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The More Victoria Changes, the More It Stays the Same...


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#141 aastra

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 08:20 PM

Daily Colonist
May 13, 1971
 
Blighted Beauty
 
In the heart of the provincial capital... lies one of Victoria's most priceless possessions -- the Inner Harbor.
 
But there is also blight and ugliness in the Inner Harbor.
 
The tourist who wanders away from the well-cared for Causeway finds himself confronted with unsightly warehouses, vacant stores, parking lots and messy industrial and commercial operations.
 
Sewage Seeps
 
...raw sewage goes into the water from community septic tanks in Victoria West.
 
...half a mile away, an industrial tank farm looks out over the Inner Harbor. (aastra says: they're talking about the tank farm on the Songhees in Vic West, not the other tank farm at Shoal Point)
 
In 1961, the Capital Regional Planning Board prepared a study from the city of Victoria recommending improvement of the "weakest part of downtown" -- the area bounded by Wharf and Government, Johnson Street bridge and the causeway.
 
The report stated that this area has most of the derelict downtown floor space, that it is subject to a general decline and that it is of low rental value.

For more than ten years, the city has prepared and commissioned one report after another, but nothing has happened...
 
The prolonged (aastra says: no kidding!!) controversy has resulted in three different groups promoting their views on what the Inner Harbor should look like.
 
On one side are those who insist that highrise buildings aren't necessarily ugly, but help revitalize a steadily declining downtown.
 
As long as the buildings are of a high architectural standard, they say, the city doesn't lose any of its appeal.
 
On another side are those who want to convert the entire Inner Harbor area into a park. Waterfront, they claim, should be used for the benefit of the public.
 
And then there are those in the middle who are willing to tolerate a certain amount of commercial activity (restaurants, shopping facilities, lowrise apartment buildings) as long as the public is assured of a fair share of waterfront access.
 
...the three factions could continue to engage in their verbal battles until the public is sufficiently aroused to take a definite stand on the matter.
 
...there are, however, strong arguments in favor of resolving the dispute in the near future.
 
Many city officials believe that failure to move Ocean Cement will kill future prospects of developing the Inner Harbor for at least another 25 years. (aastra says: 25 years sounds like an awfully long time)
 
Are there plans for eventual development of the harbor's west side which, at present, houses the industrial tank farm?

Edited by aastra, 25 March 2019 - 08:36 PM.


#142 aastra

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 08:23 PM

 

did that hot dog vendor fix it?

 

Sadly, no. The cart blocked the view.



#143 aastra

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 08:32 PM

 

 

On one side are those who insist that highrise buildings aren't necessarily ugly, but help revitalize a steadily declining downtown.
 
As long as the buildings are of a high architectural standard, they say, the city doesn't lose any of its appeal.
 
On another side are those who want to convert the entire Inner Harbor area into a park. Waterfront, they claim, should be used for the benefit of the public.
 
And then there are those in the middle who are willing to tolerate a certain amount of commercial activity (restaurants, shopping facilities, lowrise apartment buildings) as long as the public is assured of a fair share of waterfront access.

 

Or maybe the dichotomies and competing premises weren't entirely valid to begin with? How about high-quality lowrise commercial buildings and apartments with restaurants and shops that not only assure a "fair share" of waterfront access but actually enable more & better waterfront access than would otherwise be possible?



#144 On the Level

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 09:15 PM

 

There was a military presence established on the waterfront between Cook St and Clover Point as early as 1866. A rifle range was located on the waterfront from 1900 until 1931.

 

https://victoriaheri.../fairfield.html



#145 aastra

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 09:20 PM

Daily Colonist
July 12, 1963
 
Electronic Device to Sort Circle Circus
 
An electronic "brain" will control traffic signal lights to speed the flow of traffic when Fountain Circle is removed in a few months.
 
City council yesterday approved purchase of the equipment... but failed to give full acceptance to the plan to replace the roundabout with an intersection and new traffic islands.
 
It also gave the necessary authority for purchase of a strip of land on Hillside Avenue for road widening when the changeover takes place.
 
The device for automatic control of traffic density will be the first of its kind with three-phase operator to be installed in British Columbia.
 
Small "detectors" placed in the roadway about 200 feet from the intersection will feed information on traffic density to an electronic computer which controls the lights.
 
The result... will be to allow the maximum flow of traffic in any direction through the intersection.
 
The sequence of lights will change automatically according to the volume of traffic at a given time.
 
...the latest scheme for a signalized intersection provides "every desired movement" for both north-south and cross traffic as well as permitting left turns.
 
"The only reason the committee is recommending acceptance of the scheme is that the electronic brain will make it possible to greatly improve the flow of traffic."
 
*****
 
Daily Colonist
July 12, 1963
 
 
Space age playground equipment painted in bright reds, yellows and blues is helping keep a record number of children happy in Saanich council's summer park recreation program.
 
"This is the latest equipment they are using in Europe and it's proving very popular with the children,"
 
"We copied the designs and made them up in our own workshop."
 
