New concerns about the street-entrenched population in downtown Vernon have got the attention of the City.
The Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce and businesses recently went public about crime and safety issues with the new temporary housing facility set to open next to the Gateway Shelter on 33rd Street.
Mayor Victor Cumming says getting people off the streets is a key value of council, and he’s confident that facility, and the new modular homes, will do that.
“This is a critical part of what were working on. Real hats off to BC Housing, they’ve done a tremendous job on the new facility that’s under construction as well as the temporary facility,” the mayor tells Beach Radio News.
Cumming points out people going into the temporary facility on 33rd Street will be moving into the permanent modular housing on 27th Avenue when its done.
“So they’ll be interviewed by BC Housing, and a number of things like that. We’re very concerned to get people off the streets in the winter. That’s just a key value of mine and a key value of council.”
Cumming says the city is also looking to address lighting concerns that were raised.
“We sent staff down there, and there is one light that’s out. We’ve contacted BC Hydro about that, and we’re going to be look at the area to see if additional lighting would be helpful, so yes, we’re on this. This is just really important,” adds Cumming.
The mayor says the issues are the same as before, but now tied to the new facility.
“It brings with it some other concerns, so therefore we’re having these meetings with people to make sure everybody is on the same page.”