Some Rose/Blanshard stuff from the archives.
August 15, 1962
Curtis Fails to Stop Blanshard Extension
Ald. Austin Curtis yesterday tried unsuccessfully to stop all work on a section of the Blanshard Street extension project pending a rehash by city council of the entire problem of a second major access route into Victoria.
He was ruled out of order by Acting May Arthur Dowell after proposing a resolution calling for an immediate work stoppage on the project during yesterday's special city council meeting.
"...two weeks ago I requested a special meeting to discuss the Blanshard Street question. Ordinarily such a meeting would have been held immediately."
"Nobody seems to know anything about the work according to the newspapers, and it appears to have come as a surprise to the members of council as well,"
April 5, 1963
The committee recommended purchase of four lots and a duplex at Rose and Topaz... to permit widening of Rose Street to carry traffic from the new Mayfair shopping centre.
Mayor Wilson said the provincial government hasn't yet made its decision on the location of the new highway entrance to Victoria and would not do so until the metro traffic study is completed in about a year.
He said that until this is agreed upon Victoria cannot embark on the costly Blanshard Street extension scheme.
June 19, 1963
Shopping Centre Link Urged
City hall traffic officials have come up with a plan to move traffic downtown from the Mayfair shopping centre, which opens this fall.
Plan is to extend Rose Street from Bay to Blanshard and Queens...
Rose Street already is under reconstruction between Topaz and Bay after being extended northward to Tolmie last year.
June 28, 1963
Worse Mess Feared
Victoria is heading for "a worse traffic mess" than now exists on Government Street unless it immediately punches through Rose Street extension to link up with Blanshard, city council was warned...
Council decided... to refer the immediate road extension problem to finance committee for further study of every possible means of financing what it termed an "emergency" project.
"The only solution to growing congestion downtown," said Ald. Mooney, "lies in creation of another main traffic artery leading into the heart of the city."
"If we don't do something now on Rose Street south of Bay we're going to find ourselves in a worse mess than Government Street."
...the opening of the $6,000,000 Mayfair shopping centre this fall will prove disastrous to downtown merchants unless "we make it easier for people to get in an out of the centre of the city."
Failure to create the new access route... would discourage some people from going downtown to shop and despite all efforts it would take years to woo them back.
July 17, 1963
Another Bottleneck Predicted in Area of Tolmie, Cloverdale
The Douglas Street bottleneck of snarled cars, dented fenders and injured motorists will soon shift northwards from Fountain Circle to the Tolmie-Cloverdale area, Saanich officials predicted...
Reeve Stanley Murphy... has been trying to see Highways Minister Gaglardi for the past two months about the mushrooming traffic problems...
He feels that Saanich will be forced into building a bunch of roads to service Victoria's Mayfair shopping centre when the municipality's interest lies in its own Town and Country shopping centre.
Unless the provincial highways department helps in the construction of another north-south arterial route into the city, Saanich taxpayers are going to have to pay for roads which will be used by people from such outlying areas as Langford, Colwood, View Royal and Central Saanich...
...the highways department's plan for a two-way left turn lane in the centre of Douglas Street is "sheer suicide" and that the only answer to Victoria's approach and exit problem will be completion of the proposed Blanshard Street extension and use of one-way traffic then on Blanshard and Douglas.
Saanich's Tolmie-Cloverdale bottleneck... will be created when Victoria opens the Rose Street extension leading to the east side of the Mayfair shopping centre.
Northbound traffic from the city using the new Rose Street route will relieve pressure at the Fountain Circle and pile it up at Tolmie, said Saanich municipal engineer Neville Life.
He said it will be difficult to recommend any action to relieve the impending bottleneck until it is learned whether the highways department intends to make another north-south route into the city, possibly by linking Vernon Avenue, Seymour, and Maple to the end of Rose Street.
Saanich and the city should work together on the problem...
"Unfortunately, we are going to have traffic from the police-fire hall on in like we've never seen before," said Coun. Curtis.
"Mayfair is deserving of easy access from all areas and yet we have the old business of an artificial boundary (Tolmie Avenue -- the municipal boundary) in the way..."
"...it does seem unfortunate that Saanich has to go to work to improve roads leading to facilities that are not in the municipality. The sooner we get rid of the boundary, the better for all of us."
