Addicted to novelty since 2001

One Less Starbucks in Vancouver

There was a big explosion on West Broadway last night, at about 2:30am:

Police on the scene said they were treating the explosion as suspicious, but fire investigators were also investigating the possibility it could have been caused by a gas leak in the taco restaurant.

A bus stop in front of the explosion was destroyed, and windows were shattered on several other businesses, including the London Drugs shop across the street.

For some reason ‘taco restaurant’ looks and feels weird there. I have no explanation as to why. I mean, replace ‘taco’ with ‘pizza’ and it looks normal.

The CBC article just has one dodgy little photo. I found three more on Flickr.

22 Responses to “One Less Starbucks in Vancouver”

  1. Kirsten

    Huh, so that’s why the B-Line was re-rerouted up Yukon this morning. I assumed it had something to do with Cambie construction.

    I think you’re expecting to see the phrase “taco stand” rather than “taco restaurant”. That Taco Del Mar was pretty good, actually…. I just ate there about two weeks ago.

  2. Derek K. Miller

    John Bollwitt has some other photos, but nothing too revealing.

    I find it odd that, nearly 15 years ago, there was a similar explosion only a block away on the same street, just west of Broadway and Cambie, when the Dynamite Pizza (yes, really) blew up, also in the middle of the night. In that case, an employee had been trying to clean the pizza oven with gasoline.

  3. Derek K. Miller

    John Bollwitt has some more pics, but nothing too revealing.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/audihertz/sets/72157603901265574/

    I find it odd that, nearly 15 years ago, there was a similar explosion only a block away on the same street, just west of Broadway and Cambie, when the Dynamite Pizza (yes, really) blew up, also in the middle of the night. In that case, an employee had been trying to clean the pizza oven with gasoline.

  4. Lisa

    You’re right Darren, we were slow with the pictures.

    The first one you saw was from a reporter’s cell phone.

    We have some better ones now, from our TV cameras and Lesley, as well as a bunch of other “audience” contributors.

    (Thanks Lesley!)

    Lisa Johnson
    CBC News Vancouver

  5. Michael Kwan

    There are a few pics up at News 1130 too. On a side note, I’d hate to be a stickler for grammar, but wouldn’t it be one fewer Starbucks and not one less?

  6. darren

    Lesley & Lisa: Strong work.

    Kirsten: Yeah, “Mexican restaurant” sounds normal, but “taco restaurant” doesn’t. Are there any other foods which get the “[food] restaurant” structure? As opposed to “[ethnicity restaurant]”.

    Michael: D’oh! You are absolutely right. That’s what I get for copying the title from one of those Flickr photos. Though, to my ear, “One Less Starbucks” sounds better than “One Fewer Starbucks”. That doesn’t make it any more grammatically correct, though.

  7. Gwen

    A new Starbucks opened at the corner of Broadway and Cambie, under two blocks away. But will all the Cancer Agency, London Drugs, and medical center workers trek so far?? (There’s a hospital Starbucks 4 blocks from the one that blew up.)

    I went to sleep at 2, 6 blocks away and slept through it all. :P

  8. darren

    Gwen: Like, opened up this morning? I always thought Starbucks engaged in this kind of instant, anaerobic procreation.

  9. Shawn

    What frosts my arse to no end is that my tush hit the drivers seat at 8:38AM. Because I was listening to CBC Radio I was not hearing about this whole affair — Rick Cluff had left for coffee and The Current boneheads in toronto were rambling on about gawd knows what. Toronto fiddled while Vancouver burned. :-)

  10. Shawn

    Seriously, am I the only one who believes that radio morning drive goes until 9AM. And that 8:37 is a stupid time to cut from local to go national?

  11. Lissa

    shawn,
    generally you’re right. the morning drive goes until either 9am or 10am.
    the CBC is a whole other panda though. i don’t question, just accept.

    this whole thing scares me though. i spent many a time at that bus stop last year, bothering those baristas at 9pm every thursday after band practice for a decaf cappuccino to get me home. my goodness…

  12. Derek K. Miller

    Strange how there was a similar explosion almost in the same block some 15 years ago, when an employee of Dynamite Pizza (yes really) tried cleaning the oven in the middle of the night with gasoline.

  13. Tamea B.

    I live about six blocks away from the big boom. Maybe it’s the rickety construction of my building, but the blast was strong enough to knock frames from my walls.

    And ‘One Less Starbucks’ sounds like the title of a poignant yet ironic Folk ditty. ‘One Fewer Starbucks’ may be more accurately grammatic, but it doesn’t have the same lyrical hutzpa!

  14. raincoaster

    I helped open that store, but back then there was no taco shop, just a discount jeans outlet.

    No idea why, but my post about this isn’t showing on the CBC trackbacks page.

    @ Derek, yes, I remember the pizza thing. There were a lot of questions around the whole thing at the time. You have to be supernaturally stupid to clean an oven with gasoline.

    Starbucks is in shrinking mode right now, so the temptation might be to close that store altogether, but my bet is they’ll move a block or so farther West, to get the B Line riders and more people from the hospital. Cambie is too far east to walk on a coffee break, and the hospital crowd is a very, very lucrative one.

  15. Melodie

    Aw, don’t worry about the London Drugs workers. Their store is moving down the street to that new building that’s going up on the opposite corner from the new Starbucks.

  16. Morgan

    I think “one less starbucks” is supposed to be a play on the “one less car” slogan.

  17. Raul

    Ok, so I am going to chime on this story a tad too late. First, I have never eaten at Taco del Mar, but the idea just grosses me out. I’ve had better Mexican food at home. Second, I have enjoyed coffee at that specific location, many, many times with close friends of mine. And let’s face it, it’s just like 20 steps away from the B-Line bus stop and less than 2 from the 9 Broadway stop. And third… happy belated Valentine’s y’all.

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