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[James Bay] Crystal Court Motel site | Unknown plans

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#461 Nparker

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 09:52 AM

So instead of an iconic,graceful curvy tower we'll likely get another generic, boxy Era clone, minus the million dollar amenity.

No, we'll get a 5 or 6-storey wood-frame brick-stucco rectangular box.



#462 AllseeingEye

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 09:57 AM

No, we'll get a 5 or 6-storey wood-frame brick-stucco rectangular box.

..........which won't impede those "iconic" views of the Sooke Hills, meaning in the estimation of the 'usual suspects' that such a development will be a perfect solution. We've already heard Pam weigh in the subject "that height" will be the contentious variable here. Of course. Ugh.....



#463 jonny

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 10:08 AM

..........which won't impede those "iconic" views of the Sooke Hills, meaning in the estimation of the 'usual suspects' that such a development will be a perfect solution. We've already heard Pam weigh in the subject "that height" will be the contentious variable here. Of course. Ugh.....

 

We also know that Isitt and his new sidekick aren't fans of height (or any scenario where anybody makes any money) so that's three on council we can be fairly certain won't be huge fans of anything that pushes the envelope.



#464 Mike K.

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 10:14 AM

So instead of an iconic,graceful curvy tower we'll likely get another generic, boxy Era clone, minus the million dollar amenity.


And as far as officialdom is concerned that is a major victory.

We had a great opportunity, we squandered it away, now we'll likely end up with something that is nonthreatening to the Humboldt Valley unicorns.

Concert is a fantastic developer, but gosh golly their designs are stuck in a by-gone "era." Belvedere, Astoria, Era, they all look the same. And we're likely to see something very safe, very utilitarian on this property.

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#465 AllseeingEye

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 10:22 AM

We also know that Isitt and his new sidekick aren't fans of height (or any scenario where anybody makes any money) so that's three on council we can be fairly certain won't be huge fans of anything that pushes the envelope.

Yup, and ridiculous as it is in this town, "pushing the envelope" seems to be anything over 5 stories (witness the Northern Junk proposal). That is nuts. I have no skin in the development game (thankfully) as I'd sure hate to have my livelihood based on building anything in Victoria. Remind me again who is Isitt's newby / philosophical 'sidekick'?



#466 jonny

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 10:34 AM

You know, there's something to be said for companies like Chard, Concert and Jawl who just plain get stuff done. All three stickhandle their projects through the City of Victoria quagmire, and they make it look easy. Chard and Concert in particular have each contributed a handful of buildings that have improved big sections of downtown and upped the bar in terms of quality and expectations.

 

It's really the finishing touches and the quality of materials that make a safe design good rather than mediocre, and these guys have figured it out.

 

But, at some point we need more than these ho-hum safe designs. For instance, I think the Era is a great addition, but the design of it is painfully safe. Same goes for 834.

 

Yup, and ridiculous as it is in this town, "pushing the envelope" seems to be anything over 5 stories (witness the Northern Junk proposal). That is nuts. I have no skin in the development game (thankfully) as I'd sure hate to have my livelihood based on building anything in Victoria. Remind me again who is Isitt's newby / philosophical 'sidekick'?

Loveday.

 

Victoria is really all about location. For instance, none of the usual crowd care much about the Era. A couple blocks away, the much smaller Sovereign created much fuss because it was in the heart of Old Town.

 

I can't recall any fuss over the Promontory, and it's now the tallest building in Victoria. Try to put that a few hundred meters away in James Bay and all hell would have broken loose. The public meetings would have lasted weeks, with hundreds of speakers oppossed.

 

The Northern Junk is contentious because it is on the harbour, which is super precious and we must at all costs ensure nothing changes on the harbour, after all.

 

There is no better example than the super contentious St Andrews School proposal where across the street a building twice as high is going up.


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#467 Nparker

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 10:34 AM

...Remind me again who is Isitt's newby / philosophical 'sidekick'?

Jeremy "I worship the ground Ben walks on" Loveday.


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#468 Nparker

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 10:40 AM

...There is no better example than the super contentious St Andrews School proposal where across the street a building twice as high is going up.

Keep in mind that the St. Andrew's proposal has the potential to destroy one of Victoria's "ancient" and "sacred" urban farms, that supplies the region with so much of our sustenance (insert sarcasm emoji here).



#469 Rob Randall

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:09 AM

Getting back to square one, let's look at the site.

 

The QV is in back, it's not mandatory to respect it, but I don't think anyone benefits from it being walled off. Piling or splitting the massing worked well in previous models compared to 6+ storeys straight across.

