An open house on the potential relocation of Seasons House to Elliott Street in West Quesnel will take place tonight.
It is being hosted by BC Housing and the Quesnel Shelter and Support Society and runs from 5-30 until 7-30 at the Seniors Centre.
Mayor Bob Simpson says Council, like the public, has yet to see a formal proposal for the new facility.
For Council’s part, Simpson says they want to know what the operating agreement is going to be…
“We’ve made it known even in the first reading of this project that we do not want to simply move this seasons house as it is over to the west side where the property is proposed by BC Housing, that we need some substantive changes in the operating mode of Seasons House.”
Simpson doesn’t believe the existing model will work no matter where it’s located.
He says the current facility has created a number of problems in the downtown core…
“The no barriers, kind of safe house approach that has been taken at seasons house, predominantly as an oversubscribed homeless shelter, has created issues in the surrounding precinct with people using their drugs and leaving drug paraphernalia all over the place, businesses have been impacted quite significantly by that, that needs to change. And because it has been a no barriers or low barriers type of homeless shelter, we have basically concentrated a lot of people using that facility as a drop-in and hang out place and it’s concentrated a lot of behaviors that are problematic for the community, for tourists coming into the community and for our RCMP and first responders.”
Simpson says the city’s role is all of this is simply in a rezoning capacity.
He says the area is already zoned for multi residential dwellings but not an institutional multi-residential dwelling or what’s called “supportive housing.”