I am delighted to report that redevelopment of West Vancouver's heritage Rush House is underway. While I sometimes wonder if these small 4-unit developments are really worth all the effort, hopefully when nearby Vinson House Cottages and Major Rush Mews are finished, I will experience the same satisfaction I enjoyed from the acclaim granted to Hollyburn Mews. However, it sure is difficult getting these projects off the ground-literally. Thanks to Brent Richter, the following story appeared in the North Shore News on Friday.
The 1923 Rush House sits raised on blocks Friday morning in preparation of its move to the east side of its lot on the southwest corner of 12th Street at Jefferson Avenue in West Vancouver’s Upper Ambleside neighbourhood.
In November, council voted unanimously to approve a heritage revitalization agreement for the historic home in exchange for allowing developer Michael Geller to move the structure nine metres (30 feet) to the east and build a laneway cottage and a garden cottage each just under 2,000 square feet on the lot.
The Craftsman-style home was built by Maj. Frederick Rush, a First World War veteran who developed the lot into a 0.73-hectare farm following the war.
The home is now legally protected as a heritage building. In addition to the two new dwellings, the developer will be creating a garden suite in the basement of the house, and building accessory garages on the property. The developer is marketing the project as Major Rush Mews.
Prior to lifting and relocating the house, I had to relocate a very old rhododendron tree on the property. While I don't know how old it was, some neighbours thought it was almost as old as the 1923 house. Below are some photos of its relocation. Thanks to Lee Brandt of Lee's Trees for its relocation, and to neighbour and former Vancouver city planner Mike Kemble for the photos. (I should add that Mike is also responsible for introducing me to this property and development opportunity!)
|I'm told the tree weighed 15,000 lbs.|
|When it's all finished next August, all being well, this is how it will look.|