Surrey boasts that the future lives here.
But the present looks pretty bleak for low-income seniors who could be bounced from their homes by developers wanting to raze certain residential properties to make way for newer, fancier digs.
It’s nothing new, and something we’ve editorialized about before, but it’s especially concerning in this area, with its super-inflated cost of living, real estate prices and rental fees, not to mention a scarcity of any semblance of affordable accommodations.
Last year, for example, roughly 80 Fleetwood residents found themselves on the hunt for a new home as their manufactured homes park came under redevelopment to clear the way for 137 new townhouses. Many were seniors who had lived there for 30 years or more.
Now, there is a rezoning application before the city seeking approval to pull down two buildings containing 154 apartments in Whalley to build, wouldn’t you know, more residential units.
This is happening while some 200 seniors, again in Fleetwood, might get the run-out as another developer applies to re-develop yet another manufactured home park. It’s no secret that many senior citizens are struggling to make ends meet these days, and this sort of stuff magnifies their tribulations.
How many approvals for this type of thing would it take to create a perfect storm in Surrey that would see a glut of low-income senior citizens hunting for a new home in an already saturated market?
Surrey city council must take great care to ensure its decisions do not help create a “rentermaggedon” for vulnerable senior citizens, many who have dutifully paid their taxes and helped build this community.