Category Archives: Letters Opposing Sequel 138

Poem – Broken Bricks, Broken Promises, Broken Hearts


the length of a few dead people from our carnegie centre,
is a miserable dusty heap of rubble trouble
toxic to breath – noxious to even view

this is the pantages demo site owner hopes to convert unreal estate
into huge loads of fast food dollars via new and sterile condos
while the good real peole living nextdoor rot ……

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Council of Senior Citizens Organizations Wants 100% Social Housing at Pantages Site

To Whom It may Concern:

COSCO is appalled with the City of Vancouver’s entertaining another developer application to build condos in the DTES, this time, on the 100 block of East Hastings! (Sequel 138). Our experience as seniors in BC, let alone in Vancouver, leads us to share the despair of DTES residents who watch helplessly as they lose more and more social housing options. The facilitation of market housing in this neighbourhood will serve only to ensure that land prices will increase the taxpayer costs required to preserve this neighbourhood’s right to house it’s poor population affordably and safely.

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Artists Statement Against Sequel 138

As artists residents and allies working in the Downtown Eastside Community we are writing to oppose the development application DE414810 “Sequel 138: A Downtown Arts and Housing Project” and to demand a public hearing to address the future of the Pantages Theatre site at 138 East Hastings.

In response to the offensive claims made by Marc Williams in his July 27th press release we state the following:

CLAIM 1. “target market is artists who work in the Downtown Eastside (DTES), or would like to do so”

Downtown Eastside resident who are artists are predominantly low-income renters. It is clear that these are not the artists being targeted by this proposal. The cost of purchasing a unit in this property is generally unaffordable to members of this community. This proposal serves to capitalize on the growing identification of the area as an “arts district”, ignoring the viable, significant community presence and this community’s rich and extensive history as artists. The “artists” being appealed to are out of area and upwardly mobile investors.

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St. James Anglican Church Letter to Stop Condo Development at Pantages

To the City of Vancouver

On behalf of the Social Justice Committee of St. James Anglican Church in the Downtown Eastside, I am writing to ask that you call on the City of Vancouver to stop the Pantages development permit application to build a condo building on the 100 block of East Hastings Street. We have endorsed the Community Resolution to save the Pantages site for low income people.

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Pivot Legal Letter to City Opposing Condos at Pantages Site

July 28, 2011

City of Vancouver
453 West 12th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V5Y 1V4

Dear Ms. Kwan, Mr. Barker, and Mr. Toderian,

I am writing today to urge you to adopt the recommendations set out in the DTES Community Resolution: Save the Pantages for low income people, recently endorsed by Pivot Legal Society. We oppose the Pantages Theatre owner’s 2011 application to build a condo development on the site with a modest amount of social
housing. The 100 block of East Hastings is an important hub for the Downtown Eastside community. It is home to about 400 single room occupancy residents and a series of specialized services. Most importantly, it is an area where the low-income residents feel comfortable. All of this will be lost if an expensive condo development is installed.

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Letter from Chair of Urban Studies at UBC About Gentrification and Pantages

30 July 2011
Dear Mayor and Council,

I write to support the community groups and low-income residents of the Downtown Eastside who are concerned about the flood of upscale development in their neighbourhood. The proposal for condominiums at
138 East Hastings, the Pantages Theater, is the latest step in an ongoing process of gentrification and displacement that has made life increasingly difficult for many of our region’s poorest citizens.

Given Vancouver’s escalating property market, it is easy to mistakenly view the developer’s proposal for one-bedroom units at the $227,000 price point as a good thing for housing affordability. If this development were proposed for Kerrisdale or Shaughnessy, then it should indeed be welcomed as an opportunity for affordable entry-level ownership. But this proposal is steps away from Main and Hastings, a part of the city that has long been stigmatized in regional, national, and even international press coverage and policy debate. At this location, a proposal for 79 condominium units is raw, hardcore gentrification, with a minimal token provision of 18 social housing units. If this development proceeds, it will follow the pattern that is familiar in Vancouver and so many other cities: lucrative profits for developers and wealthy and aspiring-to-be-wealthy property owners, and worsening housing affordability pressures for those least able to pay for the costs of living in a landscape of leveraged, speculative investment.

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Letter to city council highlights developer lack of credibility

Dear Mayor and Council,

I am writing to ask that you take sides with the coalition of community groups opposing the current development proposal for 79 condominiums on the historic Pantages Theatre lots of 130-158 East Hastings. The Downtown Eastside neighbourhood, home to Vancouver’s last stock of low-income housing, is particularly vulnerable to gentrification. This block in particular is home to Insite, the Carnegie Centre, and hundreds of welfare-rate units.

Before undertaking a redevelopment of this scale, we must be extremely sensitive to potential social impacts and to the needs and aspirations of the existing community. In order to build on the existing community’s strengths, as we should, planning must be conducted with the highest standards of care, honesty, and democracy.

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