To the editor:
Re: "Comox project an affront to West End," Letters, July 20.
The only thing I'm a cheerleader for is creating more rental housing. I asked the City of Vancouver to preserve all of the original Maxine's and incorporate it into the new development-an idea I have been promoting for years-and pressed for more rental. Forty-nine rental units may not seem like much to the tens of thousands of condo owners in our city but to renters in this market they are precious.
As for the purported 800 units of market rentals Greg Helten says were built in the West End, I'd be surprised if there were 800 units of any type of market housing built here over the past 15 years, let alone market rentals. Besides, it is the past 10 years since the provincial Liberals came to power and began massive cuts in programs and spending that have seen the intensification of the rental housing crisis in this city. This, coupled with former NPA-dominated city councils' gentrification of most city neighbourhoods. Renters should be very cautious about supporting views such as Helten's (who lives near 1401 Comox St.). He and the others, mainly property owners who seem to form the core of anti-STIR groups, have no one's interest at heart but their own. They offer no solutions, only delays, to dealing with the housing crisis because they prefer the status quo of rental housing erosion and luxury condo replacement as they believe it will increase their property values.
Blair Petrie, Vancouver