Main Street – 700 block east side

700  blockMain St

In 1918 this stretch of Main Street was photographed presumably for the police parade in the foreground. Fortunately we can also see the buildings in the background. On the corner is a woodframe building; there’s a permit from 1912 for a repair to the store on the northern end of the building; it was designed by John Kemp for William Holden, a significant property holder in the city at the time. In 1918 it was the Dominion Café and minor repairs and alterations were carried out. Having drawn a blank on the origins of the building we’re guessing it may date to the ‘lost permit’ period between 1904 and 1907. That seems likely to be true for the two (now gone) 2-storey buildings – the second one a Pool room in 1918. We haven’t found a permit for these addresses either.

Next door down the street builder and developer D J McPhalen built the narrow 2-storey and basement building which he designed in 1904. Today it’s Radha yoga and the Brickhouse. Next door was the Imperial Theatre which was built in 1912. Beyond that was another 2-storey building that initially had a $2,650 frame store built in 1904 by Peter Tardiff, although this looks to be a more substantial structure. Miss Penhall had H A Hodgson design a $3,000 store in 1913 to the north of that, barely visible in the picture. On the corner at 700 Main Mr. McPhalen built a rooming house – which it still is today, over the renovated London pub. It cost $35,000 in 1910 and was designed by W F Gardiner. It replaced (or added to) a brick store that Mr. McPhalen had built here in 1903.

A few years ago ‘Ginger’ a condo building with coloured balconies, replaced the Imperial Theatre. Another project is planned to fill the corner lot; both the McPhalen building and the rooming house would be replaced.

Image source: City of Vancouver Archives CVA 99-1269


Posted October 6, 2014 by ChangingCity in East End, Gone, Still Standing

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