No wonder people are fleeing to suburban ghettos, when bidding wars put homes above a million dollars in Vancouver’s eastside I think its time to take a closer look because this just doesn’t make sense, where is the money coming from and why the ridiculous demand? International investment is always the theory thrown out but we don’t have a hard percentage on that figure. Perhaps it is these reasons we came up with a while back. The Olympic bumrush, I don’t know.
Sure we may be a semi major financial centre in North America (see pg 13 of that link) but this recent real estate boom/bubble is a bit ludicrous, especially since the world economy has yet to fully recover.
Furthermore, I don’t buy the Asian investor theory, perhaps it’s Vancouver’s green business movement, you know marijuana, it is estimated to be $7 to $10 billion a year industry. It may well be money from legitimate income sources but the numbers don’t seem add up, or do they? Perhaps we’ve become so accustomed to the whining of the wannabe downtrodden (see hipsters) and bought their bullshit version of Vancouver. You know where we all live in a shitty city with no future and nobody has a job with an annual income above $50,000.
Contrary to popular hipster beliefs, Vancouver is a desirable city and it has a lot to offer to the masses. It’s great for outdoors enthusiasts, summer time in the city is the best in Canada and probably North America and we are finally starting to change some of our archaic no fun city laws. It also has good shopping and great restaurants. However, to be a truly sustainable and inclusive city we need housing solutions for all income brackets, more rental properties (which is why the recent West End proposals makes sense) and more density around our rapid transit nodes. Although the city has drafted plans to add housing for another 70,000 residents (see South East False Creek aka Olympic Village and East Fraserlands) that still is not enough to satisfy the demand for dwellings in Vancouver. Ultimately with no available land it is time that council get serious about high density neighbourhoods (not mega towers, but more mid-rise like the Olympic Village) and finally bring affordable prices back to Vancouver, or at least the east side. If that is even possible?
photo courtesy of justagwailo.com