29 September 2007


Downtown Victoria is changing

My family and I are in Victoria, B.C., where we often go on mini-vacations. There has been a remarkable sprouting of condominium towers downtown in the past year—the place has changed quite a bit in a way it hasn't done for a few decades, at least since the first high-rise office and apartment towers appeared here in the '60s and '70s.

We actually got lost on the way to our hotel because we didn't recognize some of the streets we'd been down dozens of times before, and part of the southward view of the Olympic Mountains in Washington from our eighth-floor suite has been blocked by a new tower built next door.

I'm not complaining—it's just surprising. Until recently, Victoria seemed to have eschewed (or avoided) the condo-tower mania of Vancouver, which has completely transformed that city's downtown (and my own neighbourhood in Burnaby) over the past 20 years.

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