Programs

June 2011

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Posted by: Erin Brown John on June 27, 2011 at 3:06 pm

Post-riot therapy. Scout lists 101 awesome things about Vancouver. Glad to see we (and this blog) made the list!

Riot. An independent review of the police response to the riot is underway. The Vancouver Police Department has released a fact sheet.

The backlash continues. Employers of outed rioters are facing boycotts and negative press and in some cases are letting those employees go. Blenz has launched the first major lawsuit against as yet unnamed rioters.

The backlash highlights lines of cultural divide and prejudice between the city and suburbs. A lot of the blame for the riot has been leveled at the suburbs, but many suburbanites are disputing th

There is growing concern that some riot photos submitted to police have been photoshopped, and it's likely that this will be a popular defence in court.

Rebranding. In light of recent marketing campaigns by Vancouver and Calgary, how does a city go about changing it's image?

Gentrification. The Dependent looks at some of the people walking the fine line between gentrification and revitalization in Gastown and the Downtown East Side.

Language. There is now a dictionary for the Squamish language.

Local food. Turning a new page in the local food movement, the City of Vancouver funds a project to encourage people to replace their lawns with wheat.

Summer of our discontent. Past Tense remembers Vancouver's Yippie civil unrest.

Authentic sky. Appreciation for a local artist who paints Vancouver's sky like it is: usually cloudy.

An oddity from the history books: Police conclude that sounds of a man drowning that had been frightening visitors at Third Beach were actually coming from a bird.

Image via Past Tense.

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Posted by: Erin Brown John on June 21, 2011 at 4:47 pm

What a week! In a few short days we have been witness to everything that is good and bad about this city. There's been no shortage of news and commentary about the riot on and it's near-impossible to summarize. So this week, a few things to think about.

Brave people who do the right thing. Like these people who formed a human chain in front of a store to prevent it from being looted. Or this man who took a beating for his efforts, and the people who dragged him to safety.

The role of social media in all this. A social media riot made for TV. A tale of two riots.

Clean up. Recognize all the great work of volunteers, police and civil workers in putting the city back together.

Grief, gratitude and apology. Many Vancouverites gratitude for police. Plywood covering smashed out windows at the Bay and BMO Bank were covered with messages of apology, support for the team, police and volunteers, and condemnation of the riots. The apology wall at the Bay has since come down, but can be viewed in it's entirety here.

Parts of the wall will be stored permanently here at the Museum of Vancouver for future Vancouverites to see.

In other news:

Only Seafoods. The Only Seafoods returns! The newly renovated restaurant will be operated by the Portland Hotel Society and will feature the restaurant's original menu.

Architects. Cornelia Hahn Oberlander was recognized this week for her 60 year career in landscape architecture and Vancouver Magazine profiles Gregory Henriquez.

Cambie corridor. The BC Court of Appeal upheld the class action suit by Cambie Street merchants about Canada Line construction.

Community gardens. Inside Vancouver visits the community garden on the lawn at City Hall.

Multiple kite world champion. Open File visits one of the most dedicated kite fliers on the lawn outside the museum at Vanier Park. He makes kites do some pretty amazing things.

Image: Erin Brown-John

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Posted by: Erin Brown John on June 13, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Fire. This day in 1886 a massive fire swept through Vancouver, destroying the city and taking 20 lives.

Team colours. A social media uproar resulted in the banning of the display of the Boston Bruins logo on City vehicles.

Canucks on Georgia. Gordon Price recalls that even a few years ago shutting down a major artery for hockey fans would have been totally unheard of.

High rents. The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation released a report this week that named Vancouver the city with the highest average rents in the country.

Life and death.  The hospice at UBC will be going ahead in spite of the concerns of nearby residents and will provide important research opportunities in palliative care.

Little Mountain. The redevelopment of Little Mountain Housing Co-op has stalled. In 2008 the housing development was cleared in anticipation that a larger social housing development would be created. But after three years with no construction in sight, people are wondering why there was a rush to vacate in the first place.

Save-On-Meats. Save-On-Meats is set to open within the next two weeks.

Image: Winston Wong via flickr.

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Posted by: Erin Brown John on June 6, 2011 at 3:26 pm

Hockey. The Vancouver Archives posted a neat photoset of historical hockey photos and Vancouver’s previous team to win the Stanley Cup: the Millionaires.

Public celebrations. Vancouver suburbs are experiencing challenges finding and creating public spaces for celebrating Stanley Cup games. With an eye to public space, are championship runs good for urbanism?

Online voting. The provincial government has denied the City of Vancouver’s request to allow online voting in this year’s municipal election.

FOI. A recent response to a freedom of information request reveals some negative attitudes towards journalists requests. Frances Bula weighs in with her experience contacting City staff.

Residential conversions. The real-estate market is so hot it’s pricing a lot of businesses and jobs out of Vancouver as land is converted to residential development. The latest losses - Avalon Dairy and the Hollywood Theatre and more industrial land.

Housing affordability. Here is the data that Bob Rennie was relying upon when last week he claimed that housing is not unaffordable in Vancouver, so you can draw your own conclusions.

Density. How do we go about densifying development around transit hubs? If we use the intersection at Broadway and Commercial as an example, it turns out there are lots of barriers.

Planning. What if we choose not to plan our urban spaces, let nature take it’s course and crowdsource solutions?

On Broadway. Stephen Rees provides a good overview of SFU City Programme’s Designing Broadway dialogue on May 30.

Safe injection. Another point in favour of Insite: a study shows that a similar facility in Montreal has not had any adverse effects on the neighbourhood it’s located in.

This week’s image courtesy of the Vancouver Archives.