Harris Green is Victoria’s smallest neighbourhood, comprising just 12 blocks. Although it began as a residential neighbourhood, for years it was primarily a commercial district, but recent condominium developments are bringing residents back to the area. Pandora Avenue, Cook Street, and Meares Street bound the area, and its westerly boundary is between Quadra and Blanshard Streets. The neighbourhood’s name originated from a strip of parkland that runs along Pandora Avenue from Quadra Street to Chambers Street, named after Thomas Harris, Victoria’s first mayor (1862-65). The neighbourhood’s northern border boasts several noteworthy churches, including the visually prominent Metropolitan United Church.
This community has undergone the most significant transformation of any Victoria neighbourhood, other than downtown, reflecting its proximity to downtown. The area developed early, and the sections nearest Quadra and Blanshard Streets were first built up primarily as single family housing for downtown workers. Fire insurance maps from 1885 also indicate orchards and a few small commercial establishments in the area. Dwellings were concentrated along the west border nearest the downtown core. (source: www.victoriaheritagefoundation.ca)