So Who Has All The Books?

December 1, 2020

The Vancouver Library system is seeking a budget increase of $625,000 from City Council to offset unpaid fines. There are apparently 70,000 (!) Vancouver residents unable to use the library because they owe $10 or more in fines. The library would like to forgive those fines but need help to do so. And a great many of them are here in Grandview:

The city’s chief librarian, Christina de Castell said:

[P]eople with lower incomes depend on libraries for access to computers to participate in public consultations related to civic affairs. Yet libraries were mostly closed this year during the feedback phase of the city’s 2021 operating budget. “Council may not have heard these voices,” de Castell said.

“Library staff have been hearing about the barriers of fines for many years ever since we started asking why people didn’t use the library.” She heard from community librarians that reasons for inactivity are related to fear that a patron couldn’t afford to pay a fine, if a book or library materials were returned late. “When it’s a choice between $10 for food or rent, or $10 to pay back library fines, it’s not a choice,” de Castell said.

Image: Rope #1

December 1, 2020

Grandview 1st December 1920

December 1, 2020
Vancouver Sun, 19201201, p.13

All previous Grandview 1920 clippings.

Changes On The Drive #112

December 1, 2020

I was fooled yesterday by the bright blue sky and did not dress well enough to counter the bitter wind that blew me up and down the Drive. The walk from Grandview Highway to Venables sometimes seemed like I was crossing Antarctica without a dog sled!

There is a detailed illustrated look at the takeout specialties at Jamjar Canteen, 2290 Commercial in Scout Magazine.

The Social at 1812 Commercial gets a full coverage review at the Daily Hive.

Bar Corso at 1566 Commercial has applied to change the license on their premises from Food Primary to Liquor Primary. This would allow them to extend their liquor serving hours, I believe.

As always, the season really come alive at Commercial & Graveley where the mass of Christmas trees on the roof of Home Hardware spreads its delightful piney smell across the intersection.

The storefront at 1433 Commercial has had the interior refurnished and painted and is now another cell phone store or similar. We seem to have as many of those now as we do cannabis outlets.

The Harbour Oyster Bar at 1408 Commercial gets a long and favourable review in Daily Hive. My understanding is that these folks also own the Social (see above) and I guess it is no coincidence that both restaurants are being covered by the Hive in the same week.

The former Beckwoman’s at 1314 Commercial is still closed but work on what will soon be Rave On, a clothing boutique, is well advanced.

I am now declaring that Renzo’s Cafe at 1301 Commercial is closed. I have heard rumours that the family has no intention to re-open. They are hoping, I am told, to sell the Cafe as a going concern which is why it sits closed but fully furnished. They also own the storefront at 1303 which has effectively been vacant for a long time.

The streetscape at Grandview Park changed literally while I was on my walk as one of the older trees fell over in the wind.

The popular Indian restaurant Sula at 1128 Commercial is preparing to open a second location, this time on Main Street.

I have been concerned about the Kin Kao restaurant at 903 Commercial — they have an imposing sign on the door saying “One Customer Only At A Time”, and they never seem to be open when I pass by. So I was glad to see an ad for Front of House staff the other day.


Vacancies on the Drive this month: 

Depressingly, not a single business opened or re-opened in November so far as I could tell.

2277 Commercial (vacant 17 months), 2223 (21 months), 2111 (7 months), 1875 (3 months), 1814 (7 months), 1752 (10 months), 1748 (4 months), 1740 (16 months), 1733 (2 months), 1728 (8 months), 1678 (3 months), 1608 (11 months), 1314 (6 months), 1305 (8 months), 1303 (2 months), 1301 (1 month), 1206 (2 months), 1003 (9 months), 935 (10 months), 931 (5 months), 902 (2 months).

Interesting discussion on how to make outdoor patios more acceptable in winter: What Outdoor Dining May Look Like in Winter – Bloomberg

Previous Changes On The Drive editions.

Rosa Parks Day

December 1, 2020

Rosa_Parks_BookingIt was sixty-five years ago today that an experienced activist named Rosa Parks chose to say “No” when told to give up her bus seat for a white passenger on a rainy night in Montgomery, Alabama. Later, repeating her refusal to a police officer, she was arrested and became an historical figure.

Not withstanding the scores of millions of volunteer hours that went into the Civil Rights movement, and the billions of words crafted to defend the principles of equality and anti-discrimination, movements are often characterized by individual actions: Rosa Parks refusal being a classic example.

Never underestimate the ability of very small groups of people to start movements that develop into landslides of social change.