Journal: News & Comment

Thursday, January 26, 2006
# 10:03:00 AM:

Two worthwhile reads

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  • Joel Spolsky: "Indeed, it's surprising just how many of today's devices and gadgets and remote controls have actually made TVs, stoves, and telephones harder to use. Suddenly, bad computer user interface design is seeping into the entire world."

  • Philip Aerts leaves an excellent rant as a comment on Darren Barefoot's and my old posts about ugly parts of Vancouver.

Here's what Philip wrote:

Well for starters, I wanted to comment on the brilliant website ugliest Buildings of Vancouver. If I had my way, here are individual buildings or even streets I would demolish and rebuild in a human-scale pedestrian pleasing manner:

  1. Toronto Dominion Tower (Granville at Georgia sts) Dubbed the black tower and built in 1971. Worst, absolute intimidating tower that needs to be imploded pronto!
  2. Sears (former Eaton's store) Granville at Robson - built in 1971-2 and dubbed by many locals as the urinal for its white tile - like facade this is an abomination of a building in the city centre. City planners ought to be ashamed of themselves that it wasn't imploded years ago.
  3. Scotiabank tower/London Drugs/Vancouver Centre - as every Vancouverite old enough to remember this banal and uninspired tower was the replacement for the Birks Building that stood at this location from 1913-1974. The very thought of Birks being razed and replacing it with this tower that was completed in 1977 is totally absurd.
  4. Harbour Centre - Who cares about a silly revolving restaurant in the year 2006. This unispiring vertical slab of concrete in the sky also completed in 1977 replaced several Edwardian structures along west Hastings that would be designated as heritage buildings today had they not been razed back in the 1970's.
  5. CBC Building - As mentioned by several other architectural critics this building dubbed Brittania Mines South is an intimidating and hideously ugly building especially from its backside. This building should be imploded before 2010 if the City wants to seriously live up to its name Beautiful Vancouver.
  6. The Masonic Building. Enough said.
  7. The Aquatic Centre. Enough said.
  8. Cathedral Place - Vancouverites think of this building as a cheapo knockoff of the former Medical-dental Building that was razed back in 1989. To add insult to injury they donned the building with a faux-copper roof to mimic the Hotel ancouver across the street( how cute) This is insulting to Vancouverites intelligence and to good taste. If I were in charge, I wouldn't hestitate to implode this architectural dogpile and replace it with an EXACT replica of the Medical building JUST TO SAY FUCK OFF TO Paul Merrick.
  9. BC Place - This stadium is a white eleplant now as the land it sits on is too valuable, and will be razed to make way for more condo towers. I never like this stadium because every time rock bands played here, the acoustics of the place were goddawful. I will cheer on when it is razed to the ground.
  10. Most apartment towers in the West End - Most were built in the 1960's and 1970's in drab, uniform, always conforming, and built solely for one purpose= greed. Maximize your profit with a 20 storey apartment rack, when your'e a building owner, they obviously don't give a damn about architectural integrity. Most of these obsolete structures were built to last maximum of 30 years. Their time is up, and most ofthem should be razed.


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