Mon April 17 - More road speeds could drop

Plus: Allegations that Victoria bylaw is mistreating unhoused locals

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Bay Centre

Good morning !

Today we’ll be heading out to cover a small event honouring a fascinating local. That story will run soon, but in the meantime I want to mention that we always welcome your email tips about not only serious issues and people being mistreated but also the people and things making the region better.

Today we look at more potential street speed changes, and at calls for changes to how cities treat people on the street.

Cam Welch

More road speeds could soon drop, following Esquimalt’s new survey

📸 Proposed Esquimalt street speeds. Image from Township survey

For three more weeks, Esquimalt is surveying people who live and work in the Township about its plans. In December, Committee of the Whole moved to pursue speed limit reductions to 40km/h on major roads (including Esquimalt Road, Craigflower, Admirals, and Lampson) and 30km/h on others.

A span of Tillicum and Colville, from the Gorge over to Admirals, would get 40km/h status. Conversely, Admirals and Lampson would drop from 40km/h Major Roads to 30km/h regular roads below Esquimalt Road.

Staff are gathering public input before the move is finalized, and are also seeking input on the signage around the changel. A three-year signage rollout would first target the main roads before moving to schools and parks and finally local roads.

Reduced road speeds have been looked at by the municipality for some time, and there was a specific campaign last year to make all of Lampson 30km/h rather than only a certain stretch. Parents in the neighbourhood told Capital Daily that cars often kept going at Lyall’s previous speed when entering its school zone.

This speed reduction move comes amid efforts by Victoria and Saanich to lower road speeds in order to make crashes less likely and more survivable. On May 1, most Quadra-Hillside roads drop to 30km/h.

Capital Bulletin

⛅ ​Mix of sun and cloud today. Cloudy near noon with 60% chance of afternoon showers. Wind southeast 40km/h, gusting to 60 near water but lightening late in the afternoon. High 10C / low 5C.

🎥 TV filming in Sooke: April 29’s closures for “at least one episode of a popular TV series” are 7am-2pm at Ed MacGregor Park, including the Rotary Pier and Sooke Marine Boardwalk, and Whiffin Spit (6:30am-8pm).


Amid spotlight on Vancouver decampments, Victoria bylaw conducts sweep and faces allegations of harassment

When someone puts everything that they own on a patch of land that they don’t, what happens to those items when they’re kicked off? The handling of unhoused people’s property has been in the spotlight this month in Vancouver, where the city’s push to dismantle the East Hastings encampment has been accused of destroying possessions and wasting brand-new donated items such as tents.

UVic professors of public health, nursing, social work, and other fields were among the 700 Canadian academics whose open letter on Friday called on Vancouver to change its approach. The letter cited multi-city research indicating that forced displacements lead to more deaths, worse health outcomes, and more violence.

Last week in Victoria, too, sweeps drew scrutiny after bylaw officers removed an encampment on Princess. One resident told CHEK he understands the area was messy, but said they were trying to build better shelters than tents and now have nowhere to go.

📸 A March 10 rally protesting city enforcement and a court verdict favouring it. Photo: Alexandra Mehl / Local Journalism Initiative

Lawsuit and rally criticize bylaw conduct

Allegations that bylaw excessively removes and destroys possessions have been common for years in Victoria, and were brought to court last month. A lawsuit claimed items donated to a supply tent in fall 2021, during the COVID outbreaks in local shelters, were removed and returned incompletely and in worse condition.

That suit was dismissed by BC’s Civil Resolution Tribunal on the grounds that the advocate who brought it simply had no standing on items she had delivered as gifts. The city spent $5,000 to fight the $500 claim out of concern it could impact future bylaw enforcement.

The court result drew out further allegations of harassment by bylaw officers, from theft and damage of impounded property to using a water hose on people sleeping outside. Victoria’s bylaw director denies the claims, saying officers follow the rules and ensure “safe passage of people, bikes, and vehicles” on roads and paths.

Read the full story on the suit, and the broader dispute, at Capital Daily.



Over 50 Reasons to visit this Mother’s Day Market

Celebrate mom and all the special women in your life at the “Meet the Makers” market at the Bay Centre on May 6.

This is your chance to meet and support over 50 local artisans from the Victoria region.

Capital Picks

🎶 Drop-In Choir singing Harry Styles: The All Together Now Drop-In Choir will be meeting at the Victoria Event Centre at 7pm to learn and sing “As It Was” by Harry Styles. Tickets $15.

🐝 Meet The Root Cellar bees! Join The Root Cellar Thursday, Apr. 20 at 4pm to meet their beekeeper and learn all about The Root Cellar's bees. Sign up here.*

🐐 Invasive species removals: April 19 at Highrock Cairn Park in Esquimalt, followed by planting native shrubs on April 23 at Ocean View Park in Colwood. Read Capital Daily’s feature on the local volunteers tackling invasive plants.

🏠 The next phase is here! Introducing ELIZA South. Offering 1-bedroom, 1-bedroom + den, and 2-bedroom suites. Discover why so many others are calling ELIZA home! Register today!*

🤝 Now hiring: Assistant Deli Manager at The Root Cellar.

*Sponsored Listing

In Other News

⚽ Pacific FC wins home opener, in its first sibling-rivalry game

On Saturday the Langford-based soccer team defeated the new Langley-based Vancouver FC, which is owned by the same group. Veteran Manny Aparicio’s goal in the 81st minute secured the 1-0 win. The team won the Canadian championship in late 2021, but losses of core players to rivals and retirement have set it back. PFC still made the 2022 playoffs, but lost in the first round.

🏥 Removal of mask requirement in health facilities criticized by BC Human Rights Commissioner

Commissioner Kasari Govender wrote last week that at-risk people (such as seniors and those with extreme clinical vulnerability) should be able to rely on health and care facilities, most of all, to be places they can go without risk. The change creates a “violation of their rights to equal participation in our communities,” she wrote, saying that others are only minimally inconvenienced by masks. The change was made in an early-April conference at which health officials said BC is emerging from the pandemic.

💵 Comox restaurant penalized $48K for foreign worker treatment

Hot Chinese Kitchen also cannot hire temporary foreign workers for two years after federal evaluation determined that it failed to submit documentation, provide the pay and work conditions laid out in the employment offer, and provide an environment free of abuse.

In Case You Missed It

🏫 Court petition over Vic High land use: A new move seeks to overturn the affordable housing project beside the school and restore older plans to expand the sports track. Also in Sunday’s newsletter: History Mystery and your picks for the best local sushi.

🗳️ Parmar will run for MLA: As had been widely expected, the school trustee announced his NDP candidacy for the Langford-Juan de Fuca seat vacated by John Horgan. [The Westshore]

💊 Heart Pharmacy has a list of pharmacy services that can save you an arduous journey of finding a doctor's appointment. Learn more here.*

🚓 Officer disarmed in nightlife scuffle: Police allege that officers were assaulted by one intoxicated patron who refused to leave a Yates club and by a second patron who had been made to leave the club earlier; both were arrested. VicPD announced last week that an officer briefly lost their weapon in the process.

🍁 Laurel Collins, MP for Victoria, continues to offer constituents support with federal government services. Get support by reaching out at [email protected] or 250-363-3600.*

*Sponsored Listing

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