By-Law Introduced for Wood Block Paving – March 21, 1898

City of Vancouver business district 1898 map

The streets marked in blue above show where wood block paving was installed. The City Engineer certified that the probable life of the wood block paving would be 12 years and the grading and curbing 40 years.

This transcript was made in 2022 by Transcribimus volunteer Lynn Shane

Illustration source: COVA Item : SGN 1069.17 – [Section of streetcar track and wood block pavement, from reconstruction of Granville Street line]

Source: City of Vancouver Archives Series 31
Volume 8 pages 212 – 221

[Volume 8 page] 212

Vancouver March 21st, 1898.

The Council met on Monday March 21st, 1898.

Present: His Worship, the Mayor and Aldermen Painter, Townley, McQueen, Neelands, McPhaiden, McGuigan, Brown, Foreman, McMorran and Bruce.

The Minutes of last meeting were read and adopted.


From John Mahoney complaining about ‘water’ overflowing Lot 21. Block 20. 196.
Referred to Board of Works.

From Ruth Pirt asking when she would be wanted for work.
Clerk to reply.

From the Chief of Police reporting on the electric lights.

From Dr. Robertson asking that a polish for the hospital instruments be purchased.
Referred to the Health Committee.

From J.J. Carment, City Clerk, Kamloops, enclosing a copy of section 43 of the Revised Statutes of Ontario in relation to fining Licensed Houses for selling intoxicating liquors to drunken or riotous persons etc. and asking that the Council cooperate with them to have a similar section inserted in the Provincial Liquor Licence Act.

Moved by Alderman McQueen
Seconded by “ McGuigan
That the City Clerk be instructed to reply to the City Clerk of Kamloops to the effect that as the City has a special Charter giving them the powers to be petitioned for that, they cannot endorse the petition.

[Volume 8 page] 213

From J.J. Brooks asking for work as help.
Referred to the Police Committee.

From Henry Barusky, New York thanking the Mayor for information in relation to Vancouver.

From Shelton & Co asking why the City Hall furniture was purchased without tenders being called for.

From Irwin Mahon, Denver Col. Secretary of the International Mining Congress asking inviting the Mayor and Council to attend their Annual Session in Salt Lake City on the 6th of July.

From Messrs Macdonell and Deacon asking for compensation for Hugh Calwell for injuries received from falling off a sidewalk on Gore Avenue.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From Mellon and Scott asking for the renewal of the Insurance on the Hospital.
Referred to the Finance Committee.

The following Reports were received and read:

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee met on Friday March 18th 1898.
Present: the full Board.

The following accounts were recommended for payment:
C.P.R. Telegraph Co. Telegram $1.21
J.B. Grant Repairs 3.00
Clarke & Stuart Furniture 933.00
MacKenzie Bros. Supplies 24.65
Thos. Dunn & Co. “ 2.40
J.T. Brown Disbursements .55

The following contracts were approved for hiring for the Police Department

[Volume 8 page] 214

and authorized to be signed by the Mayor and City Clerk and the Corporate Seal affixed thereto:

John McLean, Frank Baynes, Chas. Mulhern and Thos. Wylie.

Resolved that the contract for advertising for the year be referred to the City Solicitor to see that it is properly executed.

Resolved that Lot 31. Block 71. D.L. 185 be purchased for $500 and that the Mayor be authorized to advance to Mr. Lamb who is purchasing for the City the sum of $50 to bind the bargain.


From J.B. Tyrell of the Geological Survey of Canada, Ottawa, asking to be furnished with the latest official figures of the population of Vancouver.

Resolved that he be informed that the population is estimated to be 20,000.

From the Secretary of the School Board asking for a supplementary estimate of $6500.
Laid over for Estimates.

From Morrison & Dockerill, Solicitors for J.L. Cameron, Lessee of the eastern portion of Lot 7. Block 3. O.G.T. stating that he was assessed for 2 feet more than his lease called for.
Referred to the City Engineer to have the Lot measured.

From Samuel R. Robins and Crowder & Penzer quoting the following prices for double screened coal 2240 lbs to the ton.

