Frances Bula header image 2

More change coming to Chinatown: development sites for sale, sky-high residential rents

August 12th, 2016 · 4 Comments

A sharp observer alerted me yesterday to more signs of change in Chinatown: two key sites (the venerable Tosi’s at 624 Main and the Brickhouse/empty lot/student hostel/Jimi Hendrix shrine assembly at Main and Union) for sale and a new rental building with rents starting at $1,267 for studios.

My story on that here, complete with a chance to observe a slice of life at Tosi’s yesterday afternoon.

But more to do on the changes in Chinatown in the future. Chinatowns everywhere are struggling to figure out how to thrive. There have even been stories from San Francisco, a Chinatown that I thought was among the healthiest, about the proliferation of vacancies.

On another front, one thing I didn’t get an answer on from the city by deadline is how the new Albert Block can charge so much in rent. It was approved under the Rental 100 policy. According to that policy, the rent on an eastside studio can’t be more than $1,260.

At any rate, for those of you who love Tosi’s, Angelo figures he’ll still be operating for about another year at least. (That seems right, as any buyer would likely want to apply to rezone for the higher density and that will take some time.)

So it’s a good time to hop on down with some cash to get your Italian cooking supplies. He had an excellent caciocavallo cheese yesterday, something I’ve never even heard of before.

BTW, to get more about the history of Tosi’s, read my Vancouver Sun pal John Mackie’s excellent story from 2011.

For those wondering, there is no heritage designation for the Tosi’s building. I checked that with the city.

Categories: Uncategorized