Victoria council narrowly approves transitional housing for former Tally Ho

Neighbours angry about decision to allow temporary three-year permit

Victoria council followed up a sometimes heated public hearing Thursday night by voting 5-3 to approve a three-year temporary use permit for the former Tally Ho Motel at 3020 Douglas St.

The facility will be managed by the Victoria Cool Aid Society, which had proposed 52 units of transitional housing, with 24/7 staffing by trained resident support workers, access to health care and counselling for residents, and regular patrols around the exterior of the buildings.

In granting a narrow approval and after much wringing of hands, council made it clear that Cool Aid must undertake planning and design for the facility with input from the Burnside Gorge Community Association, residents and other area stakeholders, and fully adhere to the new Burnside Gorge local area plan.

During the public hearing, residents and merchants in the area voiced concerns over the concentration of supportive and transitional housing facilities in their neighbourhood and spoke of finding needles, drugs, vandalism and being forced to clean up the bodily fluids of others.

“Our neighbourhood is exhausted and terrified,” said Vicki Jackson, a Gorge Road resident and former chair of the Burnside Gorge Community Association land-use committee.

She said the neighbourhood has in some ways been proud to host multiple residences for people without the same advantages in life as others, but she added, “We’re compassionate, we’re hopeful and we’re full – and we’re exhausted.”

RELATED: Neighbours want details on Tally Ho transitional housing in Victoria

All councillors indicated they heard the neighbours’ concerns about weariness.

Coun. Pam Madoff noted that the Rock Bay Landing experiment has not worked out as well as first anticipated by Cool Aid when it opened in 2010, and has coloured neighbours’ views of such transitional housing facilities.

Another suggested that residents from the soon-to-close Choices transitional shelter in View Royal, who tend to be more stable, may take up some of the spaces at the Tally Ho.

The permit also includes a condition requiring Cool Aid to provide contractual obligations to mitigate community impacts from the facility. No opening date has been established.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

“Winter Heart” a musical gift to Sooke

Community Choir’s Christmas offering a thoughtful seasonal concert

Alleged child abduction attempt in Langford a family issue, RCMP say

Const. Matt Baker with West Shore RCMP says parents should not worry

City of Victoria to see 588 affordable housing units

Provincial funding is aiming to see 4,900 new mixed-income rental properties across B.C.

Building permits up, but residential construction softening in Greater Victoria

Greater Victoria led the province in issuing new building permits in August

Wolverines hopeful for deep playoff run

Sooke high school has young ‘talented team’

VIDEO: Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

Vancouver Island remembers

Important stories shared as Islanders salute those who made the greatest sacrifice

Student arrested at Vancouver Island elementary school

Pupils never in danger, incident unrelated to the school

POLL: Have BC Ferry wiats ever forced you to cancel your travel plans?

Many BC Ferry passengers heading out from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen on… Continue reading

Stink at B.C. school prompts complaints of headaches, nausea

Smell at Abbotsford school comes from unauthorized composting operation

Fear of constitutional crisis escalates in U.S.; Canadians can relate

Some say President Donald Trump is leading the U.S. towards a crisis

Racist slur cleaned off memorial at Qualicum First Nation graveyard

Site was hit by vandals on Friday; many immediately offered support and assistance

B.C.-based pot producer Tilray reports revenue surge, net loss

Company remains excited about ‘robust’ cannabis industry

Canada stands pat on Saudi arms sales, even after hearing Khashoggi tape

Khashoggi’s death at Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul further strained Riyadh’s already difficult relationship with Ottawa

Most Read