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Some long gone greats: historical Victoria photos


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#561 Cassidy

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Posted 07 February 2019 - 11:19 PM

That was quite an improvement huh?

 

Centennial Square has been somewhat of a perceived disaster from its very inception.

It probably would have been best to leave it as it was. It would probably be a veritable warren of cool little boutiques and hip restaurants today ... instead of the big, dead blank hole in the middle of town it's turned out to be.

 

When Centennial Square was first built, it was the hippies that got all the bad press. They even put hard plaster spackle on the smooth concrete of the fountain surround ... this to prevent the hippies from sitting on it and "hanging around".

Go have a sit on it today, it's just as uncomfortable now as when they first came up with the idea. You won't last more than 30 seconds trying to sit there.

 

Today it's street kids, drug dealers, and general miscreants.

The more things change ....... (or do they?)

 


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#562 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 08 February 2019 - 05:30 AM

the worst thing is it’s a big disaster and it HAS security, that do noting all day. under orders to do nothing but “observe”. one might even suggest all they are there for is to protect city workers are their cars in the parkade. the other parkades still have problems but centennial where city workers park is well patrolled.

Edited by Victoria Watcher, 08 February 2019 - 05:33 AM.


#563 aastra

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Posted 18 February 2019 - 12:31 PM

I mentioned this building in an earlier post but I'm officially confused about it. Have we ever talked about this one before?

 

M05391_141.jpg

pic from https://archives.vic...vernment-street

 

**********

 

Government_Johnson-GoogleStreetview.jpg

 

**********

 

Government_Johnson.jpg

pic from https://archives.vic...rnment-street-2



#564 G-Man

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 06:53 AM

Yeah making the windows smaller and removing the arches is a weird "improvement"...
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#565 aastra

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 09:32 AM

It seems strange to me because the post-modernization pic still has a fair bit of the original flavour. It's as if they wanted to do a full modernization and then chickened out or something. Also, the cornice was removed and then added back at some point, but other details that had survived the original modernization ended up disappearing later anyway? It's odd.

 

I'd love to see a decent effort to restore this one.



#566 aastra

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Posted 22 February 2019 - 05:59 PM

Methinks the brewery building on Government would have been a goldmine re: conversion to lofts:

https://archives.vic...y-lager-brewery

 

M01374_141.jpg


Edited by aastra, 08 May 2019 - 02:47 PM.

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#567 Rob Randall

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Posted 22 February 2019 - 07:00 PM

Victoria's biggest architectural loss IMO. This was a gem Rock Bay couldn't afford to lose.

 

The Phoenix brewery building was given an award for heritage restoration by the Hallmark Society. Of course it was demolished shortly afterward. I'm certain that if had been allowed to sit abandoned for a decade instead of being destroyed another brewery would have taken over. I'm pretty sure there was only a couple of years that elapsed between Labatt leaving town and the beginning of the local craft beer era (Spinnaker's, VIB). 

 

I would have rather seen it continue use as a brewery than residential although I agree they would have made stunning condo lofts.


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"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

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#568 Jackerbie

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Posted 28 February 2019 - 01:47 PM

Victoria's biggest architectural loss IMO. This was a gem Rock Bay couldn't afford to lose.

 

The Phoenix brewery building was given an award for heritage restoration by the Hallmark Society. Of course it was demolished shortly afterward. I'm certain that if had been allowed to sit abandoned for a decade instead of being destroyed another brewery would have taken over. I'm pretty sure there was only a couple of years that elapsed between Labatt leaving town and the beginning of the local craft beer era (Spinnaker's, VIB).

 

I would have rather seen it continue use as a brewery than residential although I agree they would have made stunning condo lofts.

 

That's exactly why it was demolished. Labatt didn't want competition stepping into the market.


Edited by Jackerbie, 28 February 2019 - 01:48 PM.


#569 Rob Randall

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Posted 28 February 2019 - 03:12 PM

The very first attempt at a microbrewery happened the same year the historic Silver Spring Brewery building was demolished (1982). It's sickening to think that the reason for the demolition was a scorched-earth policy by a retreating owner. I'm not sure that was the true reason but the timing is suspect.