Samuel R. Robins:

Double Screened New Wellington Coal F.O.B. on a wharf in Vancouver to be named by him $5.00 per ton in 100 ton lots of 2240 lbs hauled by the City as quickly as possible after delivery.

[Volume 8 page] 215

Crowder & Penzer:

Best Old Wellington Coal Double Screened on their wharf in 100 ton lots. City to do hauling and sacking at $4.95 per ton of 2240 lbs.

Resolved that the tender of Crowder and Penzer be recommended for acceptance.

From Lieut. Col. Worsnop asking for a grant of $600 for the battery band.
Laid over for Estimates.

From City Auditor James asking for a table.

From Nicol Allan asking to be appointed a Notary Public to collect Provincial Voters.

Resolved that Henry Earle be appointed Clerk at a salary of $16.00 per month payable by voucher monthly dating from March 1st 1898.

Resolved that Messrs. Nicol Allan and E.M. McDonough be authorized to proceed to collect Provincial Voters on Saturday next under previous agreement.

Resolved that Mr. Wm. McCraney be paid $300.00 for expenses incurred in distributing the Klondike Pamphlets in the East; such sum to form part of the $2000.00 originally appropriated by Council.

Resolved that the Lease between the Corporation of the City of Vancouver and Samuel and James Harris for a portion of the Shed in connection with the Market be approved and authorized to be signed by the Mayor and City Clerk and the Corporate Seal affixed thereto.

Sgd Jas McQueen

Moved by Alderman McQueen.
Seconded by “ McGuigan
That the Report be adopted as read.

[Volume 8 page] 216

Moved in amendment by Alderman Neelands.
Seconded by Alderman Foremen.
That that portion of the Report in reference to awarding the Coal Contract be referred back.

Amendment lost; motion carried.

Health Committee

The Health Committee met on Wednesday March 16th 1898.
Present: Alderman McQueen (in the Chair) Townley Foreman and Bruce.

The following accounts were recommended for payment:
Tho Brisette Cooking 21.05
Chas. Hach Supplies 148.75
J. Dodson “ 16.15
Crowder & Penzer. “ 39.75
Clarke & Stuart “ 12.02
City Grocery Co. “ 88.21
J.C. Woodrow “ 52.46
C.P.R. Co. Ticket 30.95
Mrs. Murphy Labor 5.55
B.C. Mills T & T Co Supplies 8.06
Pioneer Steam Laundry Washing 68.89
Dominion Fish Co. Supplies 14.52
R. Campbell & Son. “ 8.10
J.E. Barwick “ 3.00
Cleeve Canning Co. “ 3.35
McDowell & Co. “ 92.96
City of Victoria Care of lepers 56.30


From the Health Inspector calling attention to the unsanitary condition of Block 49 D.L. 181 and asking for box drains in said block.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From the Medical Health Officer reporting cases of Scarlet Fever and Diptheria [Diphtheria] and asking that the Board of School Trustees be requested to cooperate with the Health Authorities to prevent the spread of disease.

[Volume 8 page] 217

Resolved that the Chairman of the Health Committee be requested to bring the matter to the attention of the School Board.

From Miss Macfie furnishing a list of articles required for furnishing the Woman’s Ward.
Resolved that tenders be invited for furnishing same.

The Estimates for the year were considered and approved.

Sgd Jas McQueen
Acting Chairman

Moved by Alderman McGuigan.
Seconded by “ McQueen.
That the Report be adopted.

Board of Works

The Board of Works met on the 17th of March 1898.
Present: the full Board.


From Petitioners asking for improvements on 7th Av. 10th Av. Alberni St. & Seymour Street respectively.
Laid over for Estimates.

From Petitioners asking for improvements on Burnaby St. and Broughton Street.
Provided for Estimates.

From W. Pedder claiming $3.25 for axle etc. broken while driving on Nicola St.
Referred to the City Solicitor.

From the Health Inspector as to need of drainage for Block 49 D.L. 181.
Referred to the Engineer to have a box drain put in at once.

[Volume 8 page] 218

From Dr. Selwyn claiming $7.50 for medical attendance for his daughter who fell off sidewalk at Robson Street.
Referred to the City Solicitors.

