On January 22th the Vancouver Sun published (online) a 1500 word Page Four article by John Mackie called "Old Kingsway Versus New". The inspiration for the piece appears to be Heritage Vancouver's recent addition of Kingsway (the entire 8-mile stretch of it, from 7th and Main in Vancouver to the Burnaby/New Westminster border) to its Top 10 endangered heritage sites.
Nice to see the word "heritage" extend beyond the Edwardian to include semi-feudal, post-war immigrant working class racialized neighbourhoods like Kingsway. Not so nice to see Kingsway once again defined by what it is not, as evidenced by Mackie's don't-think-of-a-purple-pony lede: "Kingsway will never be confused with the Champs Elysees in Paris or Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles." Also, what happened to the Sun's fact checkers? It's New Sam Po Meat & BBQ, not New Samo Meat & BBQ.
SFU's Andy Yan is quoted at length throughout the article. He talks of "the invisible manufacturing that goes on" along Kingsway, particularly in the food industry and "in terms of ... production, distribution and repair elements." And later, how that production is "in danger of being systematically erased," how this "erasure is stemming from its invisibility" (great line!).
Mackie's Strathcona neighbour and Vancouver Councillor Pete Fry concludes the article with his amendment to the recent 1265 Kingsway development proposal that has the new building's retail floor plate sectioned into smaller spaces, as opposed to a single unit. Would that discourage private developers from the common practice of writing off the loss of (deliberately) un-leased premium priced ground level retail spaces for the first three years after the completion of what is largely a market housing project? No. That's another article that is not in any rush to be written, one that begins: "Vancouver will never be mistaken for a city that puts public housing before private profit."