For millennia, three Coast Salish First Nations - the XwMuthkwium (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and Tsleil-Waututh - exercised overlapping traditional rights to the land along the Burrard Inlet. After the nearby Hastings Lumber Mill opened in 1865, Strathcona developed into a working class neighbourhood that was home to successive waves of immigrants. In the 1950s, urban planners declared it a slum and set in motion plans for the demolition of homes to clear the way for housing projects and a freeway. But local residents organized and ultimately prevailed. Strathcona has continued to flourish as a diverse and lively urban village that combines a strong sense of community with close proximity to city amenities.
To Build a Better City (1964 video about the plan to demolish Strathcona)
Captain Edward Stamp establishes Hastings Mill (originally the Vancouver Island Spar, Lumber & Sawmill Co.) in 1865 near the foot of present day Dunlevy Avenue. The location has been used for centuries as a seasonal aboriginal camp site called Kumkumalay, which means "big leaf maple trees".
On July 1st the Dominion of Canada is born. Armed with a barrel of whiskey and a sly tongue Hull, Yorkshire-born retired riverboat captain John “Gassy Jack” Deighton arrives on the south shore of Burrard Inlet intent on opening a saloon just west of Stamp’s Mill. Deighton’s whiskey and smooth talking manner so moves the thirsty mill hands that Deighton House is built through their volunteer labour and open to the public in twenty-four hours. A small squatter community sprouts up around the saloon.
Gastown is officially incorporated as Granville Townsite on March 1st 1870.
British Columbia enters Confederation on July 19, 1871. Canada promises to take on the colony’s debt and to link British Columbia to the rest of Canada through the creation of a transcontinental railroad within ten years.
Vancouver’s first school, a single-roomed affair, opens on February 12, 1873 at Hastings Mill.
On May 29 Gassy Jack Deighton dies in New Westminster. He is forty-four. His last words are, “Damn that dog. I wish he’d shut up.”
St. James Anglican Church is established on a site on the Burrard Inlet waterfront.
On April 6, 1886 an act to incorporate the city of Vancouver is given Royal Assent by Lieutenant-Governor Cornwall.
Not even a year old, the entire city of Vancouver was destroyed in the Great Vancouver Fire of June 13th. Twenty people die. The fire causes an estimated $800,000 damage.
On July 16th there is another fire in Vancouver but another conflagration is averted.
May 1887, Vancouver’s first union is created with the formation of Local 226 of the International Typographical Union. The same month, the first CPR passenger train arrives in Vancouver. Vancouver’s first “boom” lasts from 1887 to 1892.
Dupont Street east of Westminster Avenue (Main Street) is renamed Princess Street in order to placate the residents of the residential street east of Westminster Avenue who didn't want to be associated with the "goings on" in the Red Light District and Chinatown in the Unit and 100-block of Dupont. The Canadian Pacific Railway opens the first Hotel Vancouver at the corner of Granville and Georgia.
Ontario-born carpenter Charles C. Park builds a house at 668 East Hastings. In 1931, Italian-born hotelier Samuel Plastino moves the house to 817 Heatley when he builds the Heatley Block. Rudyard Kipling visits Vancouver and finds it, “not very gorgeous.” The Westminster Avenue (Main Street) swing bridge across False Creek opens for traffic.
On June 26, with hundreds of curious onlookers crowding the sidewalks, motorman Aubrey Elliott and conductor Dugald Carmichael take Car 14 out of the car house on Barnard Street (now Union Street) and down Westminster Avenue (now Main Street) on a trial run. Two days later, the entire system, all 9.6 kilometres of it, opens for regular service at five cents a ride.
Lord Strathcona School is founded. The same year, B.S. Wood applies for water service for a new house he is building at 209 Barnard Street. The house's first resident is a New Brunswick-born dressmaker named Marion Myles. In 1948, Robert a. moore and his wife Viva buy the house and turn it into Vie's Chicken & Steak House, an East End icon that will stay in business at that location until the late 1970s.
English-born butcher Thomas Williams begins to build his house at 775 East Pender. He and his wife Amelia live in the house for over a decade. Sometime later in the house's history an owner covers up the beautiful Victorian rosette-covered carved gable decorations. These remain hidden until rediscovered by the current owner just a few years ago. The BC Sugar Refining Company is established in Vancouver. In return for fifteen tax-free years and ten years of free water from the city, owner B.T. Rogers promises to hire only white labour. Hastings Street becomes Vancouver’s first paved street. The population of Vancouver is 15,000. The great depression of the 1890s begins this year.
