Mandating Design Guidelines … Should We?

I’m not an architect or a planner but I am a resident who has had the good fortune to live in my Dunbar neighborhood for almost 25 years. We’ve raised our two boys here and we love the area, but I do not like what I see. I’m not talking about the demolition of older single-storey bungalows which are being replaced with larger homes … what I am talking about is the construction building of homes with a design that in no way fit into the character of the neighborhood.

Case in point – an ugly square, bunker-looking home that is being built in the 4000 block of West 33rd Avenue in Vancouver. I pass by it every weekend while walking my dog home from the park and I cringe. I cannot quite get over whatever would possess an architect to design such an ugly home. I am sure former Director of Planning, Brent Toderian was a fine individual but if he is responsible for allowing homes like this to be constructed, then in my opinion he deserved to be dismissed.

I have no problem with the demolition of older bungalows to make way for larger, energy efficient homes. I understand that change happens and we need to densify. What does concern me is the long-term impact these homes of dreadful design will have on protecting the character of our neighborhoods.

Maybe we need to bring in neighborhood design panels that would have the opportunity to see the design of a home and approve before it’s built. What do you think?

Comments

One Response to “Mandating Design Guidelines … Should We?”
  1. Rudy R says:

    Hi Ian,
    My first time on your web site. Agreed on the boxy house on 33rd, but don’t agree on design guidelines for new homes to match existing. I believe in good design, which can include innovative design, or different styles, including contemporary.

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