Gregor Robertson scrummed about his flip-flop on Olympic Village transparency
The pressure continues to build upon as more discussions are taking place at City Hall on what to do about the Olympic Village. Furthermore people are waking up to the outrageous hypocrisy of Gregor Robertson and Vision Vancouver on the matter of openness related to the project on Southeast False Creek. Scrummed by GlobalTV's Ted Field, Hizonner insisted that it was okay to keep things behind closed doors "because nothing has been decided".
Interesting. Isn't that what in-camera meetings are for – deciding stuff? Didn't Gregor say that the NPA needed to let the public know what they were up to with regards negotiations with the lender? What's good for the goose...right, Gregor?
Now this wrinkle from Vancouver's housing activists...
Community Groups to Establish “Olympic Village: Tent City” in Feb 2011
In the midst of a drastic housing shortage and an affordability crisis exacerbated by creeping gentrification, community groups are redoubling efforts to secure the promised affordable units at the Olympic Village, now known as Millenium Water. The 2005 SEFC Official Development Plan promised that 66% of the units would be affordable; but now that number has been reduced to less than 10%. Currently, a majority of the promised units remain empty and are waiting to be sold on the free market.
In the lead-up to February 2011, the one-year anniversary of the Olympic Tent Village established at 58 West Hastings, our campaign will use various activist methods to attain a moratorium on the sale of the promised units, including petitioning, letter-writing, boycott campaign, squats and beyond.
If by February 2011 affordability promises at the Athlete’s Village remains undelivered, the community will establish a Tent City at the Athlete’s Village under a general call to “Reclaim Housing.” In the second week of the tent city, if the sell-off of promised units continues, residents of the tent village may expand the direct-action by occupying the empty units and/or City Hall.
“We are proud to go forward with our announcement Olympic Village: TentCity Feb 2011. This is the next phase of our campaign calling for a moratorium on selling off the ‘broken promise’ units until the original goal of 2/3rds affordable housing is met,” said Tristan Markle of VanAct! “We've been planning today's Olympic Village: Tent City Feb 2011 announcement for a few months. Millenium Water and Bob Rennie were expected to relaunch their condo sales campaign tomorrow, but had to cancel because, thankfully, people are not buying the unethical ‘broken promise’ units.”
“We want to make it clear that the original goal was two thirds affordable housing,” said Stan Kupferschmidt of VanAct! “That was the supposed positive Olympic Legacy. It is still the right thing to do. People are still being turned away from shelters and are sleeping on the streets.” He added: “It is possible to meet that goal. The units are sitting empty. The developer is trying to profit off of broken promises, but it isn't working. The units should default to the public and be made affordable to those who need them. The developer is on the hook financially, not the City. The City is on the hook ethically.”
Tristan Markle (VanAct!) – 778-836-9877
Stan Kupferschmidt (VanAct!)– 778-322-6552
For more on the history of the Olympic Village, read our feature series articles:
- Which way out of the Vancouver Olympic Village mess?
- Olympic Village decisions defined political differences
- post by Mike