Chinatown · History · urban design · Vancouver

Around and Around We Go…

Sometimes the third time isn’t lucky. The Beedie Group has revamped their proposed tower at 105 Keefer yet again. But they really haven’t learned much in the intervening months since pulling their previous design. If you are going to build on the edge of a nationally significant community, it pays to understand the place and… Continue reading Around and Around We Go…

Chinatown · History · In The Background · Vancouver

In the Background, Under the Arch

In 1912, Vancouver welcomed the Duke and Duchess of Connaught with a series of ceremonial arches across streets on the processional route the couple would take on their tour of the city. Chinatown welcomed the visitors with this arch over Pender Street at Carrall. What’s of interest is not the arch itself but what can… Continue reading In the Background, Under the Arch

Chinatown · History · urban design · Vancouver

Good Intent & Design Fail in Chinatown

Inserting new structures into older urban environments can be tricky. The rhythm of the street and its storefronts, sidewalk width, building height etc. all play a role in the success of any new building. But then, despite the best of intentions from the planners it fails at a certain level. The Keefer Block at the corner… Continue reading Good Intent & Design Fail in Chinatown

Chinatown · History · Vancouver

An Unexpected Find

This rather sad looking building on Franklin Street near Woodland Drive was once something quite wonderful and unexpected. However, looking at it in this Google Street view, it is clear that whatever renovations have taken place over the years haven’t been very successful and that there’s something missing. It’s not well known but Franklin Street… Continue reading An Unexpected Find

Awards · Chinatown · History · Vancouver

Jean Barman, Chinese Food & Prizes! What an Evening…

April 11th. 6:00pm Fraser Court Restaurant, 3489 Fraser St. It’s that time of the year again for the Chinese Canadian Historical Society of BC’s Annual Banquet! The 10th Anniversary edition is honouring historian, and founding CCHSBC director, Jean Barman for her contributions to Chinese Canadian history. She’ll be feted by comedy troupe Assaulted Fish, Jan… Continue reading Jean Barman, Chinese Food & Prizes! What an Evening…

Chinatown · History · urban design · Vancouver

Shanghai Alley on a Summer Afternoon

Here’s a screen grab from the fabulous 1956 CBC film Summer Afternoon which follows two boys around Chinatown. There are many great images of a long gone landscape. In a brief segment the two are seen climbing over the gates to Canton Alley and then wander down Shanghai Alley. There are very few good images… Continue reading Shanghai Alley on a Summer Afternoon

Chinatown · Elsewhere · urban design

Let There Be Light…

There are so many examples of cities using light in interesting ways. Imagine if Chinatown in Vancouver hosted a lighting festival… This is from Frame Magazine. It may not be as drastic as in some parts of the world, but the Netherlands gets dark pretty darn early during winter. To break the blackness, Amsterdam Light Festivalilluminates… Continue reading Let There Be Light…