It was a pleasant day for walking yesterday and it seemed like the Drive was back to its pre-virus self — on the outside at least, though going into shops and restaurants is still a matter of getting used to new rules.
The recently-vacated space at 2770 Commercial has been taken by a new restaurant called B House.
The large double-front at 2137, which used to be a cannabis dispensary, is still vacant, but some serious work seems to be going on in there, including painting the exterior brick white.
The Cannibal Cafe at 1818 Commercial has been approved for a temporary patio. They also seem to be involved in the new place next door at 1816 called Mothercluckers Fried Chicken which is still being shop-fitted.
The space at 1608 Commercial, which used to be the Libra Room, is still closed but it is now boarded over and work seems to be going on inside.
Bar Corso at 1566 Commercial seems to be open, which is good to see.
The Charlatan bar at 1447 Commercial is on the list of the first dozen restaurants in Vancouver to get swift approval for extended patios. Odd, because they already have a renovated patio all along Grant Street.
The fairly recent Hina Ramen at 1431 has morphed into Viet Family Restaurant. Next door at 1433, the Donair Town has closed and a “for lease” sign graces the window,
At 1314 Commercial, the venerable Beckwoman store has shut down after some difficult years. Barbara Beckman opened her “Storefront Art Studio” at 1319 Commercial in 1981. She moved across the street to 1314 in 1989 and has been in business there ever since. In the spring of 2015 she suffered a serious fire in the store and it has been closed as often as open since then. The storefront is being stripped and refitted as a fashion boutique, perhaps? Thanks to Penny for the photograph.
Fets Whiskey Bar has re-opened at 1230 Commercial which is great news. I understand they spent their virus downtime renovating the kitchen.
The pop-up boutique at 1206 Commercial is closed, but it is hard to tell if they are vacant as they have had periods of closure before. I’ll give them another month before adding them to the vacancy list.
The Lunch Lady at 1046 Commercial will be opening today, July 1st, after a complete remodelling. There is a good piece on their story at Scout Magazine.
The places I thought should have been open by now, but are not, are Renzo’s Cafe at 1301 and Penelope’s at 1009 Commercial. Both have window signs saying they will reopen when they can, so I guess we just wait and see.
There is an interesting piece in the Vancouver Sun about why some of the places on the Drive have closed. It is fascinating to read Federico Fuoco blame everyone but himself for his failure.
Vacancies on the Drive this month: Listings in bold are those businesses that have announced their closure this month.
2277 Commercial (vacant 12 months), 2233 (16 months), 2137 (5 months), 2111 (2 months), 1875 (2 months), 1851 (2 months), 1816 (2 months), 1752 (5 months), 1740 (11 months), 1728 (3 months), 1608 (6 months), 1433 (1 month), 1319 (2 months), 1312 (1 month), 1305 (3 months), 1303 (9 months), 1027 (2 months), 1012 (9 months), 1003 (5 months), 935 (5 months).
Previous Changes On The Drive editions.
It is not quite six and I just watched an older crow go up and down the back lane lane on the Hydro lines, cawing vigorously and loudly, stopping close to each tree in turn.
Like a crow wake-up man.
Millions upon millions of taxpayer dollars will be spent celebrating — virtually — the 153rd birthday of Canada. While I love this country and am proud to be a Canadian, it is simply nonsense to suggest — as this “birthday” suggests — that the ten thousand plus years of history of occupation of the land we call Canada somehow doesn’t exist or, perhaps even worse, is less important than the 150 years of white Canada that followed.
Most of the last 150 years have been filled with paternalistic and often violent colonialism directed at the people who lived here and created successful societies for more than ten thousand years. Even today, as we spend millions of dollars virtually patting ourselves on the back, hundreds and hundreds of First Nations’ communities are forced to survive without clean water.
We are resourceful Canadians: we can have ourselves a great time without the government expending all this treasure. We would truly have shown ourselves to be a great country if we had devoted that money (and much more) to cleaning up the mess we have created for the original peoples of this territory.