"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

-Tom Hawthorne, Toronto Globe and Mail


#570 Dinya

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Posted 29 March 2019 - 12:06 PM

Does anybody remember what was in this mall?  (Now part of the St. Andrew's Square building)

 

https://archives.vic...722-view-street

 

I was remembering going to the old Standard Furniture building in the 700 block of Yates with my mother.  I seem to recall it being a very old building and quite rickety.

 

And then I remembered the parking lot out back and this collection of stores on the West side.  I think one may have been a candy store or a bakery?

 

It's hard to tell what any of the signs say in this photograph.



#571 aastra

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Posted 29 March 2019 - 12:30 PM

Daily Colonist

November 21, 1963

 

They're for the new look
Yates Street Blockbusters Working Closely With the City

 

 

...the biggest project undertaken by the Yates Street merchants is a mall to the rear of the stores on the south side of the street.

 

"The eventual plan is to have most stores having a rear door opening out to this pedestrian mall..."

 

"Our Mid-Town Mall recently opened its first stage, a four-shop block bordering on the Standard Furniture parking lot."



#572 Cassidy

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Posted 29 March 2019 - 01:18 PM

Did that little bank of shops survive right up until the St. Andrews building was built?

 

You'd think a person would remember that sign ...but I only remember Standard Furnitures loading bay and parking lot back there.



#573 Nparker

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Posted 29 March 2019 - 01:24 PM

Did that little bank of shops survive right up until the St. Andrews building was built?..

Perhaps a victim (in one form or another) of the Standard Furniture fire?


Edited by Nparker, 29 March 2019 - 01:24 PM.


#574 G-Man

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Posted 29 March 2019 - 06:01 PM

It definitely wasn't there before the St Andrews Square was built.

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#575 aastra

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 02:48 PM

I feel like it was still there even after the fire, during that period when the Standard Furniture site was a gaping hole right through to Yates.

 

Here's a good pic showing the former finery of Douglas Street:

 

g-03699_141.jpg

 

pic from BC Archives...


Edited by aastra, 15 April 2019 - 02:48 PM.

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#576 Nparker

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 03:47 PM

Douglas Street once had pride in itself. What happened?



#577 aastra

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Posted 08 May 2019 - 01:37 PM

Just repeating this from another thread:

 

From the memory hole re: 615-627 Yates...

 

 

"Fire traced to barber shop"
Daily Colonist
July 12, 1980

Origin of a $1.5 million, three-alarm fire Friday morning in downtown Victoria was placed at the rear washroom of a barber shop.

The blaze, in the 600-block Yates, required 35 firemen and equipment from Oak Bay as well as Victoria...

...a ball-and-chain wrecking unit was called in later Friday because of concern over the soundness of the walls.

...the decision was made to knock down the wall. ("Wreckers follow the fire")

...curious onlookers impeded traffic along Yates and View Streets. Police received two (!) complaints about the bottleneck.

 

Pic below shows the old building in (somewhat) better days:

 

M05566_141.jpg

 

pic from https://archives.vic...27-yates-street

 

*****

 

Eventually replaced by:

 

post-26-0-47020500-1557251404.jpg


Edited by aastra, 08 May 2019 - 01:37 PM.

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#578 Nparker

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Posted 08 May 2019 - 01:41 PM

The massing of the replacement structure is reminiscent of the original, but the old building sure was a lot prettier with a much better urban vibe.



#579 Rob Randall

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Posted 08 May 2019 - 02:08 PM

But why? Is it the dark colour of the brick that puts us off? The inset storefronts? The lack of detail? The roofline on the new building is more articulated, in theory it should be more attractive.

 

Maybe Modernism was a bust and humans actually crave extraneous ornamentation.


"[Randall's] aesthetic poll was more accurate than his political acumen"

-Tom Hawthorne, Toronto Globe and Mail


#580 Nparker

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Posted 08 May 2019 - 02:12 PM

Aside from the colour of the brick, it's the smaller windows on the upper floor that are less appealing than the original. There's also something about the articulation of the retail spaces on the ground floor that just doesn't work for me in the newer building.



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