The proposed design plan for the Vancouver Art Gallery’s West Georgia Plaza has been released and some are saying its boring and ugly.
The architect behind the design says creating an open space was crucial in the making of the design, and while no one would argue it’s not an improvement over the barnyard bark mulch that the city has employed since the Occupy protests in 2011, it’s basically just a concrete plaza.
The new plaza would also see the removal of the fountain, no grass or “soft surfaces’, removal of old trees, and a space that prioritizes large assemblies rather than a daily-use gathering place for those who live and work in the downtown core.
The city identified 8 design objectives:
1. Create a space which has the flexibility and resiliency to accommodate overlapping activities, everyday casual uses, and ceremonial events.
2. Be a symbolic and physical centre of the City; respond to the square’s role in the larger City, and as part of the Georgia Street ceremonial corridor.
3. Complete Robson Square by resolving larger urban design moves through Block 51 – landing on Georgia Street, as the natural fulfillment of the public space complex.
4. Address the formal façade of the historic courthouse building and the larger urban room.
5. Encourage use of the plaza as a natural pass – through space connecting major destinations in downtown Vancouver
6. Create a place which is a magnet, inviting people to enter, and providing enough interest and delight to make them want to spend time there.
7. Define the smaller spaces required to create comfort and refuge for everyday use by individuals and small groups.
8. Provide the functional infrastructure needed for large events and everyday use.
Detailed information on the proposal can be found here.
Community Open House
- November 26th, 5 – 8pm
- 800 Robson Street – UBC (the entrance next to the skating rink)
- Written submissions on the proposal can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org and/or Troy Tenney, City of Vancouver 453 West 12th Avenue, V5Y 1V4.