Property developer Marc Williams plans to build a mixed-use building called Sequel 138 on the grounds of the recently demolished Pantages Theatre. He is proposing 79 condos selling for approximately $227,000, as well as a token 18 units for social housing (as REQUIRED by the current DEOD zoning).
Sequel 138 claims to be “affordable” condos for Downtown Eastside service and agency workers and is catering its advertising blitz as “providing affordable housing for artists & for workers in non-profits helping the people of the Downtown East side.”
In reality, the majority of us who work in the Downtown Eastside, especially those with families, could not afford to buy and live in these condos.
Importantly – as advocates, service providers, and front-line and outreach workers who are committed to serving the Downtown Eastside, we support the DTES Community Resolution opposing condos in heart of this neighbourhood. We would not want to be complicit in a project that will further displace, impoverish, and police residents of the Downtown Eastside and make people feel more unwelcome in their own neighbourhood. Currently, condos are outpacing social housing affordable to DTES residents at a rate of 11:1, contrary to the City’s own Housing Plan. The critical and life-saving priority is decent, affordable housing for current residents, not condos that let developers make millions in the DTES.
Therefore, we the undersigned, who work in and serve the Downtown Eastside community in various capacities, express our opposition to condo development on the Pantages site (Sequel 138). We hold the proposed development to be unethical because of its role in gentrification and displacing low income residents in the Downtown Eastside.
(Please leave your name and any affiliation in the Comments below. Please do sign-on, we would like hundreds names if possible as part of a comprehensive boycott of this project)