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My leaky next door neighbour

October 11, 2014

Work in progress. The leaky condo sleeps under cloudy skies and the threat of rain.

It’s a truism to say that the rain falls on the rich and poor alike but Vancouver is one of the places on earth where this isn’t strictly true — in Vancouver there are no end of expensive condominiums that leak in the rain like sieves.

One of them is right beside this homeless person’s bone dry parkade sleeping spot.

And sometimes when I’m tucked into my supposedly poor excuse for a place to sleep — particularly when the rain is crashing down on the tarp-covered building next door — I have to ask myself what it is that construction workers have against rich people?

After all, the building trades have had a hundred or so years to get used to Vancouver’s rain forest climate and there have been — to my knowledge at least — no similar epidemics of leaky laneway homes or duplexes or gas stations. And the old cheap stucco-clad three-storey walk-up apartment buildings that fill the Fairview neighbourhood have generally successfully defied the rain for some 60 years.

So are leaky condos evidence of some kind of passive-aggressive class warfare or what?

Sympathy for the devils next door

The leaky condo next door to my parkade sleeping spot has been wreathed in tarps, rain mesh and scaffolds for years. This is not the first time I’ve offered my sympathies.

The tarps and mesh are there to keep the rain off of the vulnerable exterior and the scaffolds are there for the construction workers who are theoretically there five days a week to repair the exterior.

In truth however, the workers appears to have the same effect as termites, gradually striping layers off the surface of the condo. If anything, the structure looks, to my untrained eye, even more exposed to the rain than when work began — whenever that was.

I no longer remember what the leaky condo looked like before the mesh and scaffolds and I wonder that it’s taking nearly as long to repair it as it took to build it in the first place.

Fortunately for both the condo owners and for their neighbours — homeless and otherwise — Vancouver is enjoying a particularly rain-free fall.

This is good. When the rain falls and the wind blows, the tarps on the leaky condo make such a godawful racket that it’s that much harder for anyone within earshot to get any sleep and, if we have nothing else in common, all of us — rich and poor alike — need our sleep. Click the image to enlarge it.

From → Development, Fairview

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