darwink

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Is there anything anyone can do to block this? I’ve seen many projects rejected or sent back to the drawing board. How can this be stopped? Email councillors?
City council can vote against. But unless it is against policy, the applicant is likely to win on appeal.

Otherwise the city could designate against the applicants wishes, and expropriate the properties.
 

O-tac

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Actually very much like the municipal building atrium but open air, so imagine this:

View attachment 399456

View attachment 399457

But with a road, and with 2 dimensional historical facades tacked onto the outside.

And something that kind of looks like this on top but with narrower windows.

View attachment 399458

So essentially a 1970s-looking development with heritage art hung up in front.

Hasn't this year been shitty enough already? Can't take any more terrible news. This city takes 1 step forward and 10 steps back.
 

artvandelay

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The sport check has a nice central open stairwell with a skylight and vintage wrought iron balustrade that would be a shame to lose.😢
That part actually is a later addition. The interior of the Clarence Block was gutted and rebuilt in the 70s, however the east and west walls are still the original sandstone. Information here.

On Stephen, the buildings that have the most value interiors-wise are the Tribune Block (Wednesday Room) - municipally designated, Molson's Bank (provincially designated), and the Hardware Building (no designation).

On 7th, all of the buildings are derelict other than the Palomino, the nightclub building, Stuart & Co (the three story red brick building), and the Bible Society - none of which are protected. Interestingly, the northerly 50' of the derelict buildings is municipally protected thanks to the failed robo-parkade project. Unfortunately these buildings are in such poor shape that only the facades and potentially the perimeter masonry walls would be salvageable.
 

JoeUrban

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City council can vote against. But unless it is against policy, the applicant is likely to win on appeal.

Otherwise the city could designate against the applicants wishes, and expropriate the properties.
Thing is half the buildings are already designated, the applicant wants both a zoning change and removal of 5+ designation bylaws. The proposal is essentially illegal unless the applicant gets council and potentially the province to change the laws for them.
 

MichaelS

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City council can vote against. But unless it is against policy, the applicant is likely to win on appeal.

Otherwise the city could designate against the applicants wishes, and expropriate the properties.
You can't appeal a Council decision on land use. It would only be if CPC rejects the development permit, could they appeal. But given that they have submitted a land use redesignation as well, that requires a Council decision, and their decision is final.
 

JoeUrban

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That part actually is a later addition. The interior of the Clarence Block was gutted and rebuilt in the 70s, however the east and west walls are still the original sandstone. Information here.

On Stephen, the buildings that have the most value interiors-wise are the Tribune Block (Wednesday Room) - municipally designated, Molson's Bank (provincially designated), and the Hardware Building (no designation).

On 7th, all of the buildings are derelict other than the Palomino, the nightclub building, Stuart & Co (the three story red brick building), and the Bible Society - none of which are protected. Interestingly, the northerly 50' of the derelict buildings is municipally protected thanks to the failed robo-parkade project. Unfortunately these buildings are in such poor shape that only the facades and potentially the perimeter masonry walls would be salvageable.
A more reasonable approach would be a mix of mostly facadism on the 7th ave side and very little if any destruction on the 8th ave national historic district side other than replacing the Thai restaurant building as an entrance to new builds on 7th Ave.
 

artvandelay

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City council can vote against. But unless it is against policy, the applicant is likely to win on appeal.

Otherwise the city could designate against the applicants wishes, and expropriate the properties.
Wouldn't the fact that this proposal requires repeal of at least two bylaws give the City additional leverage in this case? I'm not very well versed in the machinations of municipal government:

48M2014
11M98

It's obviously in the City's interest to see this project proceed but I think modifications to the design to retain as many of the buildings as possible (in full) would both serve the public interest and ultimately make for a better development.
 

JonnyCanuck

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How can it possibly be inconsequential when they are a few of the last remaining buildings on what was once the major commercial avenue of the city? How can you possibly rationalize demoing historic buildings by using our past approach to heritage preservation (which has gutted our core and replaced it with dog shit buildings) as justification for continuing to demolish our heritage? 7th ave is bland because of bland developers and planners. And we have enough continuity of bland, sterile buildings in this city to last a life time.
So ... investing millions of dollars to save one block of derelict buildings that no one will miss, is going to save the day?
I agree about the sins of the past. The city planning around heritage buildings has been incompetent at best. The pictures that JoeUrban posted earlier ... before and after ... are stark reminders of this. However we can't change the past and fighting a lost cause on 7th Ave, is a waste of time an energy.
 

JoeUrban

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I've long accepted that the 7th Ave strip will get demolished. What I find sad is that there is no attempt to save the facades. The last thing we need is a bland, block long podium like what happened with Eighth Ave Place and the historic facades would help with that.

