There are a number of magnificent heritage buildings in downtown Vancouver, many of which are re-purposed banks.
At the turn of the 1900’s, banks gave their depositors a show of strength by building these monuments. By the end of the 19th century, most of these had been sold off and the banks now rented properties.
Henry Birk’s store was built in 1908 as a show of strength by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. It is located at Granville and West Hastings.
This was originally built as a Toronto-Dominion Bank in 1910. The bank abandoned this location in 1984 and the building became derelict. It was donated to the University in 2000.
Detail of the door on the right in the previous photo.
The former post office is located at the corner of Granville and West Hastings. Construction began in 1905 and the building was completed in 1910. The four clocks in the tower are twelve feet in diameter and were restored in the 1980’s. Similar to the banks, the post office (then ROYAL MAIL) built monuments.
The building was incorporated into the Sinclair Centre, part of a downtown Vancouver shopping centre, which incorporated several other heritage properties.
Vancouver is probably the most beautiful city in Canada. Easily walkable, with lots of neighbourhoods, parks and beaches to occupy your time.
They have demonstrated an interest in preserving heritage properties. I can only hope that this continues as gentrification comes to East Hastings Street.