Pattern maker Alf Mattinson builds a house at 800 Keefer. From 1935 to 1955 this building is used to house the Montreal Bakery run by Lucien and Cecilia Zanon. Also in this year the original small Lutheran Church at Prior and Jackson is built to serve the Norwegian and Swedish communities. This year is the height of the 1890s depression. Houses all over Vancouver are boarded up as the population drops. By the spring of 1894 churches all through town are feeding hundreds at soup kitchens.
1896 is the year of the Klondyke gold-strike. The Klondyke gold rush brings a population increase as it temporarily makes a mining outfitting town of Vancouver and helps it recover from the depression of the 1890s.
Vancouver begins to recover from the effects of the depression as the Klondyke gold rush continues.
Retired rocky mountain guide and outfitter William Cameron McCord builds a house at 676 East Hastings during the ehight of the Klondike Gold rush. This house is later moved to 407 Heatley Street in 1931 when Italian hotelier Samuel Plastino builds the Heatley block.
The Union Steamships Company is founded July 1st and incorporated on November 16. New Brunswick born contractor and builder of Vancouver's first City Hall in the 300-block of Powell Street Frederick William Sentell builds a house on the NE corner of Prior and Dunlevy.
Vancouver’s population is 27,000.
The Carnegie Library is built at the corner of Hastings and Main with a $50,000 donation by steel magnate Andrew Carnegie. With the exception of the police station and court complexes it is the last major civic building to be built in the old eastern downtown centre. Strathcona School Principal Gregory Tom has a house built for him at 602 Keefer. One can imagine that Tom had the turreted bay window so positioned as to better keep an eye on his charges across the street.
The house at 800 Jackson is built by English-born carpenter Leonard Sankey. From 1926 to 1928 the house is used by the Canadian Jewish Council of Women who provided a variety of social services in the neighbourhood. Then from 1931 to 193, it as June's Chili Parlour. Then from 1936 to 1945 it was the home of Shou Woo, the principal of the Chinese Public School at 529 Gore. Then from 1956 to 1958 it was the home of professional wrestler George Pavich. After several boom years Vancouver goes through a small recession.
Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church is established in what was originally a Protestant Church on the corner of Campbell Avenue and Keefer Street.
Quebec-born carpenter John McMeekin builds a new house for himself at 658 Keefer Street. From 1938 to 1958 the house is home to the Minichiello family. Joseph Minichiello is the proprietor of the Dodson Hotel Shoe Shine. Then from 1959 onwards, the house is home to Mary Lee chan and her daughter Shirley, two key people who spearheaded the fight to save the East End from demolition in the 1960s.
The Jewish community of Vancouver establishes the Sons of Israel Congregation and meets in rented halls until a small Synagogue can be built in the 500 block of Heatley around 1910. On September 7, 1907 Vancouver’s largest race riot occurs after the Asiatic Exclusion League incites a crowd of 15,000 to attack Chinatown. Windows are smashed, stores looted, and many Chinese people are beaten. After venting their fury on Chinatown, the crowd heads to Powell Street to attack Japantown. However the Japanese community is forewarned and arms themselves and the crowd is beaten back.
Peter Tosi establishes a butcher shop at 550 Union Street. Tosi's Italian Food Import Company is still in business today, but at a new location at 624 Main Street. After the race riots of 1907 the Hayashi-Lemieux so-called "Gentlemen's Agreement" restricts Japanese immigration to Canada to 400 male immigrants and domestic servants per year, plus returning immigrants and their immediate family. This is later amended in 1928 reducing the annual number to 150.
1910 is a boom year for Vancouver. Vancouver’s population grows to 93,700 (this does not include South Vancouver and Point Grey). Famed Russian ballerina Pavlova performs at the Empress Theatre at Gore and Main. In late 1910 married women are finally granted the vote in civic elections. Voting age was 21. You needed to own property in the city to qualify. In the 1910s shipbuilding is Vancouver’s largest industry. On November 14, 1910 the Norwegian community applies for a building permit to construct a new, enlarged Norwegian Lutheran Church at Jackson and Prior. Estimated cost to build the church is $2500.
