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PROPOSED
937 View Street
Uses: rental, commercial
Address: 937 View Street
Municipality: Victoria
Region: Downtown Victoria
Storeys: 19
937 View Street is a proposal to build an 19-storey rental complex in the City of Victoria's Harris Green neig... (view full profile)
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[Downtown Victoria] 937 View Street | Rentals | 19-storeys | Proposed


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#121 Nparker

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 12:14 PM

So View Towers gets to stand unimpeded and monumental for another 50 years.  :(



#122 corvus

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 12:34 PM

six different looks! that's a whole lot to get turned down again. 



#123 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 12:49 PM

 

The issue is View Towers. Rip that down and redo properly.

 

I guess it's too bad there isn't a museum inside View Towers. It would make the decision to demo and replace it that much easier.

 

Shadowing would be extensive on this block, no doubt. But then again, this would actually be a decent looking rental building.

 

I agree that some serious thought needs to be given to the ultimate future of View Towers. Planning that defers to heritage buildings is one thing, but planning that defers to major mistakes like View Towers is something else altogether. What a crazy city. On the one hand we want to evict SFD's from SFD neighbourhoods even though many people really like the SFD neighbourhoods, but on the other hand we want to bend over backwards to accommodate View Towers even though many people have been critical of View Towers since day one.


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#124 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 01:04 PM

Whenever people want to defend View Towers as it currently stands because it provides hundreds of much-needed cheap rental units, I think we should also remember that the massing and overall esthetic of the View Towers building has delayed and/or outright prevented new housing on the lot to the east of it and on the lot to the south of it. And maybe on some adjacent properties as well.

 

I think the ideal scenario would involve an extended plan to develop this lot and the corner lot, and then the View Towers site itself. No rental units would be lost, the shadowing situation & ground-level deficiencies could be improved significantly, and the esthetic and functional misfires that defined View Towers would then be history (you know, like something you might see in a museum exhibit).


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#125 Mike K.

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 02:03 PM

The lot to the south of it is owned by the VT owner.
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#126 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 04:28 PM

Yep. View Towers is one of those odd projects that actually ended up impeding its own completion:

 

 

Daily Colonist
March 2, 1972

Tower Shrink Not Likely

Developer George Mulek has been asked by the city of Victoria to voluntarily reduce the size of the apartment-store centre, to be completed at View and Quadra, but there apparently isn't much likelihood that he will.

Mayor Peter Pollen said Wednesday that Mulek was "unbending" in his attitude, and seemed determined to stick by his original plan to build a second tower slightly taller than the 19-storey apartment building already at the site. The second building would have a supermarket and other stores.

The grey, unfinished look of the first building, completed last year, has brought considerable criticism from the city.

But appearances, says Pollen, isn't the major issue.

"It's a matter of density," he said. There would be over 500 units on a relatively small piece of land. There just wouldn't be enough open space, or even really enough room to breathe."

Mulek's argument is that the second tower will have to remain as planned to make the whole project economically sound. There is no legal way Victoria can block construction of the second tower.

"We can only say that we have tried vigorously to get Mr. Mulek to co-operate in the spirit of community interest on a voluntary basis," the mayor said.

 

*****

 

 

Daily Colonist

October 18, 1972

 

City Irritation Over Highrise Hits Sidewalk

City council's public works committee Tuesday discussed ways and means of repairing the sidewalk at View and Quadra which was damaged during construction of the controversial highrise building at that corner.

In a letter to the city, Mulek replied, "We want to cooperate with the city in every way possible and are prepared to accept responsibility for damage to the street and sidewalk resulting from our construction operations..."

But Mulek also said there would be further damage when he proceeds with the second part of his project -- a twin tower to the existing one. Permanent repair work, he said, should be delayed until after that tower is completed.

The trouble is that the city is trying to prevent construction of the second phase, but it's still questionable whether it can.

If the city repairs the sidewalk and the second phase of the project is abandoned, the city engineer feels he will have a hard time getting the $9,500 from Mulek.

