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Mere suggestion of towers in Chinatown brings out the forces

May 12th, 2009 · 38 Comments

Unbeknownst to most of you, there have been a number of workshops and open houses in what’s called Vancouver’s historic areas over the last few weeks to talk about potential height increases for those areas. City staff have asked the public to consider a few options, which they’ve graphically illustrated in a kind of cool slideshow that pictures what would happen if all buildings were allowed to go up a modest amount or a slightly higher amount. One option that’s on the table, as well, is the idea of allowing some towers up to 300 feet to go on four selected sites. And one of the sites on the little city map is at the Chinese Cultural Centre, next to the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Gardens.

Just that option has been enough to get a lot of people in Chinatown riled up, as I’ve noted in my Globe story today. It will be interesting to see what proposals staff bring to council in July, after distilling the public feedback to the various options. It seems likely that at least some kind of modest increase in height limits will be allowed, since people are looking for ways to bring more life back into Chinatown. But those towers? We’ll see.

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