About

Overview

The Places That Matter Community History Resource website is an information-rich website that expands on the original Places That Matter (PTM) plaque program – a project created in 2011 to celebrate Vancouver’s 125th anniversary as an incorporated city. PTM has helped recognize 125 community-nominated sites, covering some of the people, places and events that tell the story of Vancouver’s history. Each of the 125 sites is profiled with their own webpage exhibiting the original plaque text, historic research, oral histories, contemporary and historic photos, as well as opportunities for community contribution.

The aim is to further engage residents of Vancouver by providing an accessible digital space for sharing information, while telling inclusive stories about these significant places. We hope this website will appeal to Vancouver residents, newcomers, visitors, students, and researchers, who are interested in local cultural history. Users will access it as a resource guide and as a tool to increase awareness about our city’s past and present.

The Places That Matter Community History Resource was made possible by generous support from our partners. Thanks to Heritage BC this project was partially funded by the Heritage Legacy Fund for Awareness and Education projects. Thanks to a grant from the Vancouver Historical Society, we were able to complete online research for 85 sites that received plaques. And, thanks to in-kind sponsorship from our web developers Split Mango Media for their continued support.

 

 

 

We welcome comments, feedback, quotes, stories, information and questions in our “submit your story” form. Your contributions will help shape the webpage and its content. Thank you for your online submissions, via the “submit your story” section. We do reserve the right to edit, modify and omit content received.

Please note that the current list of 125 sites is still being worked on. 86 have been completed and received plaques. The remaining 39 include sites that are receiving plaques, some that will be hosted online, and other sites to be determined through additional community votes. We will announce updates as they progress. The MAP page shows some of what has been determined and some which continue to be researched from the original 125 list.

If you are interested in learning more about the original plaque project, criteria for site selections, voting and new sites. Please visit here or email Jessica Quan, Special Projects Coordinator.

 

History

Since 2011, we have been celebrating our Places That Matter sites in free public gatherings around Vancouver. Our presentations have involved collaborating with site owners, local community groups, individuals, family members, various levels of government and the general public. We’ve loved sharing our stories and histories with people and places from every corner of the city.

2011

  • Stanley Park Rock Garden on October 23rd
  • Out for Lunch Noon Hour Series on December 16th

2012

  • Penthouse Nightclub on April 5th
  • Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden on April 24th
  • Original Jewish Community Centre on April 25th
  • Gospel Mission on April 28th
  • Benny’s Market on June 3rd
  • Ace Cycles on June 9th
  • Lakeview Disaster on June 16th
  • Cambie Heating and Plumbing Neon Sign on June 20th
  • Elms of East 6th Avenue on June 22nd
  • Ruth Morton Baptist Church on June 24th
  • Historic Joy Kogawa House on June 26th
  • Collingwood Neighbourhood House on June 27th
  • Kensington Park View on July 1st
  • Dayton Boots Factory on July 13th
  • Vancouver Folk Music Festival on July 13th
  • The Lee Building on July 15th
  • Choklit Park on July 16th
  • King Edward High School Wall (VGH) on July 25th
  • VPL Collingwood Branch on July 26th
  • 2300 Balaclava Block of 100 years old Craftsman style houses on July 28th
  • Strathcona Community Gardens on August 1st
  • Del Mar Inn on August 2nd
  • Canada Place on August 3rd
  • Former City Hall Sites (Four Sisters Co-op) on August 12th
  • Arbutus Grocery (Arbutus Coffee) on August 19th
  • Kitsilano Neighbourhood House on August 25th
  • Davie Street Village on September 8th
  • The Unitarian Church on September 9th
  • The Gathering Place on September 9th
  • First Sikh Temple on September 15th
  • Mountain View Cemetery on September 15th
  • Loretta Lynn and the Chicken Coop on September 16th
  • Jericho Arts Centre on September 22nd
  • First United Church on October 10th
  • Cyclone Taylor Arena (Kerrisdale Arena) on October 13th
  • Former Point Grey Municipal Hall (Kerrisdale Community Centre) on October 13th
  • Hastings Race Course on October 14th
  • Beatrice Lennie Reliefs (Shaughnessy Hospital) on October 19th
  • Trout Lake on October 27th
  • Walter and Mary Lee Chan House on November 3rd
  • Spencer’s Department Store (Harbour Centre – SFU Campus) on November 7th
  • Vancouver Free University (The CULTCH) on November 26th
  • Livestock Building, Hastings Park on December 1st
  • The Railway Club on December 8th
  • Bloedel Conservatory on December 15th
  • Burrard View Park (St James’ Cottage Hospice) on December 16th

2013

  • China Creek Cycle Track on February 6th
  • Hogan’s Alley on February 24th
  • Russian Community Centre on March 23rd
  • Arts Club Theatre Company original site (Vancity Film Theatre) on April 3rd
  • Punjabi Market on April 13th
  • Gibby’s Field on May 3rd
  • Nellie Yip Quong House on May 25th
  • Celtic Cannery on June 8th
  • Maple Grove Park Stumps on June 15th
  • The Western Front on June 16th
  • Save on Meats on June 25th
  • Expo Legacy- Science World on June 26th
  • The First Gas Station in Canada on June 29th
  • Lions Gate Bridge on July 17th
  • WISE Hall on August 9th
  • Arbutus Corridor on August 24th
  • Shakespeare Garden on August 25th
  • Pacific Coliseum on August 28th
  • Wooden Roller Coaster on August 28th
  • Nat Bailey Stadium on August 29th
  • First City Hospital (Easy Park) on October 9th
  • Smilin’ Buddha Cabaret on December 4th

2014

  • Original Border of Vancouver at Nanaimo Street on February 2nd
  • Canron Building on February 23rd
  • Burrard Skytrain StationArt Phillips Park on April 24th
  • VanDusen Botanical Garden on May 22nd
  • Sunset Beach Park on May 27th
  • Major Matthews House on June 12th
  • Robson Square on June 20th
  • The Commodore Ballroom on November 26th

2015

A series of 5 sites on West Hastings Street were celebrated on June 26th

  • “Canada’s Magnificent Pacific Harbour”
  • Along the Bluff
  • It’s a Parade!
  • Financial District
  • Tourism

2016

  • Temple Sholom on October 23rd

2017

  • Francophone Village on September 30th

Vancouver Heritage Foundation

Vancouver Heritage Foundation is a registered charity supporting the conservation of heritage buildings and structures in recognition of their contribution to the city’s economy, sustainability, and culture.

VHF does this by:

  • Developing practical tools, information and incentives to help in the successful conservation of heritage buildings and structures.
  • Creating opportunities to access and learn about Vancouver’s heritage buildings like our annual Heritage House Tour and Vancouver Special House Tour, plus regular walking tours, lectures, special tours and events around the city.
  • Fundraising in the public and private sectors to build an endowment that will protect our built heritage into the future.
  • Promoting relationships that support heritage conservation.

Please Share Your Places That Matter Stories With Us.

Why does this place matter to you? We want to hear all about it. Share your connection to one, two or more of our Places That Matter. If you've visited a site, or have old photos of it, please send it to us!

Submit a story to add to the project or send us a question or comment. We'll be in touch about adding your story to the webpage. Thank you!