What a glorious day yesterday to take a walk on the Drive. Hot sunshine, smiles on people’s faces, packed patios; hard to beat.
The most important change this month is the fall in the number of vacant or closed storefronts. There are just 7, the lowest number since September 2014. And because we have actually added quite a number of storefronts since that earlier date, this is the lowest percentage of closed stores for an even longer time.
The easiest of the changes on the Drive to see this month are the four crosswalks freshly painted with the colours of the Italian flag. These are the payoff that Fortis (working with the BIA) has offered in exchange for the disruption they caused last year as they upgraded their facilities along First Avenue. In the meanwhile, ten or more local businesses are suing the gas company for loss of revenue during last year’s work. This is the one at 4th Avenue.
Loku Japanese restaurant has now opened at the 2280 storefront in the Marquee.
The double storefronts at 2088 Commercial have been vacant for 16 months, so it is good to see them now open as Grounds For Coffee‘s new location. Apparently famous in Point Grey for their handmade cinnamon buns, this latest in our most recent upsurge of coffee/baked goods establishments, is aiming to make them their marketing difference.
Right next door, at 2080. the Elephant Garden Creamery makes it to Daily Hive’s Must Try Ice Cream list. (Personally, I am amazed and somewhat affronted that they did not include Dolce Amore on their list!)
At 1961 Commercial, the old Coastal Food Market, operating there since 1969, seems to have morphed into ShopRite2:
It was good to see workmen inside 1810 and 1812 but they are, still, closed after 15 months. However, the space at 1706 wasn’t left idle for long; it is now the home of Dive In Desserts. I have a feeling they will do a lot better than the previous tenants.
The previously vacant storefront at 1409 Commercial has been taken over by a Cell Doctor company:
Memphis Blues at 1342 Commercial gets a good mention in Hive’s best nacho spots list.
The Canucks Auction store that has briefly been at 1303 Commercial has moved to 1726 Commercial, an upstairs office, leaving this space vacant once again.
The storefront part of the REACH Clinic at 1151 Commercial is now occupied, on a temporary basis, by the Multicultural Family Centre.
Back in Changes #89 in January this year, I mentioned the confusion over the name of the operation at 1110 Commercial. Finally, we have a Grand Opening of the Pizza Castle & Indian Curry house.
Vacancies on the Drive this month: 2223 Commercial (3 months vacant), 1840 (4 months), 1812 (15 months), 1810 (15 months), 1735 (8 months), 1303 (1 month), 952 (8 months).
Previous editions of Changes On the Drive.