Calls to preserve the so-called pagoda house at 528 Goldstream Ave. may yet come to fruition, but moving the house would be costly.
Council is considering an application to rezone 528 and 532 Goldstream Ave. that would see a six-storey 77 residential units building constructed and include two levels of underground parking.
Langford Coun. Lillian Szpak said during the April 4 discussion that several residents were concerned and that council should look at moving it and potentially making it into a tea house or some other venue if that would help preserve it.
Both Coun. Lanny Seaton and Mayor Stew Young said the project would be expensive, with Young adding council shouldn’t spend money on it. Still, if the property owners, developers, or another interested party wanted to move it, which had been done for other properties in the past, that’d be a good thing.
But the structure of the house would make moving it challenging.
Rachel Sansom of Grayland Consulting, who applied on behalf of the company looking to rezone the property – Goldstream Residences Corp. – said the owners were researching options and talking to a house moving company but said the project had to be viable.
The pagoda house was built in 1935, according to B.C. Assessment. But several theories about its origins exist, according to Langford resident Liane Shott. These include that the house was formerly used for a Japanese consul, a Chinese museum and an art studio.
In an email, Shott said it would be a “travesty to demolish such a historic and architecturally beautiful home.”