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[Langford] Strathmore condo | 4-storeys | Built


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#1 aastra

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 04:57 PM

How come nobody has ever mentioned this place?

http://www.thestrathmore.ca/

A rare opportunity to enjoy a luxury condominium lifestyle in Vancouver Island's most vibrant neighbourhood. The Strathmore, a stunning residence located in the heart of Langford, BC; offering a prime close-to-everthing setting, yet only minutes from all that Vancouver Island's natural environment has to offer - and only a short drive to Downtown Victoria as well.

The gorgeous Victorian/Arts & Crafts heritage style exterior, with turret tower, water feature, stone and stucco finish and huge windows, is but an introduction to what you'll find inside.



#2 aastra

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 05:30 PM

I really don't understand why Langford has embraced this sort of mock-Victorian architecture. They had a great opportunity as a young community on Canada's west coast to do something unique with their architectural design and really define themselves. If my flux capacitor was working, I'd go back twenty years and strongly urge Langfordian officialdom to embrace westcoast contemporary architecture for any and every significant new building. Forget river rocks and turrets and faux details that have no relevance out there. Glu-lam and lots of glass was the way to go. It's not too late.

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#3 gumgum

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 05:36 PM

OMG, there are so many things wrong with that building, I could go on and on.

#4 Nparker

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 05:49 PM

The errors begin with the following phrase:

Vancouver Island's most vibrant neighbourhood.

Langford may be many things, but I'd never call it vibrant!

#5 UrbanRail

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 06:14 PM

The errors begin with the following phrase:

Langford may be many things, but I'd never call it vibrant!


sure its vibrant, its automobile vibrant :)

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#6 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 07:53 PM

Yeah, it's so easy to trash Langford, isn't it?

Come on, get real. Young families are moving to Langford -- fresh blood, young people, children. Not old folks and tourists.

People with ambitions. People with careers. People starting businesses. Those sort of people.

Newsflash: Langford gets more of them than Victoria. It would be great if we get a few more here, but plenty of young people move to Langford.

So they have shitty-looking stupid faux buildings.

As if we didn't here, except ours aren't brand new.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#7 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 07:54 PM

Aside from that, I agree that this building looks freakish.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#8 Nparker

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:10 PM

Langford is ruled by the car. It's the antithesis of a truly vibrant community. All those "young" people are likely soccer moms (and dads) driving their kids from one distant event to another. Stopping at the mall to go to some chain store. No one walks anywhere. Big box stores and faux river rock do not equate to a sense of community to me. Walkability, quaint local shops and ammenties do. Maybe in 30 years Langford will grow into a real community, but for now it is strictly suburban.

#9 jklymak

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:14 PM

What I don't understand is where in the creative process did this design came from? Did it originate with the architect? The developer? The amalgamated desires of some focus group? Who sits down and says "a turret and water feature will really sell"?

I kind of understand sentiment of the echoing of the Empress in Songhees etc, even if I dislike the final result. But I'm really confused how something like this proposal gets conceived.

#10 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:17 PM

^^ But they are people, and they're young! To say that they're somehow not "vibrant" or 100% valuable is like dissing people because they happen to live in commie blocks downtown, vs. in stylish new or stylish green condos downtown.

I mean, how long did it take Victoria (and Vancouver) to get "away" from the car? So suddenly d/t Victoria gets to be vibrant and everyone else is just ...what?, wrong?

And btw, if there aren't any "soccer moms" (such a cliche, anyway), who do you think is going to pay into your pension fund 20 years from now?

I understand where you guys are coming from, but I'm worried that you're privileging form over function here. Without people, no function.

(simulposting w/ jklymak -- good questions.)
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#11 Nparker

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:28 PM

I am not dissing soccer moms, or young families or even that damned river rock per se. However, today, in 2008, Langford is a community that exists strictly because of, and for, the automobile. This post-war suburban conceit built around the car, is what has lead North America to be dependent on foreign oil - creating much of the socialogical and political instability in the world today. People MUST begin to think and live differently. And this difference is going to mean returning to the city cores, not constantly sprawling ever further out. The "new urbanism" is not an architectural style it is a whole new (in fact old) way of living. I hope in time this becomes evident to more and more people.

