Rent in the Downtown Eastside has been on the rise and Woodward’s-style projects are to blame, according to protesters at a rally in the area yesterday.

“Woodward’s has had bad ripple effects on the low-income and aboriginal community.

Indirectly, it caused speculation; the land value increased,” said Wendy Pedersen of the Carnegie Community Action Project.

According to CCAP, someone on welfare has about $375 for rent, which leaves them with very few choices outside of single-room occupancy hotels.

“The rent in hotels (SROs), which are the last step before homelessness, are going up, so people are ending up in the streets,” said Pedersen.

A survey done by CCAP shows that the number of SROs charging rent above $400 has increased by 44 per cent between 2008 and 2009.

“We’re asking the city of Vancouver to hold off on adding more condos to the Downtown Eastside until you find a way to subsidize people in this neighbourhood,” said Petersen.