Ross and Zenora Henrix, Jimi Hendrix's grandparents move to Canada from Tennesee. Their first home is in the 700 block of East Pender. Barnard Street is renamed Union Street because Barnard sounds too much like Burrard Street in the West End. The same year, Carl Avenue is renamed Princess Avenue. Vancouver’s boundary moves east to its present location at Boundary Road when it absorbs the Hastings Townsite and District Lot 301. Vancouver’s population is 100,000.
By 1912 there were 12,000 telephones, 52 churches, and 13 consular offices in Vancouver. There were also three real estate offices for every grocery store.
May 23, 1914 the Komagata Maru enters Vancouver harbour filled with would-be South Asian immigrants. These people were forbidden to disembark and the Komagata Maru and its unwanted human cargo are forced to leave Vancouver harbour on July 23, 1914.
August 4, 1914 Canada declares war on Germany. So many Vancouver men enlist that the population drops by 30,000. Over half of those who leave are wounded or killed. During the war a total of 55,000 men leave BC to fight.
The Canadian Pacific Railway comes to Vancouver. CN and the Great Northern Pacific Railway fill in the eastern one third of False Creek for switchyards, depots, and terminals. Harris Street is renamed to East Georgia after the completion of the first Georgia Viaduct. The viaduct was opened on Dominion Day of that year. From 1915 to February 13, 1926, there was streetcar service on East Georgia between Main and Victoria Street.
A young immigrant from Abruzzo, Italy named Alfonzo Benedetti buys out his East End ice cream parlour partners and opens Benny's Market at 598 Union Street. Vancouver’s first WW1 shipbuilding contract heralds the beginning of a wartime economic boom. Women are needed in the labour force and begin to take over traditionally male jobs becoming typists, stenographers, bank clerks, gas station attendants and munitions workers.
The Sons of Israel Congregation reaches 150 families and renames their synagogue Schara Tsedeck, or "Gates of Righteousness". In June 1917 the BCER goes on strike. In the same year, Vancouver Police Chief, Malcolm MacLennan is killed attempting to arrest Bob Tait at 522 East Georgia. The four hour-long gun battle and subsequent news coverage adds to the East End’s aura of danger and unsavouryness. Also in 1917 the BC Women’s Suffrage Act is passed. On December 20, 1917, the BC Prohibitions Act is passed, limiting alcohol purchases to two percent “bear beer” and doctors’ prescriptions. Also in this year there were several strikes by boilermakers, sugar refinery employees, shipyard workers and civic workers.
The world is in the grip of a horrible influenza epidemic that kills thousands. Hundreds die in Vancouver. Rosa Pryor remembers seeing the bodies stacked under a tarp in the alleyway north of the undertaker’s home on Heatley and Pender.
The Japanese-Canadian War Memorial was built near Lumberman’s Arch.
The newly expanded Schara Tesdeck Synagogue is completed at Heately and Pender with a seating capacity of 600 people. Pictured right: Schara Tsedeck Synagogue Dominion photo VPL #21064
On January 1st Vancouver traffic changes from the left to the right side of the street. Doors of all streetcars have to be converted to let passengers board from the right. The same year the East End's black Community buys the Norwegian Lutheran Church at Jackson and Prior and renames is the African Methodist Episcopal Church Fountain Chapel. It will remain the spiritual heart of Hogan's Alley until 1988 when the building is bought by Hakka Chinese Lutherans.
The government of Canada passes the Chinese Exclusion Act. Only teachers, church personnel and consular staff are allowed in. Pictured right: 1919 Head Tax Certificate - Collections Canada
Street Car service along East Georgia ends.
January 1st Vancouver amalgamates with the municipalities of South Vancouver and Point Grey. Vancouver’s area expands from 16.5 square miles to 43.7 square miles. The population grows from 149,000 to 228,000 making Vancouver the 3rd largest city in Canada.
1929-1939 is the Great Depression. At the time of the Wall Street Crash there were an estimated 80 millionaires in the city. After 1929, Vancouver's warm climate and location at the western end of the transcontinental railway help to make it the "Hobo Capital of Canada." The destitute set up shantytowns under the concrete Georgia Viaduct and along the False Creek flats. During this period many unemployed single men are sent to work camps in the BC Interior. Pictured right: Rev. Andrew Roddan (left) from the First United Church visiting hobo jungle on the False Creek Flats, 1931 CVA Photo Re P.13
In 1930, the oldest building in Vancouver, the original Hastings (Stamps) Sawmill building is floated by barge from its original location at the foot of Heatley to its current location in Pioneer Park at the foot of Alma. There, the Native Daughters of British Columbia open the old sawmill building as a museum.