#12 gumgum

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:35 PM

Yeah, it's so easy to trash Langford, isn't it?

Come on, get real. Young families are moving to Langford -- fresh blood, young people, children. Not old folks and tourists.

People with ambitions. People with careers. People starting businesses. Those sort of people.

Newsflash: Langford gets more of them than Victoria. It would be great if we get a few more here, but plenty of young people move to Langford.

So they have shitty-looking stupid faux buildings.

As if we didn't here, except ours aren't brand new.

We criticize Victoria everyday. All-of-a-sudden we're not allowed to criticize Langford? Why? Because they're cheaper? The underdog? Maybe we don't speak too much of the benefits of Langford, such as affordability. Fair enough. But sorry, that does not nullify my tastes for decent design. That doesn't excuse the city for its backwards car oriented planning, or bullshit faux garbage they are spewing.
Do you imply attacking those of whom plan a city is the same as attacking its citizens?

The fact is, had Langford been designed more efficiently, with more density, it could have been even more affordable.

Back to this nightmare of a condo complex.. had this been conceived of in this day and age in Victoria, it wouldn't have made it through the front door. I hold the same standards in Langford.

#13 gumgum

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 08:38 PM

... but I'm worried that you're privileging form over function here. Without people, no function.

You think Langford is functional?

#14 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 09:05 PM

I'm objecting to the "vibe" that says we're superior because we don't live in Langford.

And to the idea that it's cool to bash Langford.

Today, we bash it for its cars and its "suburban" flavor. Yesterday we bashed it for its Dog-Patch-ishness. I call BS.

By the way, did you all see the story in The Economist, An Age of Transformation? Don't be so sure that Langford-style "suburbs" (which, like Colwood, are actually new city centres in the making) are the embodiment of the kind of retardataire tendencies you ascribe to them. I'm much more worried about Victoria than I am about Langford, I'll tell you that for nothing.

From the article:

America's suburbs are coming to resemble its city centres. That is both good news and bad

(...)
In 1960 fewer Americans lived in suburbs than in central cities or the countryside. Ten years later the suburbs had overhauled both; by 2000 they contained more people than the cities and countryside put together. Despite more than a decade of urban boosterism, beginning with sitcoms like “Friends” and “Sex and the City” and continuing with expensive efforts to spruce up downtown districts, the drift to the cul-de-sacs continues. Between 1990 and 2006 the city of Chicago added 50,000 residents, reversing a long decline. Not bad—but in the same period the sprawling metropolis outside the city proper grew by well over a million.

As they swell, the suburbs are changing. Perhaps none ever quite resembled the colourless domestic enclaves popularised by 1970s television programmes such as “The Brady Bunch”; now, they look nothing at all like them. America's suburbs are ethnically and demographically mixed—sometimes more so than its cities. Many are less dormitories than economic powerhouses. (...)

(...)

Why are gays and ethnic minorities moving to suburbia? The obvious answer is that they can. No suburban developer would dare bar blacks or any other group from buying houses, as William Levitt did until 1960. It has taken longer to overcome local prejudices—and the fear that behind twitching net curtains live intolerant neighbours rather than merely curious ones. Yet such anxieties are now fading. The Rev Willie James, who launched a lawsuit in 1959 that led to the desegregation of Willingboro, says overt racism is no more, and the covert kind is so covert as to be almost undetectable.

To the extent that ethnic-minority groups have needs distinct from those of whites (which they do less and less) they can increasingly meet them outside city centres. Los Angeles' best dim sum is to be found in the largely Chinese suburb of Monterey Park. Its best Indian restaurants are in Artesia, another suburb. Gays can go online to socialise, points out Mr Gates—or they can go to ordinary bars and clubs, where same-sex couples raise fewer eyebrows than they used to. Many young gays hardly see the point of pricey enclaves like Chelsea in New York or the Castro in San Francisco.

