The Downtown Eastside of Vancouver was once the centre of the city, with two of the biggest and best department stores: Woodwards and Eatons.
But in the early 70s Eatons was moved to Granville Street, and in the 90s Woodwards went bankrupt, and since then the area has been troubled.
In 2003 an attempt to revitalize the area was made, with housing and Simon Fraser University’s Downtown campus going in.
A friend who has lived in Vancouver since the 50s wanted to go and see the result so we headed out on a dark rainy November day and found some interesting architecture (and lots of angles).
All that was saved was the W from the Woodwards building, which now acts as a sculpture.
It was replaced by a new energy-efficient W.
The housing unit.
The housing unit from the Arts Atrium.
From Wikipedia: The 400 million dollar, nearly one million square foot project, includes 536 market housing units, 125 singles non-market housing units to be operated by PHS Community Services, 75 family non-market housing units to be operated by Affordable Housing Society, Nesters Market, London Drugs, TD Canada Trust, the National Film Board of Canada and civic offices, a daycare, public atrium and plaza, and a new 130,000 square foot addition to Simon Fraser University’s downtown campus, the SFU School for Contemporary Arts.