Save the Neighbourhood Community of Acadia Park
Current and past residents of UBC Student Family Housing in Acadia Park believe that there is a unique community that deserves the respect, support, and saving grace of UBC. Acadia Park is the visceral embodiement of UBC Trek. For over forty years, hundreds and hundreds of graduate students and undegraduates too, have completed their degrees knowing they and their children and spouses were living in a safe, supportive and caring community where a hello might one day turn into a helping hand. Many babies were born into this caring community over the years. First toddling walks were made in the grasses of the greenspace. But such living is under threat now. The older courts are slated for demolition this fall and there are more changes to come. Students in their final year or even months of their program are being faced with expensive forced moves, where time and money are already in limited supply. We the undersigned believe that the student family community should be respected and sustained as follows: 1. All students currently living in housing slated for decommissioning should receive equivalent housing at the same rate they are currently paying. If this means delaying demolition, then there should indeed be a delay. 2. The University should initiate a process for archiving the stories and history of the Acadia Student Family Housing. A gathering of stories from current residents in particular would help in planning what is a liveable, affordable, and sustainable community for the future. 3. The legacy of the community experience which includes the health and welfare of student families, must be both understood and maintained for future generations of students. Safe, affordable, and health sustaining housing contributes to the academic goals of students. And in turn this serves UBC's desire to be a highly ranked and well regarded internationally celebrated university. 4. UBC must re-examine the short term demolition plans and the long term plan to change much of Acadia to non-academic use, which means market, profit-making housing and increasing density for student family housing, at the expense of green space. 5. Recognize the rights of children of students. In particular for those whose student-parents travel from places far from extended family support, recognize they are well served by the lifegiving environment of Acadia Park. This must be saved for future generations of students. 6. Acadia Park pre-school, not originally slated for demolition, should be maintained and supported as part of the plan to serve the needs of the children who live in Acadia Park.