Riekie Armstrong, with Protecting Maple Ridge, wants Royal Crescent, to be used for seniors housing. (Phil Melnychuk/THE NEWS)

B.C. residents against housing for homeless camp out in protest

Campers want BC Housing to consult on temporary supportive housing

A new protest camp has been set up in Maple Ridge, this one on Royal Crescent, where B.C. Housing wants to build a 55-unit temporary modular housing complex to house the city’s homeless.

“We’re occupying the land in favour of seniors residences,” said Riekie Armstrong, with the Facebook group Protecting Maple Ridge.

A handful of protesters moved on to the site Thursday, hours after the old Mussallem house was hauled away to the Maple Ridge Cemetery, where it will serve as a caretaker’s house. Bylaws and police have both stopped by and are OK with the camp.

Armstrong opposes B.C. Housing’s plan to build the modular housing complex.

“We’re going to keep the place nice and clean. There won’t be any garbage.”

She added that Maple Ridge has housed many people.

“We’ve done enough.”

She said many seniors live in the area.

“This is no place for a campful of drug addicts.”

B.C. Housing intends to build modular homes and provide 24/7 supervision and will offer access to mental health and addiction treatment and life skills programs.

The modular home facility will be operated by Coast Mental Health, which also operates Alouette Heights, second stage housing in Maple Ridge.

Ahmed Yousef, with Burnett Street Neighbours, the group that opposes an 85-unit supportive housing complex and shelter proposed for at 11749 Burnett St., wants B.C. Housing to consult with the public before it starts construction of the temporary modular homes on Royal Crescent.

“We’re now here to occupy the space to ensure that the province goes through the … proper public consultation before moving ahead with anything else that will go into our city and our community,” Yousef said.

B.C. Housing wants the modular homes open by the fall so that the residents of the tent city can move in before winter. It held an open house in March, but isn’t seeking approval because of the urgent need of those in the tent city.

Anita Place Tent City, just south of Lougheed Highway in Maple Ridge’s downtown, has been open for a year, just prioer to the 2017 provincial election.

Just Posted

Port Alberni soapbox derby has new track

Lower Argyle Street will be open to racers under six

Heat warning issued for Vancouver Island

Temperatures expected to cool down later this week

Vehicle catches fire near China Creek Marina

No injuries in blaze, according to witnesses

North Island College issues brief statement on bomb threat

Threat forced college to close all campuses for one day

Premier wades into fishery closure debate

John Horgan questions the federal government’s approach

REPLAY: B.C.’s best video this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

B.C. teen meets Nicolas Cage

Filming mob movie in downtown Vernon, B.C.

Critics claim Trump “defended a tyrant”

Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

B.C. MLAs choose new children’s watchdog

Jennifer Charlesworth has worked in government, social services

B.C. reporter calls out immigration photo on social media as fake news

A Vancouver reporter is calling out a British politician for spreading fake news

Hundreds of Arctic glaciers shrinking, disappearing

Out of 1,773 glaciers, 1,353 shrank significantly between 2000 and 2016

Indigenous housing providers worried Liberal proposals could put families on the streets

Indigenous housing providers raise alarms about future of federal funding deals

B.C. baseball team offers funeral prize pack

Wednesday’s West Coast League game in Victoria features draw for end-of-life package

Black Press Media journalists win big at Canadian community newspaper awards

Newsrooms earn recognition for editorial and photography excellence

Most Read