Effort ahead of pace, but Johnson Street Care Home renovations still in progress
The agency tasked with housing campers from the tent camp on Victoria’s courthouse lawn says 29 people have moved into housing in the first two days since the doors opened at a building bought by the province for the purpose.
The Portland Hotel Society says 14 campers moved into the former Central Care Home on Johnson Street on Tuesday, and 15 more arrived Wednesday.
The province bought the 140-unit building in June for $112 million to take in campers from the city’s tent city. The province subsequently won a court injunction to close the camp, when a BC Supreme Court judge set an August 8th deadline for the site to be cleared.
Patches of bare ground where tents used to stand were visible around the courthouse grounds Wednesday. And even one of the camp’s most outspoken supporters was pleased.
“It was absolutely amazing to see some people move in and come back today and be super happy, and coming back showered and clean with a bit of stability,” said Chrissy Brett.
Portland Hotel Society housing director Andy Bond said the expected pace to move campers into housing was around 10 people a day. While the pace depends on completing still-ongoing renovations at the facility, he said crews are working around the clock.