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Showing posts from January, 2012

Re:Generation: a Missed Opportunity?

Last Wednesday, the City of Vancouver, Simon Fraser University, BC Transit Museum partnered together to host an event called 'Regeneration: How We Move Out City' that they billed as "an intergenerational dialogue sharing stories of active transportation for Vancouver's Greenest City goals."

I was particularly eager to talk about cross-generational conflict and the differences that we're seeing in the choices they we are making versus those that our parents or their parents made. I was hoping to learn from people with first hand experience the shifts in transportation modes in Vancouver over time. What I got was not quite that.

Participants were split up into groups (which was nice so get people mixing) and the night was started with a series of 'stories' or presentations.

 Angus McIntyre, who retired in 2010 after being a bus driver in Vancouver since 1969, presented the room with stories of how transit had changed over his tenure. Here's a short…

720 Robson: Past, Present, Future?

Hey all,

Started a blog up with my fellow Urbsters at SFU's Urban Studies program. Here's a quick post I did today on the development at 720 Robson Street.

BIG things happening in Vancouver?

BIG Architects coming to town? Look at the bold and striking rendering of a possible development around the North End of the Granville Bridge (as seen on BLAH City). The tower on the right is definitely the most 'daring' tower design we've had in Vancouver in a while. Looking forward to seeing more details soon.

Vancouver Life May 1966

JMV over at Illustrated Vancouver was so gracious enough to give me a copy of Vancouver Life from 1966 that he owned. Normally, I'd be ecstatic just to be able to read anything like this (history nerd!) but this particular issue has the Great Vancouver Paint-In in it! Granted, it's not a very long piece but it has a gorgeous cover. Many, many, many thanks to Jason! 

Ugly Buildings

Atlantic Cities has an interesting (and short) article on the case for saving ugly buildings and it made me wonder about all the buildings that are in Vancouver that may have already fallen out of vogue or that soon will:
Buildings aren't preserved based on relative maintenance costs or aesthetics but on the merits of originality and historic interest. Whether it be a pre-historic pueblo, Colonial-era slave quarters, World War II Quonset hut, or a Brutalist tower is irrelevant, as long as it fits the designation of being unique and historically relevant. Many iconic, retro-futurist Googie structures have been lost because the streamlined style was representative of lowbrow, vulgar highway culture. In a similar vein, various Classic Revival and Art Nouveau movie theaters were demolished in the years when the ornate flourish of their decaying interiors was simply dismissed as antiquated, gaudy decadence in the post-Depression age. Indeed, this is an important issue for Vancouver as w…

Vancouver Paint-In v2.0?

I've been working on some stuff regarding the possible Paint-In event I want to help organize. Since the Art Gallery has removed the fencing (which is great!), not much to paint/protest right now, is there? I figured we could pull it off in spring on the same day (or there-abouts) the original Paint-In happened?
I was thinking there could be public voting and maybe a gallery collaboration.
What do you think? See my dedicated page and feel free to ask questions, provide comments, etc. 
Here's a mock up of some promo material I made:

Are Vancouver Streets Boring?

I replied to a twitter comment the other day about the importance of independent retailers on our city streets. I implied that Vancouver suffers from boring streets downtown because new development tends to price out independent retailers:
I pointed out to three specific chains: Flight Centre, Cash2Go (but for this post, pretend I said Money Mart, and Starbucks. It got me thinking and I decided to see where they were in the downtown peninsula. Here are the results:
Convenient or over-kill/boring? Obviously, there is a demand for these locations since they're in business but is there a reason for you to visit Robson Street over Metrotown or any other mall in the region?

Langley: The Place to Be?

This past weekend I went back to my beloved hometown of Langley to visit my Grandparents (one of the few reasons I actually opt to go back). If it wasn't for them and my other family and friends, I would honestly never go. Ever. I continually wonder what era Langley is in and who it is they want to attract to their city.
However, apparently, it's an attractive place for people to buy a home in. I came across this 'article' in the Vancouver Sun a little while ago (I use the term article very loosely because it reads more like an advertisement for a development). 
In it, a professional woman who had been living in Gastown in a studio (400 sq. ft.) for the past 10 years and decided that it was no longer the lifestyle she wanted. She apparently "needed a landing pad for adulthood" so she decided to move to Langley, to a project at 210A Street and 56th Avenue. Her new home is a one bedroom (590 sq. ft.) However, her job was still in Vancouver. She made the trade of…