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Marpole protesters block temporary homeless housing, and the city’s not having it

Protesters outside the proposed site of modular housing near three Vancouver schools say it would bring drugs and crime to the neighbourhood.
Protesters outside the proposed site of modular housing near three Vancouver schools say it would bring drugs and crime to the neighbourhood. Global News

Marpole protesters have been blocking a temporary housing project for the homeless from being built, and the City of Vancouver is not going to take it.

That much is apparent from a Friday news release in which the city announced plans to seek an injunction against the protesters, alongside BC Housing and the Provincial Rental Housing Corporation.

WATCH: Marpole modular housing protest

Click to play video 'Marpole modular housing protest' Marpole modular housing protest
Marpole modular housing protest – Nov 11, 2017

Protesters have been blocking trucks from accessing the site so they can start construction on a project that is expected to house 78 units for homeless people in three, two-storey buildings, the city said.

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Protesters have been blocking a sidewalk and an entrance to the site, despite receiving infraction notices, it added.

The protesters are now delaying construction so much that they’re affecting the anticipated move-in date for tenants.

READ MORE: Marpole modular housing protester says Stanley Park is the best place for homeless people

“While the city respects the residents’ right to protest, the temporary modular housing is urgently needed to address the immediate housing needs of Vancouver’s homeless residents while more permanent housing is being created, and the city does not want to see it delayed,” the news release said.

The city said it held four community information sessions in the neighbourhood as part of the development permit process.

The city said it also met with community groups such as the Marpole Community Association and Parent Advisory Committees from schools in the area.

Protesters against a modular housing project in Vancouver’s Marpole neighbourhood.
Protesters against a modular housing project in Vancouver’s Marpole neighbourhood. Global News

But protests have nevertheless persisted against the project, with one demonstrator suggesting that homeless people would be better off in Stanley Park.

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Protesters are concerned that the project could bring more crime and drug paraphernalia to the area.

Similar concerns attended the construction of similar homes that were built close to Sir John Franklin Elementary School in East Vancouver.

In a previous story, Kathleen Llewellyn-Thomas, the city’s general manager of community services, said there were “basically no problems” when it came to that site.