Archive for April, 2011

Motel continues to work to push aside checkered, unseemly past

Value Lodge owners manage to get property off the city’s nuisance list

Danielle Bell, Daily News

Published: Saturday, April 30, 2011

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Lots on the go!

A couple of agenda items for Wednesdays meeting, thanks to SECA Chair Douglas Hardie.

The Robins Gdns developer is coming to talk about some design changes and up date us on imminent start!  (trees are safe apparently)

Also Nanaimo’s Young Professionals are coming to talk about their collaboration with Brent and Maddy at RU computing to turn the lot on Irwin into a community garden.

The meeting will be held on Wednesday May 4 @ 7 PM.  Princess Royal Centre, corner of Irwin and Farquhar.

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On May 3, 1887  the Nanaimo No.1 Esplanade Mine exploded, one of the biggest accidents in Nanaimo’s history.  On May 7, the citizens of Nanaimo will gather to remember this tragic event.

Operated by the Vancouver Coal Company, the Number One mine opened in 1884 at the foot of Milton Street in Nanaimo. Its shafts and tunnels extended under the harbour to Protection and Newcastle Islands and to the Nanaimo River.

The explosion started deep underground, after explosives were laid improperly. The mine burned for a full day.  Although many miners died instantly, others were trapped by the explosion. These men wrote farewell messages in the dust of their shovels. Nearly 150 children lost their fathers and 46 women became widows.  Only 7 survived.

Amongst those who died were 53 Chinese workers, listed simply in Minister of Mines records by their employee numbers. Those numbers, as well as the names of the workers, are listed on a historical kiosk, which has been recently upgraded and refurbished.

Storytellers at the event include retired journalist and writer Roger Stonebanks, and Muriel MacKay-Ross a native daughter of Nanaimo.

Attendees may wish to bring a single flower to lay at the memorial, to remember the 150 lost miners who didn’t get to see the spring flowers.

The event, which will take place on Saturday May 7th between 1 and 3 PM, will be held at the historical kiosk at the corner of Esplanade and Milton Street.  It will be hosted by the South End Community Association .

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Darrell Bellaart, The Daily News

Published: Friday, April 29, 2011

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By Toby Gorman – Nanaimo News Bulletin

Published: April 27, 2011 10:00 AM
Updated: April 27, 2011 10:48 AM

One of the city’s largest and most complex bylaws could be getting a complete rewrite that, if adopted, will change the face of Nanaimo in the years to come.

Click here for the full article.

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By Chris Bush – Nanaimo News Bulletin
Published: April 28, 2011 8:00 AM
Updated: April 28, 2011 8:07 AM

Brad Smith, manager of the Value Lodge Motel on Nicol Street, got some welcome news in mid-February when he was told the city lifted the motel’s nuisance property designation.

for the complete article, click here.

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This from Rebecca Tubbs from the City of Nanaimo.

What a frabjous idea!  Thanks so much, Rebecca….!


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We’ve been asked about what’s happening at the  corner of Needham and Irwin Streets.  So your intrepid reporter asked the new owners of the lot, Madilyn and Brent from R-U Computing.

Here’s their response:

As you know it is being cleared off and we have been approached by a team of people, the same people who were wanting to do abandoned gas station community gardens’ , and they are going to use the land to do an ‘open style’ (no fences ) community garden.

The man we mainly talked to is Andre Sullivan. We did discuss the team come to the next SECA meeting as they are hoping to have a lot of community support.

From talking to them we understand the project is done through large corporation sponsorship and apparently a landscaper is doing up a plan to make the whole lot esthetically pleasing.

It appears there is more land there than they have raised beds for so our conversation did turn to some potato / carrot crops in the ground and hopefully some donations of fruit trees and likely some raspberries.

Douglas has also mentioned putting in a bench and hopefully some ‘cool’ garbage cans can be placed there.

The hope is that if people are hungry they will eat but not destroy. As it is a ‘community project’ input and help will be welcome.

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Eyleen, the newest Art Bin to grace Nicol street, seen here with her guardian, Neal Brown, outside his store, Arbutus Books.  Eyeleen will be keeping a watchful set of eyes (because she’s got LOTs of them) on the street for litter.  (And she will, be hopefully cheering on Jean Crowder’s campaign workers next door.)

Eyeleen replaces another bin, who unfortunately met his demise at the feet of some vandals and is currently In the Art Bin Hospital, awaiting surgery.  If he doesn’t pull through, a memorial will be held at a later date…:)

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If you’ve been driving down Nicol St, you may have  noticed the demolition of some houses near Farquhar.  Two are down and the third one will be, soon.  Workmen will be clearing and leveling the property to prepare for the construction of a 45 unit apartment building, to be constructed and owned by the current property owner, Paul Saroya.

More info as it unfolds.

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