Hollyburn Properties Responds to Lynne Steven’s Renoviction

Report from Peter Grainger
Ctvbc.ca

Eighty-two-year-old Lynne Stevens is one of the latest and most prominent victims of “renoviction,” a trend which sees renters getting evicted on the pretense of major renovations.

Stevens is being evicted from her suite in Emerald Terrace, one of nearly two dozen West End properties near Downtown Vancouver owned by Hollyburn Properties.

“I thought maybe they had a heart,” Stevens told CTV News. “But they don’t have a heart or soul. It’s all about money.”

Flowers and cards of support for Lynne Stevens in her eviction fight are coming from all over B.C. But Stevens has a bigger fight on her hands, one with ovarian cancer.

Tenants-rights group Renters at Risk said that Stevens and other evictees are the victim of “community clear-cutting” and the West End is prime turf.

“The practice is to buy the building, do the renovations, evict the tenants, move on, raise the rents, in some cases double the rents,” Sharon Isaak of Renters at Risk told CTV News.

In a phone interview with CTV News, Hollyburn property manager Allan Wasel talked about the company’s policies and its plans for Lynne Stevens.

When asked about increased rents Wasel said, “We’re consistently putting money into the infrastructure of our buildings and that’s the only way to replenish the rental stock is by reinvesting in your buildings.”

As for Lynne Stevens, Wasel said, “We are currently negotiating with her son and very optimistic that we will be able come to a very agreeable settlement with her.”

Wasel then said they are working on a few options for Stevens, none of which include letting her stay in her current apartment, where she has lived for 41 years.

“This is dreadful what has happened to the West End,” said Stevens.

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