Mayor Welcomes Provincial Government’s Progress on Riverview

Mayor Sam Sullivan today welcomed reports that the British Columbia government is planning a “massive” development of the current Riverview facility to create more social, market and assisted housing in the Lower Mainland. Earlier this year, Mayor Sullivan said he wanted the provincial government to reconsider the downsizing of the Riverview facility.
“Premier Campbell and Minister Rich Coleman deserve a lot of credit for the work they are doing to establish more social and supportive housing in Vancouver and across the province,” said Mayor Sullivan. “The announcement today about the province’s plan to develop the Riverview site is a very positive step to help address many of the social challenges we face throughout Metro Vancouver.”

Media reports today indicate BC Housing Minister Rich Coleman plans to redevelop the Riverview facility – situated on 98 hectares in Coquitlam. According to the report, it will include market housing, social housing and housing for the mentally ill and disabled – including beds for those who need institutional care.
“I have been hounoured to serve on the Premier’s Task Force on Homelessness, Mental Health and Addictions,” concluded Mayor Sam Sullivan. “Fighting drug addiction and improving access to mental health services is a national issue that requires cooperation from all levels of government. I look forward to working with our local partners in the months ahead on behalf of the most vulnerable residents of our society.”
Recent estimates on homelessness indicate that approximately 1200 people live on Vancouver’s streets. Approximately 40% of these individuals suffer from a mental illness.
Today’s report complements the announcement earlier this week whereby the Province will invest in over 75 new housing units in Vancouver under the Aboriginal Housing Initiative.