Tent city campers leaving Saanich property unsure where they'll go next
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Friday, October 12, 2018 6:49PM PDT
A dozen or so homeless campers who have formed a roving tent city in the Capital Region for months now are on the move once again.
The group moved from Goldstream Park, where they camped for about three weeks, to a private property on West Saanich Road in early October – unbeknownst to the landowner.
It was a tenant who extended the invitation to the group, creating complications when it came to evicting them.
Owner Sam Seera eventually worked out a plan with the group to move on Friday, and as of the evening, it appeared they were moving out.
Tents were being taken down and a U-Haul truck was on site to transport campers and their gear, according to Seera.
"I think it's fair to say that they can no longer stay here," he said. "It's not fair to the neighbours, not fair to anybody, plus we have an agreement. I did my part."
Camp organizer Chrissy Brett said the group was thankful for being able to stay at the property.
"We will be leaving," Brett confirmed. "I think where we're going to land is still up in the air."
Prior to moving to Goldstream Park, the group had claimed a portion of land in Saanich's Regina Park for months before a court injunction forced them out.
They briefly moved on to Ministry of Transportation land along the Pat Bay Highway before heading to Goldstream.
While it's unclear where campers will go next, they won't be moving into provincially promised modular housing anytime soon.
Recently the District of Saanich offered up land for a number of temporary modular units, but BC Housing rejected the site, saying it was not adequate for construction.