...Reeve Murphy thought that the opening of Rose Street will only mean headaches and ultimately a big outlay of Saanich money for the Victoria shopping centre.
July 19, 1963
Expropriation Asked For Road Extension
City finance committee recommended a start in expropriation proceedings to obtain a 25-foot strip of property at the rear of Holyrood House for extension of Rose Street.
...the property would have to be in city hands by mid-August if the two-month job was to be completed in time for the declared Oct. 16 opening of the new Mayfair shopping centre, which Rose Street will serve.
Mayor Wilson said the move would ease a traffic bottleneck...
October 2, 1963
Rose May Wear Ribbons
A ribbon-cutting ceremony and a cavalcade of cars are being considered for the official opening next week of the new Rose Street extension route into the downtown area.
The section between Bay and Blanshard at Queens has just been blacktopped...
Traffic lights will be installed at Bay and Rose and Hillside and Rose in the next few days.
The arterial road link was built... to ensure that traffic generated by the Mayfair shopping centre, which opens its doors in two weeks, can easily get downtown.
Traffic chairman Ald. Mooney said he is convinced the "only way to keep Victoria alive and active is to permit people to travel to and from the downtown area with the minimum of difficulty."
Ease of access to the wide variety of stores in the city centre will ensure the health of the high-tax area, he said.
Mayor Wilson said the new intersection now under construction to replace the roundabout at Fountain Circle will bring about a major improvement in traffic flow.
The new intersection, originally also scheduled to be in operation by the time of the shopping centre opening, now is delayed two weeks...
The mayor said the new two-way left turn lane on Douglas "appears to be working very well" cutting delays in heavy traffic.
December 2, 1964
Wide New Artery Gains Approval
A six-lane, 100-foot-wide artery to funnel traffic from Tolmie Avenue border into the heart of Victoria will be recommended to city council, probably at its next meeting.
The plan... will involve rerouting a six block section of the road on Rose.
An overpass is envisaged at the intersection of Finlayson Avenue and an underpass at the city border on Tolmie.
The traffic bottleneck which has developed at Rose and Hillside will be eliminated.
May 11, 1966
Green Light Expected on Renewal
Blanshard-Rose-Hillside in Van of Development
(aastra says: check the link for a "sample of urban renewal in Toronto"... you know, because Victoria is notorious for following Toronto's example, right? Apparently so, but only when it's something really regrettable.)
The first phase of a $2,000,000 plan to revitalize the city's most blighted areas will go to council...
There is little doubt that Victoria's first major urban renewal scheme will get the green light.
...the project will transform 30 depressed acres in the heart of the Blanshard-Rose-Hillside section to a spacious, landscaped development containing apartments, a school and recreation area, new and better road access and a special housing precinct.
Long Range Plan
If the project goes ahead, the part of Victoria with the highest concentration of welfare cases will, in an 18-month period, be in the vanguard of a long-range redevelopment program designed over future years to clean up most of the blight spots in the city.
The renewal area, on the fringe of the downtown core, is bounded by Hillside, Quadra, Kings, Blanshard, Pembroke, and Douglas.
It is... one of the older residential sections of the city and contains the largest concentration of poor housing.
Of the 127 residences in the section, 91 per cent were built before 1912. Seventy-six per cent of the homes have been classified by a social service survey as "poor," and 24 per cent as "fair" or "good."
Most households have an income of from $250 to $500 a month and are occupied by ethnic minorities who prefer the district because of the high concentration of their own people.
"I want to emphasize that we will be doing this ourselves," (City Planner) Greenhaigh told aldermen. "The only help we will get from Ottawa is in the form of cheques."
The 127 residences in the area would be acquired by the city and razed... The new plan would provide 120 living units, most of which would have three bedrooms.
Another important phase of the program would be the relocation of North Ward School on a seven-acre tract on the east side of the development between Hillside and Kings Road.
The city would provide the new school site and dispose of the present location, on Douglas Street, for commercial use.
There would be industrial and commercial buildings within the area, but they would be tightly controlled by zoning regulations and brought into conformity with the general atmosphere.
