Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Banks and Families

Architects Somervell and Putnam designed this Greek temple- style bank for the Union Bank of Canada. However, when it opened in 1920, it was the local head office for the Bank of Toronto.

The Bank of Toronto merged with the Dominion Bank in 1955 and this bank served as the Toronto Dominion Bank's main Vancouver Branch until 1984.

Architect W. Marbury Somervell trained in Paris at the Ecole des Beaux Arts and designed this building in the Italian Second Renaissance style. At that time there were ten other banks on Hastings Street, Vancouver's main business street at the time.

Built in 1911, this simple two - storey gabled Craftsman style house is located at 1386 Thurlow Street. This style was prevalent at the time the home was built and is well suited to climate and geography of the West Coast.

The layout and siting of the house are a direct response to the side slope condition of the site. The entry porch is on the uphill side of the property. From what I read it appears that this home is still a single family dwelling which is rare. Many of the older homes in the city have been divided into rental units.

Like this house, next door at 1390 Thurlow. It was built in the same year, is the same style of home but it has been divided into suites.

This home, though it appears to need some work, is occupied. I met a woman who was cleaning the front unit so that it could be rented out.

I don't know if this place is a heriage building or not. I am showing it to you because of a little story I heard. It is beside the previous two I featured, the heritage homes. At one time it was speculated that the three  buildings were going to be torn down and the property sold so a large development could be put in. But the previous two were designated heritage so it can't be done.  I am curious to see what will happen with all the buildings. A lady I spoke with told me that the interior apartments to this unit are beautiful and spacious with quality hardwood floors. Ideally someone with the monies necessary would take over the properties and restore them to their former glory.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

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