Elsewhere · History · Pacific Northwest

Squirrels Were Once Desired…

Squirrels are everywhere in the city and it seems they have been with us forever. While it’s hard to believe now, squirrels were not a common sight in early 19th Century cities, in fact they were considered somewhat exotic and desirable. My curiosity was peaked when I found references to the mayor of New York… Continue reading Squirrels Were Once Desired…

Chinatown · History · urban design · Vancouver

H-frame Power Poles: A cultural asset for Chinatown?

Yes of course, maybe… H-frame power poles have graced most downtown Vancouver lanes for over 80 years but with modernization of the electrical system BC Hydro has been busy putting the power lines underground and the H-frames have largely disappeared from the downtown core. A few lanes in the Downtown Eastside, Gastown and Chinatown still retain… Continue reading H-frame Power Poles: A cultural asset for Chinatown?

History · stanley park · Transportation · Vancouver

There be Dragons…

In the stuff that lies around on my desk, I have a photo of the figurehead of the Empress of Japan taken in 1928 just after it was installed in Stanley Park. As the ship was being broken up near the Second Narrows bridge on the North Shore, Vancouver Province publisher Frank J. Burd had… Continue reading There be Dragons…

BC Mills · History · Pacific Northwest · Vancouver

On the Junk Pile…

In researching the construction chronology of the Hastings Mill Store, both original and post move, I’ve been reading numerous newspaper articles, all celebratory, about the saving of the building and its move by barge from Burrard Inlet to its current site at the foot of Alma Street. Once installed on its new foundation the building… Continue reading On the Junk Pile…

BC Mills · History · urban design

BC Mills “Ready Made” Houses and Fernie

Top left: MMM, Top Right: OOO, Bottom Left: MM, Bottom Right: Concrete hybrid Fernie, BC has had its share of bad luck in the past. The town was destroyed in 1908 in a devastating fire that levelled the town except for 37 houses and three other buildings. Rebuilding got underway quickly. The brickworks ramped up production… Continue reading BC Mills “Ready Made” Houses and Fernie