B.C.’s downtown cores in decline: ballot

“B.C. actually stands out as a lot greater than the remainder of the nation. However what jumped out at me is that it’s not simply Vancouver, it’s throughout the nation.” — Steve Mossop, govt vice-president at Leger and writer of the survey.

Over half of British Columbians suppose the downtown cores of B.C.’s large cities are in a state of decline, in keeping with a brand new ballot from Leger.

Fifty-four per cent of B.C. respondents mentioned the downtown core of their nearest main metropolis had considerably or considerably declined previously yr, practically 10 factors above the Canadian common of 45 per cent.

You are reading: B.C.’s downtown cores in decline: ballot

“B.C. actually stands out as a lot greater than the remainder of the nation,” mentioned Steve Mossop, govt vice-president at Leger and writer of the survey. “However what jumped out at me is that it’s not simply Vancouver, it’s throughout the nation.”

The outcomes counsel one other problem for cities struggling to return their downtown cores to pre-pandemic states of exercise.

COVID-19 was “an amplifier for the pre-existing inequalities occurring in cities,” mentioned Andy Yan, director of Simon Fraser College’s Metropolis Program.

“We at the moment are coming into the lengthy financial COVID and it’s one thing we haven’t deliberate out.

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“There have been sure parts of the inhabitants that had been capable of keep dwelling, maintain working and truly even perhaps lower your expenses,” mentioned Yan. “Others that couldn’t earn a living from home misplaced their jobs.” 

Forty-eight per cent of British Columbians now earn a living from home to some extent, in keeping with Mossop.

“That’s an enormous quantity,” he mentioned. 

Surveys have prompt that employers don’t have any quick plans to carry staff again to downtown workplaces.

“We don’t know if that’s going to be a brief or everlasting type of new geography,” mentioned Yan.

Homelessness, psychological well being, dependancy, crime and a scarcity of reasonably priced housing had been cited by respondents as main elements contributing to the decline of the downtown cores in B.C.’s large cities.

Ninety-nine per cent of survey respondents in B.C. cited “psychological well being challenges for susceptible populations” as a contributing issue, the best charge of any province. Rising crime charges had been cited by 98 per cent of respondents, and 97 per cent mentioned homelessness and drug dependancy had been contributing elements.

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Countrywide, 89 per cent of respondents mentioned psychological well being challenges as a significant explanation for decline, adopted by homelessness/housing affordability and rising crime. Solely Manitoba/Saskatchewan cited psychological well being, homelessness and crime at charges much like B.C.

Yan mentioned traditionally, many municipalities have both denied the existence of low-income residents or tried to go them off to different municipalities.

He famous that companies that help individuals experiencing homelessness, drug dependancy or psychological well being points are “not adequately distributed throughout the area” in Metro Vancouver.

Mossop agreed the foundation causes had been past anybody metropolis.

“It’s a nationwide and provincial well being disaster, it’s homelessness,” he mentioned. “It goes a lot deeper than what an area mayor can do.”

The online-based ballot, performed by Leger and The Canadian Press, was a consultant pattern of 1,509 Canadians aged 18 or older. It came about from Aug. 5 to Aug. 7. No margin of error was calculated for the reason that ballot used a non-probability pattern.

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