If you drive by 6025 Uplands Drive there are no signs posted on the property to let the community know that construction will start in August on this Nanaimo social housing project. Posting of on-site development signs is required in most cities in Canada.
At the June 17, 2013 Nanaimo Council meeting, City Council approved spending $275,000 for architecture fees and providing required services to get the Uplands Drive project “development ready.” The housing project will be called Uplands Walk.
Pacifica Housing will be operating 6025 Uplands Drive and 1612 Dufferin Crescent social housing projects. It was decided to begin the Uplands Drive social housing project first.
Pacifica Housing is registered as a charity. According to their financial information filed in 2011 they received $4,210,368 in funding from the province and had $5,897,197 in property not used for charitable or administration purposes. They also spent $1,255,494 on management and administration for that year. They operate 27 buildings in the Victoria area, 3 in Nanaimo and 1 in Duncan.
One of the concerns the neighbourhood has about this project is the proposed tenants will be hard-to-house drug addicts.
Why is drug rehabilitation not provided first and then clean sober residents rewarded with subsided housing? Dover Bay High School is just down the road; how will this affect drug trafficking in the neighborhood?
The people housed in this new complex will need to find money to feed their drug habits. Around the corner on Hammond Bay Road is the parking lot of the Nanaimo Regional District and further is the parking lot of the Woodgrove Shopping Mall.
The BC government has divested itself from social housing and many private operators have surfaced to profit as they gain ownership of key public land parcels.