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105-year-old B.C. hotel evacuated over structural issues

JOC News Service
105-year-old B.C. hotel evacuated over structural issues

VANCOUVER, B.C. – All occupants of Vancouver’s Balmoral Hotel were safely evacuated after the 105-year-old building was declared structurally unsound. According to the city, the building has been secured and is now considered an active construction zone.

The city’s chief building official has ordered the owners to install temporary shoring inside the building to mitigate the serious structural deficiencies that necessitated the evacuation.

That order establishes a deadline of July 14 for that work and city inspectors will be monitoring compliance.

The evacuation decision, issued by the chief building official earlier this month, was based on assessment and recommendations of structural engineers and building code consultants that confirmed significant life safety risks to occupants of the building. In order to limit structural loads and minimize the number of people in the building, the chief building official issued an additional order on June 8 restricting access to tenants and authorized personnel.

The City of Vancouver and BC Housing secured new homes for the over 150 residents of the Balmoral Hotel. This includes securing additional housing for 10 women who were living at the Balmoral who did not have tenancy agreements.

BC Housing will continue to support the non-profits who are working with former Balmoral tenants, to ensure their housing placements are sustainable long-term.

In a release, the city extended its thanks to all teams who worked hard to support occupants of the Balmoral Hotel through the evacuation, including staff from BC Housing and Vancouver Coastal Health, and to the tenants for their co-operation.

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