Author Archives: Frank Murphy

Train Station Restoration Underway

Phase one of the restoration of the E&N Train Station on Selby Street has begun. This is a $2.3 million project the first phase of which will lift the existing building to place it on a proper foundation and complete the framing and excavation work. There is a commercial tenant in place with plans for […]

Email re Port Place Mall to Mayor Ruttan; Council; Planners Swabey, Tucker

Mayor Ruttan Nanaimo City Councillors Director, Planning Andrew Tucker GM, Development Ted Swabey ____________________________ I am an enthusiastic fan of your award winning document Downtown Design Guidelines. (The Planning Institute of BC’s 2009 highest honour) This plan and its guidelines approved and adopted by Council were to serve as a “living” document that was to […]

Design Advisory Panel meeting May 13

A quick update on a couple of things I’m working on: My post of April 26th was a copy of an email to Director of Planning Andrew Tucker cc’d to GM, Development Ted Swabey.  Andrew promptly and in detail answered my questions in regard to the Port Place Mall Development and Rezoning Applications. He pointed […]

The tale of local architect/planner’s pilgrimage to Curitiba, Brazil

There’s a comment from NanaimoCityHall blog reader urbanismo this morning and I’m reposting it here for a number of reasons — not the least of which is that it contains the site’s first Portuguese language message. The message came from the office of the Brazilian architect and planner Jaime Lerner, best known for his innovative […]

Economic Development: where’s the state of the art research?

NanaimoCityHall blog commenter sunnydan points out in response to my cranky letter to the Daily News that in the interest of clarity we should define our terms. Quite right: My definition of economic development goes along these lines: City Hall can and should provide an extremely important service to the city’s and the region’s economic […]

Cranky blogger takes Daily News editorial board to task

email to the Daily News Thurs Apr 29 in response to editorial concerning the departure of the Economic Development Officer… To the editor: When the Daily News editorial board, given the shear mass of grey cells it must contain, offers economic development advice I wonder how its parent company Canwest ever got in such financial difficulty. Did […]

Email to Planners Swabey, Tucker Apr 26 ’09

Andrew and Ted – Can you tell me — or tell me how I can find — the status and the timelines of the Port Place Mall redevelopment? It’s sparking a lot of interest on the new blog NanaimoCityHall. Also, can you tell me if there’s been feedback on the development proposal from Franc D’Ambrosio’s […]

Question to staff through Councillor Kipp Apr 5 ’09

Hi Jim — A quick follow up to our emails re Cable Bay/Oceanview Golf Resort. You’ll have seen this morning’s Globe story Langford’s Bridge to Nowhere: Check out this Globe and Mail article “Financial woes land interchange project in limbo” . Langford Mayor and Council were clearly satisfied that the development would pay for the […]

Could supermarket parking lots become public squares? or be re-designed as great public places in other ways?

From Vancouver’s Wendy Waters’ terrific blog All About Cities. She links to a piece on by Neal Pierce who takes a fresh look at supermarket parking lots, conceived in the post WWII expansion period but now find themselves in a very different world. Take a fresh look at the Port Place Mall redevelopment from […]

Port Place Mall redevelopment

My take: the developer has been given clearance by the Planning Department to entrench a suburban shopping mall in the heart of our city core floating in a sea of parking stalls in return for pretty pictures of medium density urban housing for which there is no market and which the developer is under no obligation to […]