Mayor Peter Pollen told the committee it was immaterial what the developer would build and whether he would build it; the sidewalk should be repaired.

"This man doesn't have a license to rip up our streets and leave them. The place is a mess. He has shown no social conscience," he said.

...this is where the controversial proposal for the second tower stands now: Mulek has approval for the project from the previous council, but this council says he must first consolidate his total building site. After that, he could apply for a building permit.

Until now, Mulek hasn't consolidated the site. According to City Engineer James Garnett, "The poor devil doesn't dare consolidate, for fear he will lose the approval given by the previous council."

On the other hand, council has refused to give Mulek assurance that he will get a permit subject to consolidation.

"The poor devil doesn't know where he stands,"

 

*****

 

Anyway, all these decades later methinks it should be pretty clear what needs to happen. But, the CoV's "planning" is once again not able to see the forest for the trees.


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#127 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 04:32 PM

 

the CoV's "planning" is once again not able to see the forest for the trees.

 

"trees" being a metaphor for "buildings", and "forest" being a metaphor for "the city's built form"



#128 Mike K.

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 06:02 PM

Can you break it down for us, though?

I’d like the urbanists to get it.

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#129 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 06:15 PM

"urbanists" being a metaphor for what?

 

After all these years I'm still puzzling over the meaning of "vibrant".



#130 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 06:29 PM

 

Can you break it down for us, though?

 

If you ever get a chance to ask Godzilla his opinion about View Towers, that's how you should phrase the question.


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#131 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 06:32 PM

^ post of the month!

#132 Mike K.

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 06:48 PM

The jury wants a definition of “built form.”
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#133 aastra

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Posted 26 May 2022 - 10:04 PM

You build me up for all these years and now you take me down? That's not good form, man.



#134 Mike K.

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Posted 27 May 2022 - 03:28 AM

Surely we all see the haphazard way officialdom blesses and rejects projects. A 20-storey tower on Fort and Blanshard, good to go. A highrise adjacent to VT gets lead down the path to failure.

We’ll recall, that developers have been trying to get something built on this property for 15 years.

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#135 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 27 May 2022 - 03:44 AM

Maybe this is one of the very few developers that didn’t donate to Helps.,

#136 aastra

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Posted 27 May 2022 - 08:54 AM

 

We’ll recall, that developers have been trying to get something built on this property for 15 years.

 

This is what I'm saying. Perpetual housing crisis (that's why View Towers was built, lest we forget, because the housing crisis was raging back in the 1960s), and yet the prime lots all around View Towers have been stale for ages. The parking lot site has had at least three proposals just during the VV era.


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#137 Mike K.

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Posted 27 May 2022 - 09:37 AM

Have you ever noticed, that during housing boom times, the cries over housing supply are the loudest, then evaporate when we hit a building lull?

It’s the war is peace thing.

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#138 Casual Kev

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Posted 27 May 2022 - 04:23 PM

Even if the View Tower is an eyesore, it still serves (served?) its purpose as an affordable rental site that doesn't need to be propped up by taxpayers. The spillover of addiction and homelessness into the streets is in part a result of people who would at least have a roof under their heads (ergo a semblance of home and stability) no longer having that option. Instead of someone paying their cheap landlords through market forces, now they can't do that anymore and taxpayers have to cover everything from social workers to officers to temporary hotels as a result of the myriad of problems caused by people already struggling with poverty and/or mental health not being able to afford any time of shelter on their own. 

 

Maybe I'm getting a bit defensive here over the ill-reputation of certain buildings, but ultimately shelter is an expensive yet basic necessity and it's never a bad choice to let people build to meet that demand. If the current council were present during the times the VT, the Orchard House and other unsightly concrete high-rises were built, our parks would've long become favelas and we'd be giving Vancouver's DTES a run for its money.

 

All that said, it goes without saying the CoV proves itself to be an embarrassment once again and we're way past the time of the province doing something about pumping hundreds of millions into a region that refuses to let people build homes while pocketing everyone else's money.


Edited by Casual Kev, 27 May 2022 - 04:26 PM.


 



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