Mainly climbing "trees" of tubular steel, some of the equipment provides a sliding pole as a quick way to get down to the ground again.
 
Another type uses a discarded truck wheel on top of a steel pole with chains hanging down... children hang from the chains and swing around in a circle.


#146 Nparker

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 10:08 PM

Restore Fountain Circle.
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#147 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 26 March 2019 - 06:45 AM

and let that “brain” go to waste?

#148 aastra

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Posted 09 May 2019 - 04:42 PM

This article is focused on Vancouver but still, you get the idea. Some excerpts:

 

*****

 

 

House-hunting in Vancouver? Bring lots of cash -- and a tent

Globe and Mail
April 5, 1980

 

...thousands of families in Ontario and Eastern Canada are thinking of packing their station wagons and heading for the Pacific Coast for a new life in the golden West.

Daffodils and tulips have already peaked. Vancouver's 60,000 street trees have burst into blossom. It's that time of the year when locals brag that they may comfortably ski down a mountain before lunch and sail around English Bay until dinner.

But wait. Listen first to Jim Patterson, British Columbia's embattled rentalsman. ''If you're coming out on spec, you should have lots of money -- and a tent."

...finding a job can be tough enough, without the double-whammy of a seemingly insane housing market...

In Vancouver, one of the tightest housing markets in North America, the vacancy rate is .2 per cent. In Victoria, it is .1 per cent, and in some suburban areas it is a flat zero.

Average house prices in Greater Vancouver, which rose 7 per cent last year, leaped 8.3 per cent to $76,811 in the first two months of this year. ''Don't bother looking for worse statistics," says Richard McAlary, regional economist with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. ''They can't get any worse."

...B.C. led the country into its last housing crisis, in 1973-75. Rent controls were imposed in the province in 1974...

...landlord and tenant groups, revived and infused with a new militancy, are pressing the federal and provincial governments for incentives to boost rental construction.

Small professional investors and the rental construction industry have been in a sulk for months about Ottawa's cancellation of popular MURB tax shelters - Multiple-Unit Residential Buildings - that permitted the depreciation of capital costs against personal income.

Ottawa bureaucrats have acknowledged that while the West would have benefited from prolonged tax sheltering, that was insufficient justification to maintain a $10-million nation-wide program.

Opinion here is that it will take a broad new program by the federal Government, reintroducing tax incentives and dealing with high interest rates, to improve the B.C. picture.

Rental market analysis by the rentalsman's office shows that dizzying dips in the roller-coaster rate of apartment construction in the past decade have coincided with elimination of federal incentives provided by the Revenue Department and CMHC.

The Human Resources Ministry, the bailiff of bankrupted dreams, has no empty beds in its usual emergency shelters. It has about 300 people bunked with friends and in Vancouver hotels and motels.

Low wage earners have been forced on to the street by rent increases of up to $250 on apartments they had been renting for $450 a month.

Rents on a one-bedroom apartment in a five-year-old building in Vancouver are averaging up to $375 a month. About 25 per cent of the renters already are paying out more than 35 per cent of their gross income for rent.

The housing market in Vancouver requires a wrenching adjustment for those newly arrived from most other cities in Canada. ''We've had people living in tents before when the vacancy rate was much higher than it is now,"

 

...


Edited by aastra, 09 May 2019 - 04:52 PM.

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#149 Sparky

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Posted 09 May 2019 - 05:33 PM

^ “The Human Resources Ministry, the baliff of bankrupted dreams ...”

Priceless.

If a reporter was to pound that out on his keyboard today...it could possibly be his last.

#150 aastra

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Posted 16 May 2019 - 03:58 PM

If Victoria was a movie, how many sequels and/or reboots would audiences have suffered through by now?

 

 

$6,000,000 Mayfair Open to Public Today
Daily Colonist
October 16, 1963

Bracing Themselves

A number of merchants on this part of Douglas Street, most of them on the Saanich side of the boundary, were put out of business some time ago by loss of trade resulting from the Capital Improvement District Commission's Douglas Street parking ban.

...one of the diehards, who had operated a drug store there for nearly nine years, saw the handwriting on the wall and locked up his store... with two years and two months yet to go on his building lease.

"I couldn't see any future," said Mr. Bruce...

Parking a Must

"This is exactly what I expected would happen when they took parking away," said Saanich Couns. Joseph Casey. "...as long as there is no parking, they cannot do any business."

 

******

 

 

"Downtown" Soon at Saanich Line
Daily Colonist
September 30, 1962

Greater Victoria shoppers in a few years' time will call the city-Saanich boundary on Douglas the "downtown" commercial district, a Saanich councillor predicted yesterday.

Coun. Gregory Cook said he thought downtown businesses will move to the fringes of the large Mayfair shopping centre under construction just south of the Saanich boundary at Douglas and Tolmie.

Major Area

Two community planners agreed the mile-long stretch of land east of Douglas between the Town-and-Country shopping centre and the Mayfair shopping centre will become a major commercial area, but felt there was no immediate danger of city merchants suffering because of it.


Edited by aastra, 16 May 2019 - 03:59 PM.


 



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