TC: Urban Safety on Town Hall Agenda

March 30, 2009 at 9:04 am Leave a comment

Urban safety on town-hall agenda

Times Colonist
March 30, 2009

Victoria police Chief Jamie Graham will address the forum, which will also include representatives from city council, the Downtown Victoria Business Association and the Coalition to End Homelessness. “We’re going to have an opportunity for these people to get up … and just talk about what the issues are and how they’re handling them,” said Robert Randall, chair of the Downtown Residents Association.

Victoria’s downtown is much like a huge “dysfunctional” family with many competing interests, Randall said.

“It’s really complex. In some ways it’s getting a lot better. We’re seeing a lot of really positive work from some of angles. We’re seeing more residents in the downtown and lot of good businesses opening up so a lot of the dead parts of downtown that you really didn’t want to go to are now walkable.

“The needle exchange is gone, so Cormorant Street is now a place you no longer avoid, but at the same time, Pandora’s getting a bit dicey although it’s still safe,” Randall said.

On the down side, Randall said, the downtown is beginning to see the emergence of a new breed of more aggressive drug dealers.

“That’s a bit worrying. So [the downtown] is going in both directions,” he said. “Overall I’m optimistic but I’m troubled about these continuing trends.

Entry filed under: City Hall, Harris Green, media, needle exhange, Our Place, safe injection sites, social issues, Victoria's economy.

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