Vancouver’s first city zoning bylaw zones Strathcona from Dunlevy to Clark as six-storey industrial. Kits Pool opens. Italian-born hotelier Samuel Plastino builds the Heatley Block for $9000 at Heatley and East Hastings. Before he builds the two storey wood frame retail and apartment block he moves two old houses that stood on the site facing East Hastings to the south end of the lots they were in so that they faced on Heatley Street.
The 1932 directory shows four of the five retail outlets in the newly built Heatley block occupied. Miss Vera E. Jones runs a drug store at 696 East Hastings. Hugh McAninch runs the Heatley Market at 692 East Hastings. G. L. Antilla and J. Matilla run the Hastings Bakery at 688 East Hastings, and Mrs. Ena Laitenan runs the Hastings Millinery. The same year Saverio "Samuel" and Artemisia Minichiello, the owners of the Union Grocery at 567 Union and of three houses on the east side of the 700-block of Princess Street, move 745 Princess across the street and around the corner to 564 Union to help out Peter Battistoni, owner of the Venice Bakery. 741 Princess is moved to the corner to replace 745 Princess
In this year, the height of the depression, entire families are evicted from rental homes and rooming houses. In May of 1933, the average rent per week was $5.63 and the cost of living was calculated as $15.16 for a family of five. In May of 1933 the city of Vancouver distributes seeds to needy families and invites them to plant gardens on city-owned land. 1933 is the first year that spouse’s names are included in the city directories, usually in brackets. Before, only women who had jobs outside the home were included.
During a longshoreman’s strike there was a battle between strikers and police near the Strathcona School Grounds. By a vote of two to one, electors of Vancouver decide that the city council in future will be elected at large, eliminating the city’s ward system. At the same time, by a vote of nearly four to one, voters decide to reduce the number of aldermen from twelve to eight.
A group of local female aviators inspired by Amelia Earhart form a group called "The Flying Seven." One of their members, Tosca Trasolini, grew up in the 400 block of Union Street. In 1936, the Flying Seven conduct Vancouver's first fly-over. During the fly-over, the seven women, each of whom had their own airplane, alternated their flights, keeping an airplane aloft over Vancouver from dawn to dusk as a demonstration of air defense.
By 1937 half of the 1458 students at Strathcona School are Japanese.
Vancouver is the scene of unemployed worker demonstrations and riots. Leading up to the riots, the Post Office and Art Gallery are occupied by the unemployed for weeks. The Carnegie Library is also occupied. On April 18, 1938, the new Saint James Anglican Church at Gore and Cordova, designed by Sharp & Thompson, is consecrated.
The Empress Theatre at Gore and Hastings is torn down. On August 7, the Unemployment Insurance Act is given Royal Assent. Canada becomes the last western industrialized nation to have unemployment insurance.
Japanese-born Canadians are excluded from military service. By March 4, all Japanese Canadians are required to be registered. By August 12, Japanese Canadians are required to carry registration cards that have their thumbprint and photo. On December 7, Japan attacks Pearl Harbour. The following day Canada declares war on Japan. In the process 1,200 Japanese-Canadian fishing boats are impounded and Japanese vernacular newspapers and schools are closed.
On January 16, 1942 removal begins of Japanese immigrant males from coastal areas of British Columbia. By February 24, all male Japanese Canadian citizens between the ages of 18 and 45 are ordered removed from a 100-mile-wide zone along British Columbia. On February 26, mass evacuation of Japanese Canadians begins. Some are given only 24 hours notice. Cars, cameras and radios are confiscated for protective measures. A curfew is imposed. On March 4 Japanese Canadians ordered to turn over property and belongings to Custodian of Enemy Alien Property as a "protective measure only".
On January 19th the Federal cabinet order-in-council grants Custodian of Enemy Alien Property the right to dispose of Japanese property without owners' consent.
March 6. Government supply vessel Greenhill Park explodes in Vancouver harbour while loading at CPR Pier B. It is Vancouver’s worst disaster since the Great Fire of 1886. Eight people die and $30,000 of window glass is shattered throughout the downtown area. On May 8, 1945, Nazi Germany is finally defeated. On Monday, August 6th Hiroshima is destroyed by an atomic bomb. Three days later on Thursday, August 9th, a second atomic bomb destroys Nagasaki. On August 14th Japan surrenders unconditionally. Before the year ends, Japanese Canadian "Repatriation" begins; 3,964 go to Japan, many of whom are Canadian citizens.
