Wednesday, 29 February 2012
The last of the businesses moved out of 745 Thurlow St on Monday, as the building/parkade is being readied for demolition. In it's place Bentall Capital will be building it's sixth office skyscraper in the downtown core. Designed by Musson Cattell Mackay Partnership, the 23 storey building will have just over 400,000 square feet of rentable space including 2 floors for retail and 6 levels of underground parking with 314 vehicle spaces.
Monday, 27 February 2012
Amid much controversy bike lanes were installed on the Burrard Street Bridge in 2010 on a trial basis.
One of the intentions of the bike lanes was to encourage cycling and reduce cyclist/pedestrian conflicts and accidents. While the bike lanes have been a huge hit with cyclists and pedestrians, some drivers complain of gridlock on the bridge as there is now one less lane for driving.
Friday, 24 February 2012
Just over 100 years old the Stadacona Apartments are located just off of Georgia on Bute Street. Reflected through the glass building across the street, this building was built in 1910 by W. Orson Banfield. This area of the city has seen a tremendous amount of growth over the last 15 years and it will be interesting to see how many of the new buildings that have gone up will still be around in 100 years.
Wednesday, 22 February 2012
Monday, 20 February 2012
The location of Fred Herzog's latest photo exhibition looks like it came out of one his pictures. Viewing at 525 Great Northern Way, Equinox Project Space is squeezed between Great Northern Way Campus, railway tracks and Industrial Ave.
The exhibition is a stunning display of one of Vancouver's leading photographers. Herzog arrived in Vancouver in 1952 and has been photographing street life ever since. The exhibition runs until March 17th.
Wednesday, 15 February 2012
Kits Beach: Greer's Beach
Known as the "happening beach" and a haven for sun worshippers and yoga enthusiasts, Kitsilano beach seems oddly peaceful on this winter day. Listed as one of North America's top 10 sexiest beaches by Forbes Traveler it was originally named Greer's beach after the colorful character Sam Greer, one of the first non native settlers who in the late 1800's built his home on the site that later became the concession stand.
At that time, Greer's beach was so far out of town that people would escape there for weekend camping. Greer's daughter Jessie tells of her father shooting wolves and cougars from the back door of their home. Unfortunately for Greer, Canadian Pacific Railway claimed that the 65 hectares Greer had claimed for his homestead to be Crown land which had been ceded to them. Greer had no interest in leaving the land and tried to sabotage CPR's work by taking down telegraph lines as fast as workers could install them. Finally a sheriff was called in to deal with Greer and his rebel ways. Greer, still not ready to leave the land he claimed was his, took aim at the sheriff, injuring him. He was sent to prison for this act, and his home torn down. He lived well into his 80's and died in 1925.
Tuesday, 14 February 2012
Sunday, 12 February 2012
Even though Vancouver has a graffiti bylaw that was enacted in 2003, street art appears to be everywhere. One of the clauses states that there is a minimum $500 fine for anyone caught writing graffiti. I'm not sure anyone is paying attention to this bylaw as creative forces are still at work in local neighborhoods.
Friday, 10 February 2012
Wednesday, 8 February 2012
Monday, 6 February 2012
Saturday, 4 February 2012
Back in 1862 the area now known as the West End was snapped up by three Englishmen, John Morton, Samuel Brighouse, and William Hailstone for the ghastly sum of $550.75. In those days the West End was nothing but trees, a forested area known as lot number 185 - 540 acres of rainforest. These three men, known as the Three Greenhorns because people believed they were naive and paid too much for the land, had great visions for the future. In their dreams they envisioned mining for porcelain clays in Coal Harbour and starting a brick works business. Unfortunately the clay was not of the greatest quality used for making bricks and the distance to transport what could be produced to New Westminster, a mere 20 km away seen as too far. In order to make money, some of the land by then referred to as the Brickmaker's Claim was divided into lots and sold to different investors. Of course the rest is history, as the West End now holds some of the most expensive real estate in the country.
Thursday, 2 February 2012
Urban legend has it that the architect of the Dominion Building, John Helyer, died at the opening party of this heritage building. Built in 1909, this 14-storey building was the first steel framed high rise to be built in Vancouver. It was also the tallest. It is located at the corner of Cambie and Hastings, bordering on Downtown Eastside, Gastown and Chinatown.
Ever since that opening night party over 100 years ago, rumor has it that John Helyer's ghost can be seen on the staircase between the seventh and eighth floors. Even creepier is that many have reported hearing his footsteps in the stairway. It has never been clear how he came to tumble down the stairs. Did he fall, did he jump or was he pushed. Only the ghosts of the Dominion Building really know.