Not So Fast
[ Comment posted in response to Why Go Downtown? ]
Lance says: “And we are starting to see intensification in Vancouver’s suburbs such as Arbutus Walk in Kitsilano, Collingwood Village, and the development around Kingsway and Knight.” Really?
At Arbutus Walk, the neighbourhood had a real impact on the planning, and it shows in the result. Collingwood Village is developer droppings. Planners themselves have agreed with Norquay Working Group critics that King Edward Village is “a mistake.” East is east and west is west!
Lance, spend half an hour hanging around KEV: Grok on a streetscape deadened by a mass of retail still unoccupied after 2-3 years, dance the line of pigeon poo under the archway, dodge back-alley traffic while strolling the interior public space, muse on how accumulated dirt under the public art animals provides context, meditate on the 12 symbolic dead trees (over half of them) in the middle of Kingsway. City of Vancouver tosses in some minimal public realm and then immediately neglects it.
Welcome to Vancouver’s very first “neighbourhood centre,” the only concrete evidence so far of its multimillion-dollar CityPlan exercise launched in 1995.
By the way, that “new library” at KEV was no developer gift to the community – only a simulacrum sweetheart payoff of fitting out and providing ten years of no-payment occupancy. Closed since Oct 25 due to flooding. I bet the term lease clock ticks along all the while.
Over to the bike theme. That attempt at median beautification on Kingsway just eats up road space that should go to a bike lane. Up the hill, Norquay wants a bike lane, NOT a median tart-up. Come out the Norquay open houses on Feb 19 and 21 and tell that to the “planners” — who just will not listen to us who live here.