Friday, 12 February 2010

Vancouver City - ready for the Olympics

Welcome to Vancouver ... the Olympic buzz is on ...This is traditional Vancouver: older buildings, new buildings and looking down to Stanley Park and over the Burrard Inlet to the North Vancouver mountains.Fiberglass eagles are painted by artists ... this one with a First Nations design.Banners add colour ...Buildings are wrapped with huge posters to support our athletes.Commercial sponsors wrapped entire buildings.This sign is seen too often ... lanes and entire roads are reserved for Olympic traffic.Our old courthouse is now the Vancouver Art Gallery and has become a meeting place for people who want to make a statement. The front ...Back ...And on the steps a lively dancing group with a strange message about the end of the world. Vancouver is known for its excellent cuisine and international foods.We have food for everyone, even those who only eat raw food.We have been called a glass city. We do love to see our views of ocean and mountains!You see old buildings - the stately Marine Building mixed with the new and laced with trolley lines and the ever present cranes. Skies darken showing how our weather can change.In the 1800's the first buildings were mostly sawmills in 'Gastown' on the inlet. Vancouver had a major fire in the 1880's and war rebuilt as the population flowed in. Vancouver has continued to grow.This steam clock dates to the turn of the century.In the West End of Vancouver, high rises dominate and a few heritage houses are tucked away.Some old buildings have been restored from run down hotels to a tourist spot.Canada place where the opening was staged.Some historic building fronts have been saved and a new building built around it.This is the Olympic Village where the athletes stay. There was a great controversy about this large Australian flag - the IOC wanted it taken down and eventually allowed it (after great public outcry).The dome houses our Science World and was built for Expo.It is in a horseshoe shaped area called False Creek - it was originally a drainage wet land, then industrial before being reclaimed for '86 Expo.
Crows have been pushed out of the city and now meet to discuss where they will sleep for the night. Groups congregate and then fly to the suburbs. They are not graceful fliers - not built for long distances. But, like people, they seem to like city life.To the west is beautiful Stanley Park, located on a peninsula. The photo above looks back to downtown Vancouver with the 'Five Sails' and Canada Place.
Vancouver is truly an international city with one of the most beautiful harbors in the world.


Carol said...

I enjoyed your tour of Vancouver. Thanks for sharing your photographs :)

Vivien said...

I've never been to Vancouver and really enjoyed this great virtual tour. Thanks! It all looks lovely -- an ideal site for the Olympics

Terry van der Est said...

Vivian, I was born and raised in Vancouver and spent a lot of time downtown (I worked in the TD bank tower) as a teen and young adult. Your pictures capture quite a bit of what I remember. Living in Maple Ridge, I don't get much opportunity (or desire) to get into downtown Vancouver, but looking at your pictures I have gotten the itch to go downtown. Great pictures Vivian. - Terry van der Est