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Update on Order issued to SRO owner under Standards of Maintenance Bylaw

December 1 2015

Lion Hotel, 316 Powell Street
Photograph by Google

Today, heat and hot water were fully restored throughout the Lion Hotel following a Standards of Maintenance Bylaw Order issued by us on November 16 to the owner of the Single-Room Occupancy (SRO) hotel. 

Events leading up to the restoration of heat and hot water of the hotel

The Lion Hotel, located at 316 Powell (between Gore and Dunlevy), is a 70-room privately owned SRO hotel. It had been without heat in certain parts of the building since November 11.

The owner did not comply with the first order to immediately deal with the issue and as a result, the Order was referred to persecution for charges. An additional Order was issued on November 25 notifying the owner to perform the work to supply heat and hot water to the building by January 26, 2016, or we will step in to do so and recoup the costs.

The owner of the Lion Hotel replaced the heating and hot water systems three to four years ago. However, the system installed was not appropriate for a building of this size and as a result the system was failing. The system is based around four boilers. Three of the four boilers are now working and parts for the fourth have been ordered and will be installed when they arrive, which is anticipated to be tomorrow. 

Protecting tenants by enforcing the bylaw

Staff continue to keep pressure on the owner and are working with Fire Prevention and Vancouver Coastal Health to address all outstanding violations in this building. As well, staff are looking at other options to address these type of situations ‎in a more expeditious way.

In September 2014, City Council amended the Standards of Maintenance Bylaw to help ensure an expedited process to protect the health and safety of SRO tenants.

Read the Council report about the bylaw changes PDF file (60 KB)

So far in 2015, over 150 compliance letters and 75 Orders have been issued under our Standards of Maintenance Bylaw. In 2014, according to the City Prosecutor’s Office, the total amount of penalties imposed on closed/resolved Standards of Maintenance cases was $6,800.

Research rental building safety and maintenance records

Our  Rental Standards Database was launched in 2012 and we have since seen a significant improvement in building safety with an 80% drop in the number of by-law infractions between 2012 and 2015.

The Rental Standards Database enables you to research rental buildings for fire safety, building safety, and general maintenance issues.

Use the Rental Standards Database