A Seasons House case worker (left) speaks to Quesnel residents about the proposed building for Elliott St.                                Melanie Law photo

A Seasons House case worker (left) speaks to Quesnel residents about the proposed building for Elliott St. Melanie Law photo

Quesnel residents divided over homeless housing project

BC Housing holds information session on proposed Seasons House relocation to Elliott St.

BC Housing, in partnership with Quesnel Shelter & Support Society, held a public information meeting Tuesday to brief Quesnel residents on the proposed building of a supportive housing facility on Elliott St.

The development, which is proposed for the vacant land at 353/361/375 Elliott St., would provide self-contained supportive housing units and shelter for individuals who are homeless or at risk, and would close the current Seasons House location on Carson Avenue.

The new building would provide 28 units for independent supportive housing, eight year-round shelter beds, four units of support recovery and up to 10 extreme weather response beds from November to March.

The public was invited to read through information on the benefits of the project and speak to Seasons House and BC Housing representatives about the plans.

Many West Quesnel residents are concerned the location of the proposed building is too near elementary schools and daycares.

One objector said: “They’re telling us that is the only place they can find that’s suitable. Wrong. There are lots of empty buildings in Quesnel. The city owns lots of land. We’ve got an elementary school right there. Put it somewhere else.”

Another expressed concern with the type of facility it will house.

“If it was low-income housing, yes. But not a treatment centre, not an addiction centre. Absolutely not.”

Others in favour of the project said the proposed extended support services are much needed.

Kathy Juric, a family support worker at North Cariboo Aboriginal Family Program Society, said: “[The new facility] will close some of the gaps we have; the people who need support, they don’t fit into my criteria, they won’t fit into another agency’s criteria, but with this, they fit and they can work as hard as they need to be successful.”

“I think expanding it is appropriate. I’m behind Seasons House staff and whatever needs to be done to have bigger and better services for their clientele.”

Quesnel local Ken Carlson said: “Honestly, it’s a great idea but it’s really divisive for the community. It’s two blocks from a school and two blocks from four daycares.

“Where are the assurances that this is going to be safe? If that can be sorted out, I don’t think there’s an issue.”

“If the staff at Seasons House who are doing the actual work say that this will work, that it’s not a Band-aid solution, then I’m all for it.”

Seasons House caseworker Ian Hardy agreed. “People are posting on Facebook about the needles and things that they’re finding [on Elliott St.] already; it goes to show it’s already there.

“The great thing about Seasons House going there is that support workers can help the community to clean the area up, and keep it clean and safe.”

Seasons House social worker Amber-Lee Lloyd said the information session had seen many Quesnel residents come through.

“I think we’re answering a lot of unanswered questions. There was a lot of misinformation out there, so we’ve go the correct information out quickly now.”

The City of Quesnel had planned an hour-long public hearing Aug. 29, but a representative said due to the response at the information session, the date is likely to change to allow for the allocation of more time for the issue in front of City Council.

A date for a public hearing on the housing project will be finalized soon, said City of Quesnel officials.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A dust advisory is in place for Quesnel. Residents are asked to be careful near heavy traffic areas. (File Photo - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
Quesnel under dust advisory

High levels of dust in the air can be dangerous for people with COVID-19

The COVID-19 outbreak at the two Coastal GasLink workforce lodges has officially been declared over. (Lakes District News file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak at Coastal GasLink worksites declared over

In total, 56 cases were associated with the outbreak in the Burns Lake and Nechako LHAs

A tree near the Sword Avenue baseball diamond was felled by high winds. The diamond is planned to be decommissioned by the city of Quesnel. (Cassidy Dankochik Photo - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
Quesnel planning on shutting down ballfields

City council hopes maximize the usage at West Fraser Timber Park and Barlow Creek

Cookies were available to celebrate the grand opening of the North Cariboo Seniors’ Council in Oct. of 2020. (File Photo - Quesnel Cariboo Observer)
Quesnel seniors’ group to get COVID-19 funding boost

City council approved giving the North Cariboo Seniors Council $100k in provincial grant money

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

The District of Saanich’s communications team decided to take part in a viral trend on Thursday and photoshopped U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders into a staff meeting photo. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Bernie Sanders makes guest appearance municipal staff meeting in B.C.

Vancouver Island firefighters jump on viral trend of photoshopped U.S. senator

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Surrey provincial court. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
New COVID-19 protocols set for provincial courthouses

The new rules were issued on Jan. 21, and took effect immediately

Police in Vancouver looking for male suspect who allegedly spat and attacked a store manager for not wearing a mask, at 7-Eleven near Alma Street and West 10th Avenue just before noon on Dec. 17, 2020. (Vancouver police handout)
VIDEO: Man spits on 7-Eleven manager over mask rule, sparking Vancouver police probe

‘Unfortunately, the store manager sustained a cut to his head during the assault’

The Vancouver-based SAR team successfully rescued two lost snowshoers off of the west side of Tim Jones Peak in the early morning of Monday, Jan. 19. (North Shore Rescue photo)
B.C.’s busiest SAR team raises alarm after 2021 begins with fatality, multiple rescues

‘People beyond ski resort areas of Seymour, Grouse, and Cypress go without cell reception,’ SAR warns

Police are searching for an alleged sex offender, Nicole Edwards, who they say has not returned to her Vancouver halfway house. (Police handout)
Police hunt for woman charged in ‘horrific’ assault who failed to return to Surrey halfway house

Call 911 immediately if you see alleged sex offender Nicole Edwards, police say

Most Read