Urban Fold

Vancouver Neighborhoods "Completely Changed" by Homeless Shelters

Gary Mason describes how Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson's policy of rapid expansion of homeless shelters -- including two in residential areas -- has "completely changed" those neighborhoods.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson announced last year that his city would eradicate homelessness by 2015, and he began this program by opening 5 homeless shelters, two of which were in residential neighborhoods containing a "YWCA daycare, a Montessori school and a low-income seniors home. And condominium towers." As Mason writes,

"The 'low-barrier' shelters are intended for the hardest-to-home. Those who use them are allowed to bring their shopping carts and pets in with them. Drug users aren't turned away the way they are in other shelters. While no one argues the need for these kinds of accommodations as temporary measures, the problem is the type of individuals they attract if open for long. Drug addicts attract drug suppliers. Drug suppliers attract young boys to run their drugs. Consequently, there are emerging gangs of young kids – drug mules – congregating in the area and intimidating residents...residents have had enough."

Full Story: Vancouver Mayor's quick fix for homeless a long-term nuisance


Build Your Own Paper Block City

Urban Fold is an all-inclusive kit that allows anyone to build the city of their dreams with a few simple folds.
building block set

NEW! Build the world you want to see

Irresistible block set for adults when placed on a coffee table or desk, and great fun for kids.

Essential Readings in Urban Planning

Planning on taking the AICP* Exam? Register for Planetizen's AICP * Exam Preparation Course to save $25.
Book cover of Where Things Are from Near to Far

Where Things Are From Near to Far

This engaging children's book about planning illustrates that "every building has its place."