convenience store covered in graffitied-metal bars replacing Burberry.
The City has also begun exploring potential tenting options for the region’s 80,000 residents but haven’t ruled out the possibility of constructing one giant tent to cover the entire area.
Provinces and cities throughout the rest of Canada have unanimously welcomed the move. “I think it’s a fantastic initiative,” Scarborough Mayor, Jim Radcliffe, told the BSJ. “It really sends a message that Vancouver is a forward thinking progressive city with more than enough room for all the homeless, disadvantaged and mentally unwell people across Canada.”
The Burrard Street Journal has been added to the DTES Vancouver Business Directory, with with many Vancouver residents left wondering how, in a city with a building modelled after a heroine needle, it could have come to this.