Originally Posted by Spring2008
The improvements are run down, and located along a prime commercial strip. Land values make it almost impossible not to maximize the FAR by keeping those run down shops open, and it's not like these are quality historic buildings by any means.
I ate at the Lido once, it was typical cheap café grub. Bacon and eggs, fairly average burgers and fries with bulk gravy, ect... There used to be heaps of little restaurants like it, there are few left.
I agree with the buildings not having historical relevance enough to call for their preservation, but you need to be careful when redeveloping in an area like Kensington. Those little eclectic single story brick buildings with quirky art shops, skateboard stores, used record shops, non-chain coffee houses, comic book stores, art house theater, bead store for making cheap jewelry, ect... Those are what "made" Kensington what it is today, and that is slowly being eroded away and pushed out of the area.
You might not mind the changes, you might like what that area becomes, but it will no longer be the "Kensington" of old that initially made that area of the city such an interesting place to window shop and spend an afternoon. It was special because it was different and because it's cheap little single story buildings allowed for cheap little cool stores to exist along that walk. It will all eventually be replaced by Starbucks, Original Joes, Bernard Callebaut, Wok Box, and sterile 4 story condo complexes with ground floor retail full of the usual stuff you can see in any given area of the city.
I see the same thing just starting to happen in Inglewood along 9th ave as well. We are slowly losing all of the antique shops, we will likely eventually lose Recordland, we will see large restaurant/pub chains move in and they will start to force all of the cool unique aspects of that area out.
Cool areas of the city like Kensington definitely deserve some redevelopment and to capitalize on their popularity, but be very careful that attempting to do so does not destroy most of what you are trying to capitalize on...