On This Spot is based in the BC city of Vancouver and has twelve self-guided historical walking tours set in the community. Today, to celebrate Culture Days, we are featuring three of those tours that focus on the human landscape and architect of the city. These tours are available for free both online and through the On This Spot app. They are great opportunities to get outside and explore Vancouver before the rainy weather of winter sets in.
In the first of today’s featured tours, “Architecture: A Tale Told In Wood, Brick, and Steel“, learn about Vancouver’s buildings and their stories. This tour will guide you through the rich architectural legacy of the first 50 years of Vancouver. We will see who and what inspired Vancouver’s most famous landmarks, learn the characteristics of some of the most prominent building styles, and examine the social, economic and technological changes reflected in the buildings from this dynamic and exciting time.
Our second tour of the day, “Vanished Vancouver“, follows in the same vein, looking this time at the architecture of Vancouver that no longer exists, at the now demolished buildings that once made up the city’s skyline. Many of Vancouver’s best buildings are gone. They have been destroyed and replaced, either because the fast-growing city outgrew the building or because government policies gave short shrift to preserving the city’s fascinating architectural heritage. All were victims of progress. In this tour, we will look at some of the best buildings that once stood in Vancouver and learn what happened to them.
Finally, our third tour, “Skylines: Poetic Reflections on Vancouver“, is a compilation of quotes and poems, reflections and excerpts on Vancouver’s identity and soul. It takes app users along the Stanley Park seawall and aims to inspire them with the musings of Vancouver residents throughout the ages. Then-and-now photographs of the city’s skyline will let us see Vancouver, a city in constant flux, through the eyes of the past. These photos are paired with poems and excerpts that allow us to bridge the gulf of time that separates us from those writing a century or more ago, to hear their thoughts and understand their world. This tour will help you see how others once experienced this city—the hopes and dreams they held when they first saw its gorgeous skies and the perils they might’ve encountered within.