No Slum Risk
"We have no intention of seeing this type of housing degenerate into a slum area, as it has in some sections of Canada and the Old Country," he said.
The project would see Rose Street reconstructed within a 110-foot right-of-way on a new alignment as an extension of Blanshard Street. This road, with a landscaped centre boulevard, would separate commercial land use on the west side from residential use on the east.
There will be small parcels of land near the south end of the development, and located here are already a dairy distribution centre and a tire-and-battery outlet.
Planner Greenhaigh and his staff... were congratulated on the report... It was a good job and an example of fine City Hall teamwork...
July 13, 1966
Blighted Area Doom Nearer
Commissioner Okays Project
The Rose-Blanshard project -- Victoria's multi-million-dollar dream for an urban renewal scheme which would bring new life to the city's blighted core -- moved a big step nearer to reality Tuesday.
Area covered by the project is an older residential district with substantial portions of commercial and industrial properties. It lies within an area bounded by Hillside, Quadra, Kings, Blanshard, Pembroke, and Douglas, and occupies about 30 acres.
The main symptom of the disease which now afflicts the area, planners say, is a conglomeration of incompatible land uses to the disadvantage of all concerned.
Rose Street reconstruction, with its 110-foot right-of-way on a new alignment, will be developed as an extension of Blanshard. This road, with its landscaped centre boulevard, will separate commercial users on the west side from residences on the east.
May 3, 1967
City Reaches Halfway Mark on Purchase of Property
...project officer for the city and his assistants have been busy for weeks tying up parcels of land and have obtained rights to more than half of the 120-odd which will be needed.
All will probably be acquired before demolition begins.
The rebirth of the city's most badly blighted area will see about 30 acres renewed.
Offers for property are based not on what the city believes they are worth or what it can get them for, but on a fair professional appraisal, city officials said...
"It seems to me," said one senior official, "that we will, in this country, have to get away sooner or later from the concept that every man is entitled to own a home. With land taxes and other costs steadily mounting, it is soon going to be impossible for people in certain income groups."
June 2, 1967
Dilemma for Family, City
Where to Go -- Nowhere
Mr. and Mrs. Etherington and their four daughters have to get out of their run-down, mouse-ridden, earth-soiled Rose Street home -- and they have nowhere to go.
And the city, which needs to raze their home and 126 others in the area for its massive $1,600,000 urban renewal project, has nowhere to send them.
But, it seems, there are no rental properties available and both the Etheringtons and the city find themselves in a fix.
The house next door to 2644 Rose, where the Etheringtons live, was knocked downtown by a bulldozer last weekend, in an action which saw the city entering into the second phase of the urban renewal program which is designed to rehabilitate one of Victoria's most blighted areas.
Victoria has no intention of putting the Etheringtons or anyone else out on the street... That would defeat the whole spirit of the exercise.
...the city has acquired more than half the 127 properties it must have before the second phase of the urban renewal operation (demolition) can go into high gear.
June 23, 1968
Street Project Toeing Mark
First stage of the big road-building program in the city's Rose-Blanshard urban renewal area will start the first week in July...
About a month ago Victoria took the first steps toward expropriation of 11 properties in the 30-acre renewal site -- properties needed to widen Rose Street from Hillside to Bay.
...more than half of the land between Rose and Blanshard Street, needed as a site of the low-rental public housing project, had been acquired by the city and also a good portion of the property needed for the playground area north of the new North Ward School.
June 15, 1969
Only Wish A Home, Not Cash
A 91-year-old First World War widow is determined to fight City Hall until she is compensated with a home comparable to the one expropriated from her.
...have lived at 2648 Rose Street since 1921.
"Now they want to move us into a woodshed after all our years of living in our comfortable house,"
The house, a two-storey building with a basement, was built in 1904. It was 17 years old when Mrs. Telfer bought it as protection against rising rents.
The property is part of 140 acres set aside for development in phase two of the urban renewal plan.
In an interim report on the the progress of the scheme... city manager Dennis Young said private investors had either been attracted to the area or had expressed intentions of assembling property in the area.
A map of the proposed land use for the scheme shows the area west of Rose Street... as zoned for transient accommodation and retail commercial use.
Edited by aastra, 04 March 2019 - 11:05 AM.