The Report of Alderman McPhaiden and City Engineer as to the sand bar at the mouth of False Creek was filed for reference.

From Geo. R. Maxwell Esq. M.P. relative to the beacons at the First Narrows.
Referred to the City Engineer.

Resolved that J. Romang be appointed Street Foreman under the City Engineer’s directions.

Mr. Cunningham of 7th Avenue Fairview asked to get work for his team.
He was informed that he would be given a chance if possible.

Resolved that the City Engineer be authorized to make the necessary changes to enlarge the City Treasurer’s office.

The matter of urinals for the lanes was discussed and it was decided to add $600.00 in the Estimates.

Street Paving (wood blocks)

Resolved that the date for the Court of Revision be fixed at 11 A.M. On Monday the 2nd day of May 1898 and that the City Clerk be instructed to call for tenders for the proposed wood block paving one month before the 5th 1898. Tenders for same to be sent in by 4 P.M. on that date.

Resolved that the Engineer be instructed to write to find out the rates on Bituminous Rock laid down in Vancouver.

Tenders for crushed rock were received from A.E.E. Clark, Chas. Stinson & Co., Ironside & Co and W.L. Nicol.

[Volume 8 page] 219

Resolved that the tender of W.L. Nicol be recommended for acceptance.

Sgd H.J. Painter

Moved by Alderman Painter
Seconded by “ Neelands
That the portion of the Report awarding the contract for crushed rock to W. L. Nicol be struck out and the following inserted instead “That new tenders be called for supplying the City with crushed rock in accordance with specifications to be seen in the City Engineer’s office. Tenders to be in by 4 o’clock on Thursday the 31st March” and that the balance of the Report be adopted as read.

Introduction of By-Laws

Moved by Alderman Painter
Seconded by “ McPhaiden
That the following By-Laws for Wood Block Paving, Grading and Curbing be introduced and read a first time:

Grading and Curbing Seymour Street between Hastings & Cordova, Richards Street between Hastings & Cordova, Water Street between Cordova and Carrall, Alexander Street between Carrall Street and Westminster Avenue, Hastings St. between Carrall and Westminster Avenue, Westminster Avenue between Hastings St. and Harris St. and Westminster Avenue between Harris Street and Westminster Avenue Bridge.

Wood Block Paving the above mentioned streets.

The City Engineer certified that the probable life of the wood block paving would be 12 years and the grading and curbing 40 years.

street car track and wood block paving
This image, dated about 1912, shows wood block paving 14 years after 1898 near the Granville streetcar line.

[Volume 8 page] 220


Moved by Alderman McMorran
Seconded by “ McQueen
That the following account be paid:
Crickmay Bros. Express and Duty on Police Supplies $16.50

Moved by Alderman McGuigan
Seconded by “ McMorran
That Miss Pirt, Day Nurse at the Woman’s Ward be paid $30.00 per month and Miss Parsons, Night Nurse $25.00 per month.

Moved by Alderman McPhaiden
Seconded by “ Bruce.
That the City donate $8.00 to assist in sending an old man to Toronto.

Moved by Alderman Painter.
Seconded by “ Townley.
That the City contribute one third of the amount payable for the following Local Improvements:

Wood Block Paving the following streets:
Seymour Street from Hastings to Cordova St.
Richards “ “ “ “ “
Water “ “ Cordova to Carrall
Alexander “ “ Carrall St. to Westminster Av.
Westminster Av. “ Hastings St. to Harris St.
“ “ Harris St. to the Bridge
Hastings Street from Carrall St. to Westminster Av.

That a Court of Revision to hear any appeals against the Assessment on the real property to be benefitted by the proposed improvements be held on the 2nd of May at the hour of 11 o’clock in the forenoon and that notice be given of such sitting of the Court.

[Volume 8 page] 221

Notice of Motion

Alderman Townley gave notice that he would at the next meeting of Council move “That the fines imposed upon certain persons for riding bicycles upon the sidewalk on the 18th day of March 1898 be remitted in view of the fact that the condition of the street or streets was such that compliance with the By-Law was practically impossible”.

The Council then adjourned.

James F. Garden

Thos. F. McGuigan
City Clerk