Category: Heritage buildings

The Brutal Murder of Vancouver Poet Pat Lowther

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Pat Lowther died on September 24, 1975, her head smashed in with a hammer at her East Vancouver home. This is a short excerpt from At Home with History: the secrets of Greater Vancouver’s Heritage Houses.

The mustard-coloured house where Pat and Roy Lowther lived on East 46th Avenue near the cemetery, is a three-storey, classic kit home with a welcoming front porch and stained glass on the front door.

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Victory Square: what was there before?

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Before Victory Square was Victory Square and home to the Cenotaph, it was a happening part of the city known as Government Square, because it was the site of the first provincial courthouse.

The impressive domed building was operational by 1890 and was the first major building outside of Gastown. It was quickly apparent that it was too small for our growing city, and within a few years had a large addition with a grand staircase and portico facing Hastings Street.

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The PNE: Party Like it’s 1957

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The last time I went to the Pacific National Exhibition was about a decade ago when my kids were still small. I’m guessing it hasn’t changed all that much. But I bet 60 years ago it was a whole different story.

Take the prize home for instance. This year’s house is valued at $1.6 million.

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The Buntzen Power Stations on Indian Arm

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A couple of weeks ago, I took a boat ride up Indian Arm with Belcarra Mayor Ralph Drew and the Deep Cove Heritage Society. It’s hard to imagine that over a century ago Indian Arm was thriving and serviced by sternwheelers, a floating post office and grocery store.

The highlight for me was finally seeing the Wigwam Inn, but almost as exciting were the two massive power stations that dominate the eastern shore at Buntzen Bay.

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The Navvy Jack House: Past, Present and Future

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Jane Williams kindly gave me a tour of her parent’s house at 1768 Argyle Avenue last week. Her father, Lloyd Williams died in April at the age of 96, and she was getting ready to hand the keys over to the District of West Vancouver. Lloyd and Jane’s mother Bette paid $50,000 for the house in 1971, before the seawall was installed and when the next-door John Lawson Park was still a field with a few scattered houses.

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Chesterfield House

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If you live in North Vancouver you may have noticed the old Tudor-style house at Chesterfield and Osborne in the upper Lonsdale Area.

It’s hard to see these days, because several years ago we allowed developers to build two large “carriage” houses, in what was once a magnificent garden filled with hollies, laburnums, cedars, black walnuts, a cherry tree, a rose garden, and a large rhododendron.

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