The Stephan Ave side is amazingly heavy handed. I'm not sure what the site is currently zoned for but heritage preservation (keeping a facade is not preservation) should be a precondition for the amount of density they are seeking. Instead, they seem to be proceeding in spite of heritage preservation. It's kind of a cake and eat it too situation

For those that think a building's condition justifies tearing it down and replacing it with something new and better here are some hard lessons from the past:

View attachment 399700
9th ave in the 60's. A nice character retail street but those hotels became derelict and unsavoury. Every building in this image apart from the Palliser and the Grain Exchange building has since been demolished and replaced with this beautiful character streetscape we have come to love:

View attachment 399702

The Penney Lane mall made way for this lively modern space:
View attachment 399704

View attachment 399705
And hey, we also got a big tall tower out of it to boot!

Calgary's downtown core is generic and stale because of our tendency towards massive "redevelopments" or "revitalization efforts" that have torn down en masse, blocks of discrete, historic, human scale buildings and replaced them with massive block sized buildings with sterile, harsh podiums. Stephan Ave is no exception (i will pull up some photos of what the area around the Municipal Building looked like prior to the last big downtown "revitalization" effort). This development is yet another example of our inability to recognize that a developer who is trying to "maximize the site's potential" is another way of saying "maximize the site's profit for ourselves, while leaving nothing of substance for future generations".
Privatize the profits and socialize the losses, a tale as old as time, and a religion in Calgary.
 

JoeUrban

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I've long accepted that the 7th Ave strip will get demolished. What I find sad is that there is no attempt to save the facades. The last thing we need is a bland, block long podium like what happened with Eighth Ave Place and the historic facades would help with that.

The Stephan Ave side is amazingly heavy handed. I'm not sure what the site is currently zoned for but heritage preservation (keeping a facade is not preservation) should be a precondition for the amount of density they are seeking. Instead, they seem to be proceeding in spite of heritage preservation. It's kind of a cake and eat it too situation

For those that think a building's condition justifies tearing it down and replacing it with something new and better here are some hard lessons from the past:

View attachment 399700
9th ave in the 60's. A nice character retail street but those hotels became derelict and unsavoury. Every building in this image apart from the Palliser and the Grain Exchange building has since been demolished and replaced with this beautiful character streetscape we have come to love:

View attachment 399702

The Penney Lane mall made way for this lively modern space:
View attachment 399704

View attachment 399705
And hey, we also got a big tall tower out of it to boot!

Calgary's downtown core is generic and stale because of our tendency towards massive "redevelopments" or "revitalization efforts" that have torn down en masse, blocks of discrete, historic, human scale buildings and replaced them with massive block sized buildings with sterile, harsh podiums. Stephan Ave is no exception (i will pull up some photos of what the area around the Municipal Building looked like prior to the last big downtown "revitalization" effort). This development is yet another example of our inability to recognize that a developer who is trying to "maximize the site's potential" is another way of saying "maximize the site's profit for ourselves, while leaving nothing of substance for future generations".

Block is demolished and robbed of all activity

"Who cares, there's plenty of blocks left"

Block is demolished and robbed of all activity

"Who cares, there's plenty of blocks left"

Block is demolished and robbed of all activity

"Who cares, there's plenty of blocks left"

Block is demolished and robbed of all activity

"Who cares, there's barely any left and what's left isn't worth saving.
 
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wolvie

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That part actually is a later addition. The interior of the Clarence Block was gutted and rebuilt in the 70s, however the east and west walls are still the original sandstone. Information here.

On Stephen, the buildings that have the most value interiors-wise are the Tribune Block (Wednesday Room) - municipally designated, Molson's Bank (provincially designated), and the Hardware Building (no designation).

On 7th, all of the buildings are derelict other than the Palomino, the nightclub building, Stuart & Co (the three story red brick building), and the Bible Society - none of which are protected. Interestingly, the northerly 50' of the derelict buildings is municipally protected thanks to the failed robo-parkade project. Unfortunately these buildings are in such poor shape that only the facades and potentially the perimeter masonry walls would be salvageable.
thanks for the info artvandelay, it's just that I remember being in this building when I was a kid, before the McNally bookstore & later the Sportchek gutting the place and it filled with smaller shops and the open stairwell with wrought iron railings giving the place a Blade Runnerish, Bradbury building vibe. I loved that as an impressionable kid....
 
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haltcatchfire

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So ... investing millions of dollars to save one block of derelict buildings that no one will miss, is going to save the day?
I agree about the sins of the past. The city planning around heritage buildings has been incompetent at best. The pictures that JoeUrban posted earlier ... before and after ... are stark reminders of this. However we can't change the past and fighting a lost cause on 7th Ave, is a waste of time an energy.

"However we can't change the past and fighting a lost cause on 7th Ave, is a waste of time an energy."

This is the exact perspective that got us to where we are today.
 

JoeUrban

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"However we can't change the past and fighting a lost cause on 7th Ave, is a waste of time an energy."

This is the exact perspective that got us to where we are today.
I think it's important to remember ( or realize) that at one point all of Stephen Avenue was relatively derelict, or at least shabby, and it was a concerted restoration effort to make it the space it is today.
 

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