Saturday, December 3, 2016
Saving Face > Saving the Facade
Unable to maintain its earthquake-unfriendly May Wah Hotel (home to over 100 elderly residents, most of them women), the Shon Yee Benevolent Association had no choice but to put the building up for sale. Asking price: 11.5 million dollars.
The Vancouver Chinatown Association was interested, and secured a loan from the provincial government to purchase the building towards its preservation as housing and as a cultural artifact. However, when the VCA learned that 5 million dollars in structural upgrades was required (I assume this is what the provincial loan was to offset), it reduced its offer to 8 million and the Shon Yee Benevolent Association said no.
For more on the story it might help to look back in time to comments made by Shon Yee Benevolent Association past president Mike Jang and realtor Erik Kwok in this June 20, 2016 CBC report.