I can think of at least four shortcuts I used to be able to take through downtown Victoria parking lots that are now blocked by fences, and soon to be blocked permanently by expensive developments...
Nobody ever complained when buildings were torn down to create the parking lots, but people complain whenever the parking lots are re-replaced with buildings. I've noted it so many times... Victorians have no aversion whatsoever to change, as long as it's the right kind of change. Positive/additive change is bad, whereas negative/subtractive change is good. Demolishing a building to create a void = good change. Filling in the void = bad change.
After the Standard Furniture fire there was a convenient void in the middle of that block for a brief time. Remember that? Should we be upset because we can't ride our bikes through there anymore? For decades before the fire you never could ride your bikes through there. Buildings were in the way.
Nobody ever used the parking lot beside the Capitol theatre as a shortcut back in the day because there was no parking lot beside the Capitol theatre back in the day. There were buildings there.
Nobody ever used the Pandora parking lot as a shortcut back in the day because there was no Pandora parking lot back in the day. There were buildings there.
How about James Bay? The most celebrated parking lots in James Bay all had houses and buildings or at least something on them before they were turned into parking lots. I mean, come on.
These parking lots and other voids that we celebrate are not historic/heritage voids. Almost all of them are very recent, and in no way shape or form are such voids integral to Victoria's character. In most cases they significantly detract from Victoria's character.
If your favourite shortcut gets eliminated then just tell yourself that you had a good run while it lasted.