Friday, August 8, 2008

Changes afoot at Herb & Spice

For health food--including organic, vegan, granola, and other hippie staples--most people in central Ottawa choose the Herb & Spice on Bank at Lewis. I particularly like the bring-your-own-container products, including honey, feta cheese, flour, various peanut butters, and of course herbs and spices.

It fits in well with the community, and contributes to it as well, with a box for the food bank and space for free community magazines and flyers.

Lately, however, there have been some winds of change blowing at the Herb & Spice building--though perhaps not with the store itself. Here's the site in question:

Looks fairly nice. Large, inviting windows, mural on the wall. Bikes parked in front.

Back in May, I noticed this sign in the window, indicating that the plot was going to be severed. (Which is planning jargon, meaning the parcel of land on which the building is built will legally be transformed into two smaller properties; there won't be any physical separation in this process.)

The part being severed is the building back from Bank which is connected by a one-storey connection to the building housing the store. The rest of the block behind that building is a gravel parking lot--leading me to suspect that a developer is interested in buying the parking lot and the severed building in order to consolidate the site and put up a big new building (which would not necessarily be unwelcome...).

In late June, the wall was getting some more decoration. Here the artist traces a circle from a large metal ring. Behind him, the dark-red-and-beige building is built on the part of the parcel of land that will be severed.

Here in this photo from July, we see the finished (?) work.

Yesterday, I noticed that the signboard and awning had been removed and were laid beside the building.

Not really sure what is up with that. Hopefully just a redecoration and not a bad sign (pun unintended).

I suppose I could have gone inside and asked, but I wanted to get home, and it was raining.

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