Early this summer, I finally gave in to my curiosity and headed up the steps of the BC Lung Association building at 2675 Oak Street, which I’d passed by many times since moving to the neighbourhood. I was glad I did. I expressed my interest in the building’s history, met with some of the staff, and eventually, on a return visit, I was given a “grand tour” of the interior – as well as the opportunity to take some great photos. I’m happy to share them with you here!
The building was constructed in 1928 as Vancouver’s first Jewish Community Centre, and filled that role until the new centre was built in 1962. However, although the inside, all dark wood and antique detail, appears to be original, it turns out that the interior had to be virtually gutted when the restoration was done in the mid-1980’s. The building at that time was in such a sorry state that only the exterior could be truly restored.
At any rate, the restoration – or “rehabilitation” as it is probably more accurately called – was so well done that the building received an award from the City of Vancouver’s Heritage Advisory Committee, which is prominently displayed in the lobby.