On our Stories page, we have put the call out for you to share a story, observation, or idea (big or small) on how you re-imagine downtown Vancouver. Here is how Julia Fryer re-imagines downtown Vancouver:
Downtown Vancouver is a vibrant commercial, retail and housing mix with lots of entertainment and amenities. I dream of a downtown in the future with great public spaces animated by the people who live, work and have fun in its streets.
What if Vancouver’s downtown harnessed all of the rainfall in its physical form? Rather than hide rain underground, Vancouver could invite water into the city with water-activated sculptures, rain gardens, and rain-activated painting. Wouldn’t a canal that filled with rain be a beautiful place to walk by, to sit near, to read by on your lunch hour in the city? Urban waterscapes could be new while helping to manage our rainwater.
My vision for downtown is designed for its people. Wider sidewalks for pedestrians, weather guards with rain cover, and smaller storefronts to encourage stopping, browsing and chatting. I look forward to a day when I can stroll through a tree-lined avenue safe from the hustle and bustle of automobiles downtown.
For me, this city includes a grand plaza where festivals, a market and pop-up food stalls can bring vitality and interaction to the urban centre. Imagine we brought the market-feel from Granville Island to an area of downtown Vancouver? An opportunity for small businesses, local artisans and producers, the open-air pedestrian market would encourage the relaxing, patio sitting and people watching that everyone enjoys. And then come the artists. Inviting our public spaces to be coloured by the roster of local talent, artists, performers with commissioned pieces, community-made art like murals, and activations in underused spaces such as alleyways will show that the city is cared for—and is ultimately owned by its people.
There is proof that projects don’t have to be costly or time-consuming, they can be done overnight. When citizens are empowered to change their city, the future downtown will reach its full potential.
Do you have a downtown Vancouver story, observation, or idea (big or small) you’d like to share? We’d love to hear from you! Share your contribution with us on our Stories page. Your contributions will help us re-imagine downtown Vancouver!