Downtown Victoria Tour
Fisgard Street – 500 Block
532 1/2 Fisgard Street – Quan Yuen Yen Building

In 1912 Quan Yuen Yen and Joe Gar Chow hired architect Samuel Buttrey Birds to design this “lodging house” on land between the Hart’s Block at 529-539 Herald Street and Hart’s Fisgard Building at 532-536 Fisgard Street. The address is 532 1/2 Fisgard Street and it is accessible from a passageway – known as Blood Alley – opening onto the front of the Hart’s Fisgard Building, 532-536 Fisgard Street.

Hart's Fisgard Building, 532-536 Fisgard Street, with a portion of the Quan Yuen Yen building visible behind it.

Hart’s Fisgard Building, 532-536 Fisgard Street, with a portion of the Quan Yuen Yen building visible behind it.

Local architectural historians typically refer to this building as the “Quan Yuen Yen building.”

Portion of the Quan Yuen Yen building, built in 1912 as tenements between the Hart's Block and Hart's Fisgard Building.

Portion of the Quan Yuen Yen building, built in 1912-1913 as tenements between the Hart’s Block and Hart’s Fisgard Building.

Hart's Block, 529-539 Herald Street. Built in 1891.

Hart’s Block, 529-539 Herald Street. Built in 1891 The Quan Yuen Yen building is directly behind the Hart’s Block and is accessible by a passageway known as Blood Alley..

Here is a map showing the location of 532 1/2 Fisgard Street. Note that Google Maps refers to it as Dragon Alley:

 

Here is a Google Street View image of Blood Alley, aka Dragon Alley:

 

 

Additional Information About the Quan Yuen Yen Building, 532 1/2 Fisgard Street

Although the Quan Yuen Yen Building at 532 1/2 Fisgard Street appears to be one continuous structure, along with 532-536 Fisgard Street and 529-539 Herald Street, they are legally divided into three separate buildings. The former Quan Yuen Yen Building at 532 1/2 Fisgard Street is now divided into 12 residential strata townhouse units {condominiums)

  • Assessed Value – 12 strata townhouse units (July 2015): ranging from $414,000 to $422,000
  • Assessed Value 12 strata townhouse units (July 2014): ranging from $402,000 to $410,000

A Brief History of the Quan Yuen Yen building, 532 1/2 Fisgard Street.

In 1912 Quan Yuen Yen and Joe Gar Chow hired architect Samuel Buttrey Birds to design this “lodging house” on land between the Hart’s Block at 529-539 Herald Street and Hart’s Fisgard Building at 532-536 Fisgard Street.

It was built in 1912-1913. The original building permit, issued to Quan Yen and Joe Gar Chow by the City of Victoria in December 1912, describes a new brick building, 2 storey, 24 rooms, 10,900 square feet, “purpose: lodging house” with an estimated construction cost of $14,000.

The address is 532 1/2 Fisgard Street and it is accessible from a passageway – known as Blood Alley – opening onto the front of the Hart’s Fisgard Building, 532-536 Fisgard Street and the Hart’s Block, 529-539 Herald Street.

For most of its history this building has been tenements. In its early days the tenants were almost exclusively Chinese.

It is now divided into 12 strata townhouses.

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