They came for the surface parking lots. Then they came for the gas stations. Now they’ve come for the parkades.
In truth, developers have been coming for the downtown’s parking structures for some time – like this one at Thurlow and Alberni, as seen on Streetview in 2011:
Parkades (a characteristically Vancouver term, I think) were always ‘Brutalist’ in design: exposed concrete, and not much else. This one was unusual in its street and subsurface retail, including a small performing space that was home to Theatresports. Best of all, it had extensive landscaping on its overhangs that served as awnings – a lush, west-coast style that even, if I remember, included small firs. Then one day, probably because of weight, it was all gone, replaced by the awnings above.