The Kenilworth on Flickr.
One of the better of the grand old apartment blocks of the West End of Vancouver, half of the Kenilworth is 100 years old this year. The other half is 101 years old.
According to a friend that lives there and the only online reference I could find for the building, this photo from the city of Vancouver archives, the southern wing of the building, on the corner of Cardero and Haro was built first, in 1911 with the northern wing following a year later.
It’s somewhat surprising that I can’t find more info on it online as, when it was built, it would’ve been one of the larger buildings in a West End composed mainly of single family houses at the time.
It’s a difficult building to get a good photograph of as the trees have grown tall around it, not to mention the excellent garden maintained by it’s tenants that spills out into the sidewalk at times but, it has always been one of the more desirable buildings to live in in the West End.
Malcolm Lowry was right. on Flickr.
His “Lament of the Pacific Northwest” is as astute an observation about Vancouver today as it was when he wrote it in 1949.
This poem was written about the very bandstand pictured here which, in over 20 years of living downtown, I have yet to see a band perform.
They are taking down the beautiful houses once built with loving hands
But still the old bandstand stands where no band stands
With clawbars they have gone to work on the poor lovely houses above the sands
At their callous work of eviction that no human law countermands
Calously at their work of hearbreak that no civic heart understands
In this pompous and joyless city of police moral perfection and one man stands
Where you are brutally thrown out of beer parlors for standing where no man stands
Where the pigeons roam free and the police listen to each pigeon’s demands
And they are taking down the beautiful homes once with loving hands
But still the old bandstand stands where no band stands.
A developing sense of scale on Flickr.
The controversial development at Davie and Bidwell is well under way now. All but the Facade of West End landmark Maxine’s, a former brothel and bawdy house built in 1905, have been torn down and the pit is dug for the new 21 story building that will replace it.
Now, I’m all in favour of densification and, the foot of Davie Street remains quite under developed. The restaurants, insurance agents and green grocer that lined this stretch of Davie Street always seemed like a severe under-utilzation of the space and, all struggled to survive as well, changing regularly.
Looking at the size of this pit, compared to the lovely old Sands Motel across the street though and, one has to wonder if this is indeed the right choice for the location.
Personally, I’ll miss the building that formerly held the green grocer on the corner. Briefly, in 1990, the building was home to a lovely café where my continuing addiction to and love affair with espresso began.
Echos of Coal Harbour’s Past on Flickr.
While generally known these days as a forest of gleaming, glass towers, Coal Harbour was not always such.
For the first 100 years of Vancouver’s existence, Coal Harbour was a hub of industry. Factories, Warehouses and Diesel fumes abounded. The trainyard dominated and, at the edges were rooming houses, apartment blocks and a few old houses.
The trainyard is long gone, Factories and Warehouses but a memory but, a few of the old houses and apartment blocks remain. Along with this one old rooming house, sticking out like a sore thumb on Melville Street.
They now live out their lives enveloped in the shadows of their more grandiose neighbours, catching only the occasional shaft of sun each morning.
Rolleiflex Automat, Ilford Delta 100.