I watched the demolition of the Empire Landmark Hotel in the West End over the course of about 11 months. I would walk by and it seemed like each day, bit-by-bit, a floor was gone. It wasn’t a particularly lovely building by any means, but it was an icon on the Downtown Vancouver landscape. Rising 42 storeys and topped with a revolving restaurant, it opened in 1973 and closed in 2017. Now it’s a hole in the ground until two new residential towers are built.
It got me thinking about the ever-changing landscape in Vancouver, and how even in my neighbourhood some trees outlast buildings. So, here are three architecturally stunning buildings that Vancouver has gained and lost over the last century. If you can think of any more, please leave a comment and I’ll add it to the list.
3 Cool Vancouver Buildings That Don’t Exist Anymore
Georgia Medical Dental Building Built: 1927-1929 Demolished: 1989 Where: On the corner of Hornby and Georgia What’s there now: Cathedral Place About: Built in 1927-29, the Medical-Dental Building was the first art deco skyscraper built in Vancouver and was designed by the same architects who did the Marine Building, McCarter and Nairne. “Like the Marine Building it rose in tiers, topped by pale terra cotta that dripped off the brick facade like ice cream,” reported the Vancouver Sun.
The Changing Vancouver blog calls this next one “the saddest loss of a heritage building in the city.”
Birks Building Built: 1912-1913 Demolished: 1974 Where: Granville and Georgia What’s there now: Scotia Tower About: “[It was] an 11-storey Edwardian masterpiece with an elegant terra cotta facade and a graceful curved corner,” according to the Vancouver Sun. “The corner of Georgia and Granville was rounded glass windows all the way up. It was quite spectacular. That’s where the Birks clock was for years and years. It was a familiar meeting place: ‘Meet you at the Birks clock, Georgia and Granville.’”
Second Hotel Vancouver Built: 1912-1916 Demolished: 1949. It closed 10 years earlier and turned into a government administration building during World War II, while the third Hotel Vancouver was opened. Where: Georgia between Howe and Granville What’s there now: TD Tower About: “Features included arched windows, castle-like turrets and a 14th floor that was adorned with eight-foot tall terra cotta moose and buffalo head sculptures. Gargoyles, Canadian-style. The hotel was big, with 700 rooms, several dining rooms, two ballrooms, a billiard room, shops and offices. And it was a study in elegance, from its three-storey entrance portico to its renowned rooftop garden.” [Source: Vancouver Sun]
Green Day’s explosive, award-winning, Broadway phenomenon American Idiot is coming to North Vancouver, presented by URP.
Green Day’s American Idiot in North Vancouver
Where: Centennial Theatre (2300 Lonsdale Ave, North Vancouver) When: November 5 to November 10, 2019 at 8:00pm Tickets: Available online now ($25-$45) or by calling (604) 984-4484
Winner of two Tony Awards® and the Grammy® Award for Best Musical Show Album, American Idiot is the story of three boyhood friends, each searching for meaning in a post 9/11, suburbia, discovering love, loss, sex, drugs, and rock and roll along the way.
DanceHouse, in partnership with Dancers of Damelahamid, will launch its 2019/20 season with Australia’s acclaimed Bangarra Dance Theatre in the Canadian Premiere of Spirit.
Bangarra Dance Theatre’s Spirit
When: October 25 & 26, 2019 at 8:00pm Where: Vancouver Playhouse (600 Hamilton St, Vancouver) Tickets: From $35 available online or by calling (604) 801-6225
Australian dance company fuses traditional Indigenous culture with contemporary movement in a powerful exploration of ceremonial storytelling
Choreographed by Bangarra’s Artistic Director Stephen Page and former Assistant Artistic Director Bernadette Walong-Sene, the retrospective piece is a visionary fusion of nine of the company’s celebrated Indigenous and contemporary works that boldly bridge past and present.
If there’s one place in the city that’s full of creepies, crawlies, and things that go bump in the night it’s the Vancouver Aquarium. Join them for the next After Hours Halloween event on October 31st.
After Hours Halloween at the Vancouver Aquarium
When: Thursday, October 31, 2019 6:30pm and 11:00pm Where: Vancouver Aquarium in Stanley Park Tickets:Available Online with proceeds supporting ocean conversation
Dress yourself up (or come as you are) and wander the galleries, cocktail in hand, scouting out slithery snakes, spiky sea urchins and potentially hungry piranhas. Are the anemones in the wet lab stingers?
Buy your tickets in advance, come with your romantic partner or friends, and compete to win the costume and trivia contests. Watch A Reef Reborn: 4D. Revisit (and reassess) your fear of sharks as you listen to an interpretive talk about these cartilaginous creatures of the deep. Do the Monster Mash, whether or not our DJ spins the tune that goes with it.
Please dress in ocean-friendly fashion, without sequins, glitter, balloons, feathers, straws/stir sticks, bubbles, confetti, sparklers, beaded necklaces, glassware, glow sticks, real or fake weapons.
The Beanstock Coffee Festival invites coffee lovers from Vancouver and beyond to convene and connect with local micro-roasters, sample some of the best craft coffee in Western Canada, and learn about the importance of socially responsible brew.
Beanstock Coffee Festival
When: Saturday, November 2 & Sunday, November 3, 2019 Where: Performance Works on Granville Island Tickets:Available Online
Coffee is the world’s favourite beverage with more than 2.2 billion cups consumed around the world each day – but not every cup is created the same. Particularly in recent years, third wave coffee – a movement towards high-quality, transparent and fair trade alternatives – has skyrocketed with speciality growers, traders and roasters uniting to improve each stage of production, from farming and processing techniques, to distributing the final product.
Beanstock was created by a team of industry professionals committed to expanding public awareness of third wave coffee and local micro-roasters, while also advocating for a more sustainable future for coffee.
The festival will take place at Performance Works on Granville Island, featuring 30 independent micro-roasters, including Agro Coffee Roasters, Luna Coffee, Prototype Coffee, Pallet Coffee Roasters, and Rooftop Coffee Roasters.
Fall is a great time of year to shine a light on some of the spookier species that call Stanley Park home. While owls and bats certainly get most of the attention at Halloween, there is another creature of the night prowling the forest and howling at the moon: the urban coyote.
Coyotes in Vancouver
Coyotes are native to western North America but can now be found throughout the continent and have even migrated as far south as Central America. They are a relatively new species to Stanley Park having first come to the City of Vancouver in the 1980s.