Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson says protesters at Occupy Vancouver need to leave, but he wants the protest to end peacefully.

The tent city on the lawn of the Vancouver Art Gallery has been in place since last Saturday, but Robertson said there are plans in place for upcoming holiday displays and other events on the space.

Robertson hasn't issued a deadline for when he'd like to see the space emptied.

"We don't want to see the kind of chaos we've seen in many other cities who have gone in and made mass arrests and created real chaos," Robertson told CTV News. "That's not the kind of ending we want here. We want it to be peaceful."

Robertson said the costs of the protests have soared and the city has made little headway trying to negotiate because the protesters have no clear leaders or agenda.

The group held a general assembly Monday night to discuss the matter.

Protester Lauren Gill said she's not aware of any negotiations between police and protesters, and she's not willing to negotiate with the city about leaving the camp-out.

"It's not a matter of negotiation because we're not on the same playing field," she said.

"There is a lot more of us than there are of them. And it's not a matter of negotiating and meeting in the middle, it's a matter of making demands and ensuring that they are met."

Gill believes that city hall hasn't tried to kick out protesters because of the upcoming civic election, saying Robertson doesn't "want to ruffle any feathers."

Several Occupy protesters interrupted a debate between Robertson and rival NPA mayoral candidate Suzanne Anton Tuesday afternoon, yelling, "We're not going anywhere."

The protest has cost more than $500,000 in policing and other costs to the city, but Robertson has says most of the costs are related to monitoring the situation during a large protest on the launch of the movement Oct. 15.