Lee Building Centennial


Wednesday, July 11th, 2012 — 1:29pm PST
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It’s not everyday that an apartment building in Vancouver celebrates 100 years of life so the Mount Pleasant Business Improvement Association is making sure to mark the occasion of the Lee Building’s Centennial. On Sunday, July 15th, 2012 they’ll host an event at Heritage Hall on Main where past residents, merchants, and anyone who’s passed the landmark building on Main and Broadway can celebrate its history.


1939 – 2500 Block Main Street. VPL Accession Number: 25005. Dominion Photo Co.

The Mount Pleasant BIA has an informative blog post on their site that includes insights from Tracy Lee, granddaughter of Mr. Herbert Lee.

Mr. Lee, a pioneer, city builder and sound businessman with an active interest in city affairs, bought a store and grocer business in 1903 and named it H.O. Lee Grocery (at 2425 Main Street, currently F as in Frank Clothing). In 1908 Mr. Lee was president of the Westminster Lacrosse Club and in 1920 he helped organize a second lacrosse club. He was also a leading member of the executive of the Liberal Association.

Let me tell you: if you think Main and Broadway is a bustling place nowadays, it was THE place to be in the early 1900s. In the midst of a prolonged real-estate boom, 9th Ave became Broadway and Westminster Ave became Main Street. A pensive and proactive observer, Mr. Lee saw all this action happening around him and became part of the boost by building the Lee Building, a seven-storey office and apartment block at 175 Broadway (where a church was relocated elsewhere to make way for the handsome new building). As the tallest building south of False Creek, the Lee Building dominated the newly renamed corner. Continue Reading »

Everyone is welcome to stop by the event at Heritage Hall (3102 Main Street) from 11:00am to 3:00pm this Sunday, July 15th. Tracy Forsyth will be a guest speaker along with historians and heritage architects.

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One comment

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