Meeting Notes: April 2018

It was another lively meeting last Thursday, with a wide range of topics discussed.

  • After introductions, Eric took us through a 1967 Beaver Kit houses brochure. The brochure loudly proclaimed the use of Zonolite insulation which, today, is the cause of much asbestos distress for those seeking to renovate their older houses;
  • We discussed the maintenance contract required for the GHG website.  We agreed a further two years with GoDaddy hosting, and we authorized a cheque to repay Penny for the expense.  In two years we will review the hosting situation;
  • We reviewed the plans for Car Free Day in July, and made an early call for volunteers to man the booth;
  • Neville presented an excellent piece of research based on a 1908 panoramic image of Grandview. In the image, it is possible to see the most part of Grandview west of the Drive down to False Creek.  Neville has spent considerable time identifying the houses, and has found water permits for many. It was a very valuable presentation;
  • Neville also presented some research on BC Mills houses including a couple of interesting examples that were moved to Odlum Street in the 1940s;
  • For the trifecta, Neville continued his discussion from last month regarding 1829 Parker. He suggests that the architect was Watson who also designed Wilga.
  • Penny discussed the repairs we are prepared to make to the Shelley’s sign which is now showing serious signs of exposure damage. She and Michael presented a plan for restoration to Via Tevere which they accepted.  The work will take place once the weather turns for the better;
  • Maria presented some suggestions for the Centenary Signs project this year.  She has identified a dozen or more houses in areas we have rarely touched in earlier years. It was agreed that a list will be prepared for a walking tour to make final selections;
  • Eric presented a number of upcoming events including the Heritage Garden Tour, the Grandview Garden Club garden tour, various Heritage Vancouver Foundation events, the Vancouver Labour History tours, and Christine Allen’s lecture for VHS next Thursday;
  • We were joined for much of the evening by James Evans who gave us an update on the Brookhouse development.  We also discussed the possibilities for an HRA at the St. Francis convent property.

 

 

The Drive’s First Ad

This advertisement appeared in the Vancouver World in January 1908. It is the earliest ad I have yet found for any business on Commercial Drive (then known as Park Drive). This pioneering grocery business operated by E.F. Hepper at 1703 Park Drive in 1908 and 1909 and moved across the street to 1742 Park Drive in 1910 where it lasted until the following year.

And they really were pioneers.  I have identified only eleven business that had operated on the Drive by the end of 1908. These included six grocery stores, three hardware stores, one real estate office and a painter/decorator company. Two of the grocers and the realtor had already closed before 1908.

1909 was a slow year for growth but by the end of 1910, the Drive could boast more than 44 businesses.  Perhaps Hepper & Lovelace couldn’t handle that much competition.