 

It's bounded by three other unique old buildings: St. Ann's, The Empress and the Legislature. These are all unique, interesting shapes. Whatever goes here should be architecturally distinctive and bold. This is important! If you place another Concert cookie-cutter on this site it will look out of place. People will look at it and say, What's that generic building doing there? Is it lost? Take it back to Yates Street where it belongs, this neighbourhood is for grownups only.

 

You can't really see St. Ann's dome from the site but it's there. The best way for this site to interact with St. Ann's is to focus on the greenway, a pedestrian-friendly path all along Belleville that hopefully will funnel some tourists up to St. Ann's beautiful grounds. Normally I don't like setbacks but in this case it could work well as previous models showed. You sacrifice site coverage so you would need more height on the tower. 

 

The critics want everything, no height, lots of gardens and open space, lots of affordability contributions and high quallity architecture. A "tall" order, no pun intended.


Edited by Rob Randall, 12 January 2015 - 11:14 AM.

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“I mean I just don’t understand the big Texas part, like maybe he’s from Texas? I want to know the back story.”


#470 aastra

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:12 AM

 

The Northern Junk is contentious because it is on the harbour, which is super precious and we must at all costs ensure nothing changes on the harbour, after all.

 

Except for the JSB, which we must change drastically, at all costs.



#471 aastra

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:21 AM

Concert's highrises tend to be very conventional, for sure. They're not unattractive buildings. I'd like to see more of them around town. But if they're going to develop this site it would be nice if the architecture is a bit more distinctive. I tend to like Concert's lowrise buildings more than their highrise buildings.



#472 Rob Randall

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:29 AM

^Yes, they are fine buildings but let's say I was invited to an event at the Legislature, Empress or St. Ann's I would wear nicer clothing than if I were merely meeting a friend outside the Bulk Barn on Yates. I just don't want to see yet another Boring Beige® stucco and Innoffensively Coloured Brick™ condo.


“I mean I just don’t understand the big Texas part, like maybe he’s from Texas? I want to know the back story.”


#473 D.L.

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:40 AM

Here's the single tower design for Crystalview by Westbank and James Cheng

 

OZ0DTZEV97RTC34PXNYK.jpg


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#474 jonny

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:41 AM

^ That would be so fantastic it's not even funny.


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#475 AllseeingEye

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 11:50 AM

^ That would be so fantastic it's not even funny.

Yes agree completely; too bad here in NIMBY-by-the-Sea this proposal or anything close to it has precisely two chances of ever seeing the light of day, namely Zero and None. After all we wouldn't want to look like Vancouver.....<*face-palm*>.....

 

So in true Victoria fashion we'll wind up with something bland, safe and inoffensive, which is to say generally dull and architecturally uninteresting, but "hey" at least it won't be tall.


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#476 Mixed365

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 01:24 PM

I have a feeling Concert will be purposely sitting on this property for a very, very long time. At least until City Park is well underway/finished will they be able to unlock its true value. 

Being a nationwide developer and financed through pension funds, they are not in any rush. 


Edited by Mixed365, 12 January 2015 - 01:25 PM.

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#477 grantpalin

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Posted 12 January 2015 - 09:19 PM

Here's the single tower design for Crystalview by Westbank and James Cheng

 

OZ0DTZEV97RTC34PXNYK.jpg

I like modern design myself. I doubt the above concept has a chance as-is because it's much too modern for Victoria and James Bay. But we need something new on that block.



#478 Mike K.

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Posted 13 January 2015 - 08:11 AM

Shutters in Vic West is just across the harbour and was well received. It's arguably the most modern design in the City.

Something cutting edge could work, but it'd have to be done right.

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#479 tedward

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Posted 13 January 2015 - 09:32 AM

I like modern design myself. I doubt the above concept has a chance as-is because it's much too modern for Victoria and James Bay. But we need something new on that block.

 

Have you been down that way recently and looked at what is across from the site? The new developments on Humboldt are quite similar to my eye. That curved modern look has already been built in the area.


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#480 jonny

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Posted 13 January 2015 - 10:11 AM

Have you been down that way recently and looked at what is across from the site? The new developments on Humboldt are quite similar to my eye. That curved modern look has already been built in the area.

 

The Marriott is quite modern and is only a couple of blocks away. It's not curvy, but it's also not Boring Beige® stucco and Innoffensively Coloured Brick™ (thanks Rob!).  


Edited by jonny, 13 January 2015 - 10:11 AM.


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