Despite recent falls, property prices in cities like Los Angeles, New York, Miami and Washington have risen far more than the national average since the mid-1990s. Many Americans find it worthwhile to move out and commute to jobs in the city. And they may not have to commute at all. The most important reason people are moving to the suburbs is economic: that is where the jobs are. (More...)

As for the snide question, "You think Langford is functional?" -- just what is that supposed to mean? Are you suggesting it's dysfunctional? Jeebus, look in the mirror (Victoria) for that.

There's plenty of fixing to do all around.
When you buy a game, you buy the rules. Play happens in the space between the rules.

#15 Nparker

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 10:24 PM

I still say that as fuel prices continue to rise, and unless an AWFUL lot of large corporations (not so much in Victoria of course) flee their corporate headquarters in large urban city centres, the era of the sprawling car-centred suburb is going to come to an end. Just as people fled the cities for their "piece of the rock" in the suburbs after the Second World War, I predict a time when the opposite trend becomes apparent is not so far off.

#16 Caramia

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 10:46 PM

Well one thing about development in Langford is that it is creating a new city centre. I forsee the day when Langford is at the heart of a new city quite distinct from Victoria. And the centre that is starting now with taller buildings gets fully developed into a core many time denser than Victoria will ever have.

Too bad about the 2 dimensional facades and all the river rock.

#17 Nparker

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 11:27 PM

I forsee the day when Langford is at the heart of a new city quite distinct from Victoria.


If you live to be 200 years old you may be right. However I do not see that Langford will become more densely populated than Victoria, unless Victoria not only stops growing, but in fact regresses from its current density.

Please give me one example of a suburb of a large urban centre that is more densely populated than the city it surrounds. By that I mean more persons living in a square km - not just a larger population, since clearly there are "suburbs" with larger populations than their "core" cities. Saanich is one such example in the Capital Region, but it is NOT more densely populated than Victoria.

#18 gumgum

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Posted 07 June 2008 - 07:23 AM

What my concern focuses on is the fact that I see a the lifespan of these buildings in Langford as too short. The way suburbs are designed, in order to improve them, densify them, entire buildings, neighbourhoods will have to be ripped down and replaced. There's a sense of impermanence as these neighbourhoods go up. At least high percentage of buildings in Victoria are versatile enough to potentially last for hundreds of years. Do you see Langford as we know it now standing the test of time? It's wasteful.

Today, we bash it for its cars and its "suburban" flavor. Yesterday we bashed it for its Dog-Patch-ishness. I call BS.

Personally, I have never known Langford as the latter. I plead innocence.
BTW, I'm sure most of Langford's citizens are fully aware of its pitfalls and disadvantages. I don't know if you need to "defend" them. Maybe I'm wrong.

#19 gumgum

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Posted 07 June 2008 - 07:36 AM

I do, however, declare war on Langford council and city planners for their complete and utter lack of vision and arrogance.
This Spencer Rd interchange is a prime example. This "f#&k you, naysayers, we're building it and we don't care" pisses me off, and it scares me. History will prove it was a mistake. History will prove that they got into such trouble by their public for good reason.

#20 LJ

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Posted 07 June 2008 - 12:40 PM

I do, however, declare war on Langford council and city planners for their complete and utter lack of vision and arrogance.
This Spencer Rd interchange is a prime example. This "f#&k you, naysayers, we're building it and we don't care" pisses me off, and it scares me. History will prove it was a mistake. History will prove that they got into such trouble by their public for good reason.


They are building it for very good reasons, and it has been planned for years. It will connect north and south Langford together and allow residents from the north side to get to all the amenities on the south side much easier and quicker. The water park, slides, arenas,golfcente,playing fields are all going in one area and are going to attract hundreds of kids/families daily. The new light industrial park on Westshore parkway is providing many jobs and opportunities for people to live and work in the same area. The free tram service will be expanded to provide service to the area, it was just expanded to provide free transportation throughout Langford/Colwood and Thetis lake.

The naysayers are in a very small minority (and most don't live in the community, unless you consider squatting in a tree living), and they naysay about everything. The majority of residents are very much behind this project and all the rest that are planned. Not only are they not in trouble with "their public" they are very highly regarded. If you don't think so - watch the municipal elections.
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