Despite making a promise to all the suckers who voted in favour of the Olympics that no one would be evicted because of the Games, the first proof that bobsledders and skiers hate poor people has happened at the Golden Crown Hotel in the Downtown Eastside.
Earlier this month, the owners of the 28-unit hotel at 116 W. Hastings gave the tenants two-month eviction notices so it can renovate the dump for Olympic labourers. The owner/manager have both said they want the drug users/dealers out so they can fill it with construction workers and charge rents $100-$300 more expensive. The cruel irony of the Golden Crown evictions is that the hotel sits right across from the Woodward’s development – the supposed symbol of revitalization of the Downtown East Side.
Community activists have warned for years that the Olympics and Woodward’s would do nothing but gentrify the neighbourhood and push all the druggies out. “NO WAY!” said the millionaire developers. “We want to be down with poor people. We love poor people and all their poverty and poorness. It’s hip and urban and makes our cocks hard.” But it turns out that giving Bob Rennie an erection doesn’t pay your rent.
There have already been a number of evictions in the Downtown Eastside related to the development boom, but the Golden Crown is the first time owners have uttered the dirty ‘O’ word with their eviction. Now don’t say we didn’t warn you when a figure skater kicks you out of your apartment.