The Chinese Exclusion Act is repealed.
Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church at 525 Campbell Street is destroyed by fire.
Construction of a new Sacred Heart Church begins. Until 1949 it was illegal for the Japanese Canadians to return to Vancouver or Western Canada, despite the end of the war. This same year, the new Salvation Army Temple building (Mercer & Mercer) at Hastings and Gore is completed. Pictured right: Sacred Heart Church at Keefer and Campbell, completed 1949. James Johnstone photo
The Marsh Study of 1950 proposes "slumclearance" and massive medium-to-highrise redevelopment of the residential part of the East End. By the same year, most of Strathcona’s Italian population has moved east to the Commercial Drive area. Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Church at Campbell and Keefer is completed.
Queen Elizabeth’s coronation prompts thousands of Canadians to buy televisions.
Vancouver’s interurban streetcar system is replaced by electric trolley buses.
The East End is targeted by government plans for urban renewal. Three levels of government combine to acquire blocks of houses, bulldoze them and erect public housing projects. By this year, half of Strathcona’s population is of Chinese heritage.
The franchise is extended to all aboriginal people. Despite protests from Chinese property owners led by Foon Sien, Phase One of the city’s Strathcona redevelopment plan begins in 1960, bulldozing 30 acres to build MacLean Park high-rise and the Raymur-Campbell public housing project. An estimated 860 people, excluding boarders and transients, are displaced. Over half this number are Chinese.
Despite the rejection of two city plans by the local community Phase II of the Strathcona Redevelopment Project proceeds with work on the block bounded by Keefer, Jackson, Georgia and Dunlevy Streets.
With historic Gastown facing demolition Vancouver's Community Arts Council, which had been showing heritage film and slide shows on the area for years, sponsors a walking tour to point out the area’s charming buildings and colorful past. On September 22, more than 700 people show up in the rain. The CAC organizes more tours creating greater public awareness of Gastown’s heritage. With each successful tour the prospect of Gastown's demolition begins to fade. The wholesale uprooting and demolition in Strathcona ends in 1968 when the Strathcona Property Owner’s and Tenant Association is founded and fights successfully to institute a self-help rehabilitation programme for the neighbourhood.
On January 6, twenty five women, the "Militant Mothers of Raymur," blockade the train tracks between Raymur and Glen demanding a safe crossing for Seymour students who have to cross the busy and dangerous tracks every day to get to school. Their intermittent train stopping blockades prompt the city to build an overpass at Keefer later in the year.
In February the Provincial government designates Gastown an historic site ensuring the area’s old brick buildings will be saved from demolition. At 10pm on August 7th mounted Vancouver City Police wearing riot gear but not their badge numbers charge into a crowd of 2000 people attending the Gastown Smoke-In and Street Jamboree, a peaceful demonstration against increasing police brutality used in Mayor Tom Campbell’s “Operation Dustpan,” an attempt by Campbell to “clean up Gastown.” The police charge the crowd at least four times clubbing dozens of innocent people, many of them late night strollers and shoppers, in their attempt to clear Maple Tree Square. Despite documentation on film and video as well as coverage by the Globe & Mail, no charges were laid against any police officers.
SPOTA opens its office at 820 Jackson Street. Most of Vancouver’s historic Black neighbourhood, Hogan’s Alley, is leveled in 1972 for the construction of the Georgia Viaduct off ramp.
The City of Vancouver receives the Vincent Massey Award for Excellence in the Urban Environment for an outstanding achievement: The Strathcona Rehabilitation. A plaque commemorating this award can be found on the SE corner of New MacLean Park beside the linear park project on the 600 to 800 blocks of Hawks Avenue for which the city won this prize.
Carole Itter and Daphne Marlatt publish Opening Doors: Vancouver's East End a collection of aural histories gleaned through taped interviews with a large number of East End old timers. Pictured right: Cover, Opening Doors: Vancouver's East End
The first phase of the Chinese Cultural Centre is opened September 14.
The Mau Dan Housing Co-operative was established October of this year, the last of five housing projects initiated by the Strathcona Area Housing Society (SAHS).
During the November civic election voters support the motion that Vancouver be declared a nuclear-free zone. They also okay Sunday shopping and a majority vote for a ward system. The province, which has control over the city charter, prevents the city from adopting a ward system, deeming a majority of less than 60 percent not enough of a majority.
