A weekly round up of the local news, events, and cultural happenings we’re tracking.
The answer to Vancouver’s real estate crunch might just be the stackable modular house pictured left. The innovative 220 sq. ft. structure, called L41 (a play on “all for one”), was created by architect Michael Katz and designer Janet Corne. It was previously on view on the Concord Pacific site downtown and is now at 550 Great Northern Way. A typical laneway house of 500 sq. ft. seems capacious by comparison. (Globe and Mail)
Gentrification or neglect? A group of Commercial Drive residents hosted a block party in Grandview Park last weekend to express their opposition to aspects of park’s redesign. The $1.5-million project will take a year to complete and the park will be closed to the public during that time. According to Parks Board documents, another group called the Friends of Grandview Park led the redevelopment out of safety concerns for themselves and their kids. So, are The Drive’s sky-high real estate prices taking the proudly bohemian neighbourhood in a new direction? For so many years the neighbourhood lament was that West Side parks and amenities received preferential treatment. Where’s the line between infrastucture upgrades and gentrification? (Vancouver Courier)
Too pretty to be smart? The Canadian Council on Learning released their 2010 Composite Learning Index scores this week and Vancouver… did not fare so well. Among other things, our high-school dropout rate is above the national average, while our “exposure to reading” and “availability of workplace training” is below it. Our composite score was lower than all other major Canadian cities, including Edmonton, Toronto, Ottawa, and Victoria—which topped the rankings with an overall score of 95% (!). We need to turn this ship around. An interactive map with all the scores is here.
How to learn the city’s history in a pinch. Love these “Year in Five Minutes” pieces from re:place magazine that are based on Chuck Davis’ popular History of Vancouver timeline. In the latest installment—1970—there’s a terrific archival picture of Fox & Fluevog Shoes’ old Gastown store. Wonder what happened to that awning? (re:place)
As I post this, we’re in the midst of A Night at MOV with Conor Holler, a live talk show presented by Vancouver is Awesome and hosted in our 200+ seat theatre. Did you attend? We’d love your feedback. Side note: Staff-led tours of Fox, Fluevog & Friends commence June 1 and will be on offer thrice-weekly throughout the exhibition. See our Audience Engagement calendar for up-to-date information. Happy weekend.
Image credit: Simon Scott for The Globe and Mail