British Columbia

Tents dismantled at Oppenheimer Park as city begins field maintenance

Dozens of people who have been camping at Vancouver's Oppenheimer Park for months were told to pack up and leave the area on Wednesday, as city crews said the park needed to be empty for maintenance work.

Dozens of campers asked to leave after living at Downtown Eastside park for months

Only a dozen tents remained on the outskirts of Oppenheimer Park on Wednesday after a tent community, which had been at the park since winter, was ordered to leave so the field could be repaired. (CBC)

Dozens of people who have been camping on a section of Vancouver's Oppenheimer Park for months were told to leave the site on Wednesday, as city crews said the park needed to be cleared for maintenance work.

At least 50 people have been staying at the park, in the city's Downtown Eastside, consistently since the winter. The tent community was dismantled Wednesday afternoon, leaving only a dozen tents left standing on the outskirts of the grassy field.

A fence went up around the turfed area and city staff said the area will stay closed temporarily for fertilizing, seeding and irrigation, but that shelters elsewhere in the park will be left alone. A statement said the fence will come down in mid-June.

The Carnegie Community Action Project started tracking the number of people living in the park in January. The group said the number jumped from about 30 to 50 over a month.

City staff said a fence will stay up around Oppenheimer Park until mid-June. (CBC)

With files from Eva Uguen-Csenge

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