Civic historian John Atkin explains what is most unique about the Balmoral sign. DJ Joe moved to the Downtown Eastside in the year 2000, and she has lived in the Balmoral since 2001.

Museum of Vancouver

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Transcript

NARRATOR
Civic historian John Atkin explains what is most unique about the Balmoral sign.

JOHN ATKIN
When you look at some of the earlier signs that have survived, you get some
great ones like The Balmoral, which is really interesting design because it sort
of bends itself in this lovely curve, swoops around to encompass the clock that’s
tucked in there and then it’s got another array of light bulbs, and it’s that nice sort
of transition between purely a light bulb sign and the neon sign.

NARRATOR
The Balmoral changed alongside its home neighbourhood. DJ Joe moved to the
Downtown Eastside in the year 2000, and she has lived in the Balmoral since
2001. She moved in during a time when the Balmoral’s neon sign was in its last days of lighting up.

DJ JOE
The first year when I came down to Vancouver, the Balmoral sign used to light
up, but now it doesn’t anymore.

The lights would shine in my window when they turned on at night.

And I’d wake up in the middle of the night, it’s like, ‘where the hell is that bright
light coming from?’ And I’d look out the window and then there’s the neon sign.
The lights are on.

Now I have a room on the second floor. It’s not the same without having those
lights on.

There’s something about that sign that catches everybody’s eye.


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