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This entire saga has fully exposed the falseness at the core of "heritage preservation" politics in Victoria.
Just in case there was still a shred of doubt after the JSB saga...
Could the references to the Reid tower controversy possibly be any more inapplicable? We get it. Decades ago, somebody wanted to build a cluster of modern highrise towers right on the waterfront. What's the relevance to the current proposal to build a singular short lowrise building on top of Northern Junk?
Note how that long piece contains no mention of the many old buildings that once occupied the district only to be wiped out later and replaced with void. The preservation mission dedicates itself to preserving the altered cityscape while disregarding all opportunities to fill back in some of what was lost. The park right next door was created by wiping out some old buildings. We're supposed to believe wiping out buildings is no big deal -- we don't even need to mention it, it's so inconsequential -- but adding levels on top is an extremely big deal? Why not try regarding the additional levels on Northern Junk as the reallocation of the lost building space right next door? It's not nearly so terrifying a prospect if you think of it that way.
During the forthcoming public hearing, council will be under intense public scrutiny. A Vancouver-style approach to high-density-driven development has already transformed Victoria’s eastern skyline. Will it now envelop Old Town?
In the year 2020 we're saying 4-, 5-, and 6-story buildings in the old town = "a Vancouver-style approach"?
An observation by a VV forumer back in January, 2019:
For crying out loud, lowrise buildings with single-digit floor counts were supposed to be holy, back when nobody thought it would ever be viable to build them. But then the real estate situation changed in the 21st century and lowrise buildings became viable again, and what do you know? Lowrise buildings are now "threatening" in the same way that highrise buildings were threatening ~50 years ago.
An observation by a VV forumer back in August, 2018:
I really think the proverbial train might have gone off the rails at some point. Fifty years ago it was the new highrise towers that were the menace. Ten or fifteen years ago it was the new junior highrise buildings that were the menace. Today it's the new lowrise buildings with single-digit floor counts that are the menace
Sidewalking Victoria's response
Reliance Properties heads before Committee of the Whole to seek public hearing support from council.
Victoria council approves affordable condo and rental devs, but sends Northern Junk project back to drawing board
Over 200-units of housing were approved by the City as Northern Junk proposal enters second decade of planning.
Art Deco-styled Victoria office complex sold to Vancouver developer; eyed for restoration, more floors
Completed in 1940, 780 Blanshard Street served as the headquarters for the province's mid-century electrification efforts.
Victoria’s trepidation over bridge land sell-off forces Northern Junk proposal to slim down, nix condos in favour of rentals
Redesign number seven may be the lucky vision for a near decade-long planning process for a harbourfront development site.