British Columbia

Victoria tent city homeless camp to get running water, flushing toilet

The province says plumbing is going in at Victoria's homeless camp in response to neighbours' complaints. One hundred people have been living in the camp since last spring.

Plumbing for 100 people comes in response to neighbours' complaints

The homeless camp outside Victoria's downtown courthouse started as a few tents in the spring of 2015. (Megan Thomas/CBC)

Plumbing is being installed at a tent city set up on the lawn of Victoria's courthouse.

The province is installing running water and a flushing toilet at the homeless camp, where about 100 people have been living since last spring.

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps says the plumbing comes in response from neighbourhood concerns, such as the smell associated with the camp's port-a-potties.

Neighbours living near the site have called it an urban ghetto, saying they have picked up discarded needles, human waste and other garbage left in the area by campers.

Helps says the province is looking for other places to house the campers because no one wants the tent city to stay on the courthouse lawn permanently.

Last month the B.C. Supreme Court refused to grant the government an interim injunction to dismantle the camp, but the province is expected to go back to court later this year seeking a permanent injunction.