Dozens of protesters march in Parksville

Concerned residents say 222 Corfield is wrong location for supportive housing project

Dozens of protesters marched up and down Corfield Street in Parksville Monday (Jan. 14) to petition against a supportive housing project that they say would be built at the wrong location.

Petitioners and BC Housing are waiting for the result of a court case questioning the legality of the rezoning that allows for a supportive housing facility at 222 Corfield St.

Construction began at the site on Jan. 9, and protester Melanie Van Der Stock said it’s “very disconcerting.”

“There’s a legal battle already being fought which means they should have delayed (construction) until the whole thing was over and they’re not, they’re just going ahead,” Said Van Der Stock during the protest.

Van Der Stock said herself and fellow protesters are concerned Parksville citizens who believe the city needs affordable housing but not supportive housing. She said they also want another public hearing because she believes those not in support of the housing project were not heard at the first one last year. She believes about 60 per cent of residents were against the project.

“If the city had really been open-minded as they’re supposed to be in a public hearing, they would have heard that and they would have reacted appropriately but they didn’t. Their minds were made up and that’s not the purpose of a public hearing,” she said.

One Parksville resident showed up to the protest to rally against the anti-Corfield petitioners and show support for the housing project.

Peter Simkin said he wanted to show people that there are two sides to the story and that Parksville is a welcoming and supportive community.

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