Vancouver Moving Theatre is founded.
The World Exposition on Communication and Transportation, Expo 86, is held in Vancouver to mark the centenary of the extension of the Canadian Pacific Railway to Vancouver. A number of low income East End residents are evicted by landlords wishing to upgrade their hotels and cash in on the tourism bonanza.
The Canadian Multiculturalism Act is passed by Parliament. In 1988, more than four decades after Japanese Canadians were forcibly evacuated from the coast of British Columbia and interned in concentration camps, a bill for redress for the Japanese Canadians is passed. Prime Minister Brian Mulroney issues an apology for the miscarriage of justice that led to the internment and loss of property.
The Strathcona Residents Association is founded as the result of a three-year community planning process sponsored by the City of Vancouver. The process was the most comprehensive planning dialogue ever undertaken in our community. Hundreds of residents and dozens of groups took part in the process. Strathcona's specially designed RT-3 Zoning Code is established the same year as the result of the same process.
The SRA Zoning Committee receives a grant from the from Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Foundation to restore thirteen heritage porches in the neighbourhood. The project ran from 1993 to 1996 and received heritage awards from the City of Vancouver and Heritage BC.
Houses that participated in the project were: 603 Atlantic, 610 East Georgia, 772 East Georgia, 831 East Georgia, 856 East Georgia, 546 Keefer, 715 Keefer, 851 Keefer, 630 Princess, 549 Union, 618 Union, 633 Union, and 666 Union.
East End based historian John Atkin publishes Strathcona: Vancouver's First Neighbourhood through Whitecap Books. Pictured right: Strathcona: Vancouver's First Neighbourhood by John Atkin
Wayson Choy publishes the quintessential East End novel, The Jade Peony.
The Eastside Culture Crawl begins in 1997 with 45 artists in 3 Strathcona area studio buildings and is attended by a few hundred people. The Supreme Court rules that natives' oral history is legitimate in making land claims in B.C.
The homeless and anti-poverty activists occupy the empty Woodward’s Department Store site. How to deal with the drug problem in the (DTES) downtown eastside becomes a major civic election issue. The Coalition of Progressive Electors and their mayoral candidate Larry Campbell sweep into City Hall. Wayson Choy's The Jade Peony is the first book to be selected for the One Book One Vancouver city-wide reading club event. The same year, the west side of the 700-block of Hawks Avenue wins the Vancouver Gardening Society and Vancouver Parks Board sponsored most Beautiful block contest. This is the first time that a block in the East End has won the contest. The Vancouver Courier features the rowhouse at 701-725 Hawks on its front page.
The long-awaited referendum on reinstituting the ward system is defeated.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper issues a full apology to the Chinese-Canadian community for the head tax imposed on Chinese immigrants who came to Canada between 1885 and 1923, offering compensation to surviving Chinese-Canadians who paid the tax, as well as to widows and their children.
The owners of 844 Dunlevy win both a Vancouver City and Provincial Heritage Award of Merit for the saving and restoration of their house built by Frederick William Sentell in 1899.
The City of Vancouver acquires the Heatley Block, a two storey landmark combination retail apartment block on the SW corner of Heatley & Hastings for the site of the new full service East End library. Though the library has been eagerly anticipated by the neighborhood for some time, the plans to demolish the landmark building which has four viable businesses that bring healthy foot traffic to East Hastings mobilizes large numbers in the community to establish the Heatley Block Preservation Society. A lengthy battle to save the Heatley block through offering the 1921 Strathcona School building ensues.
On February 3, the Vancouver Public Library publicly announces that they have purchased an alternate site for the new East End Library and that the Heatley Block is no longer under threat of demolition. The VPL press release reads: "The City of Vancouver had earlier acquired the Heatley Block, located on Hastings Street at Heatley Avenue, as the location for the library branch. After hearing from the community, however, the Library Board determined that an alternate site would be preferable." On February 12, the Olympic Torch relay runs through Strathcona east along Keefer to Heatley where it turns south to Prior then is run east along Prior and north on Campbell where it turns east along Hastings to Clark. Ron Suzuki, Recreation Programmer of the Strathcona Community Centre carries the torch along Keefer among cheering crowds by the Community Centre. On April 21, Heritage Vancouver includes the East End's historic core, "Strathcona North of Hastings" as No. 5 in its 2010 Top Ten Most Endangered list.