Dunsmuir Street looking westwards

There are a series of undated and uncaptioned views along Dunsmuir Street in the Vancouver Archives. Here’s one, with the Pacific Centre Mall looking shiny and new, and a lot whiter (and less draped in greenery). Today there’s a walkway across the street to the north block of the mall, which was completed in 1990, so that puts the image back to the late 1980s. Across the street is the Standard Life Building from 1977 which we think was designed by McCarter Nairne and Partners, with today’s 888 Dunsmuir from 1991 beyond it. In the before image a much smaller building was on the site; beyond in both images is Park Place, the rose coloured glazed tower built in 1984.

In the foreground on the right was a tired looking two storey building that we think dated from the 1940s or perhaps 1950s. It had replaced the Tunstall Block, and the 1990 mall addition in turn replaced the later building. Today’s Holt Renfrew department store (on the north west corner of the street) has a new façade featuring slumped glass panels, added in 2007 and designed by Janson Goldstein of New York. Beyond is a 1977 office building at 595 Howe, sometimes referenced as the ‘Good Earth Building’, today hidden behind the office tower of the Pacific Centre north block.

Our earlier post (of Park Place) looking in the opposite direction dates from 1986, and we suspect that’s around when this image was also taken. Over the intervening 30 plus years there’s much more green; street trees, rooftop landscaping, and dedicated bike lane markings.

Image source: City of Vancouver Archives CVA 800-5107


Posted December 27, 2018 by ChangingCity in Altered, Downtown

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