Summer Spaces – Car-free Sundays across Vancouver

Car-free Sundays get green light from Vancouver >>

The city of Vancouver has recently approved four car free Sundays this summer.  The new initiative is part of the Summer Spaces proposal by the city of Vancouver.   (The official PDF report can be found at the city website).

The neighbourhoods which will be holding these Summer Spaces are Commercial Drive, Collingwood, Gastown, and Mount Pleasant.  Mount Pleasant and Commercial Drive have been the sites of very successful Car-Free Vancouver days for at least the past two years.  Gastown has seen its share of street shutdowns for cycling races or other special events.  Collingwood, however, is a first.  They have celebrated Collingwood Days (which is really only one day) in the past few years which involves a parade.  The parade doesn’t last very long, so the street closure is short-lived.

The following is an excerpt from the Administrative Report from the City of Vancouver.  The excerpt is a blurb about what each Summer Space is about.  I’ve also taken the details from Appendix C of the report and placed them with the corresponding blurbs.

1. Open Streets – Commercial Drive

Car Free Vancouver (CFV), with the support and participation of the Commercial Drive BIA pending ongoing consultation with members, has proposed a series of up to eight recurring community ‘street openings’ along Commercial Drive. CFV would serve as the primary coordinating body for the un-programmed street space by encouraging and, when needed, scheduling community use of the street. This approach allows community use and programming of the street to occur in a way that is ongoing and organic.

Site: Commercial Dr. between Venables St. & E. 1st Ave. (possibly expanding south to N. Grandview Hwy.)
Dates: up to 8 Sundays starting in early July
Time: 12pm-6pm

2. Building Welcoming and Vibrant Communities through Public Gathering Spaces

Collingwood Neighbourhood House (CNH) has proposed a series of up to five recurring open-air market events, along Vanness Avenue near the Joyce SkyTrain station, showcasing local performers and artisans and produce from multi-ethnic farmers. The Summer Spaces proposal is aimed at addressing concerns from neighbourhood residents, many of whom are recent immigrants, around feelings of social isolation and a lack of public meeting places.

Site: Approximately 100 metres on Vanness Ave. between Joyce St. & Rupert St.
Dates: up to 5 Sundays from late July to early August
Time: 10am-2pm

3. Gastown Farmers Market
Working in partnership, Vancouver Farmers Markets and Gastown BIA have proposed a new farmers market for August and September, having up to nine recurrences, along the Carrall Street Greenway between Cordova Street and Maple Tree Square, with the possibility of minor extension north along Carrall into a parking lot. This Summer Spaces proposal provides an opportunity to further support the local food system in an area with a growing residential population.

Site: 200 block Carral St. between Cordova St. & Maple Tree Square (with a minor extension north along Carrall into a parking lot, if needed)
Dates: Aug 2, 9, 16, 23, 30; Sept 6, 13, 20, 27
Time: 11am-3pm

4. Market 1886 – Our Past Is Our Future

The Mount Pleasant BIA (MPBIA) has put forward a proposal for a series of up to six street events, rotated on a weekly basis along three different sections of Main Street. The MPBIA aims to draw merchants, residents, youth, local community groups and visitors to participate in uniquely themed, minimally programmed, weekly events on the street. The series is built on the concept that the re-articulation of certain aspects of a life more simply lived, in a bygone era, will be key to our city’s future.

Site #1: Main St. between E. Broadway & E. 7th Ave.
Site #2: Main St. between E. 16th Ave. & E. 12th Ave.
Site #3: Main St. between E. 12th Ave & E. Broadway
Dates:  July 5, 12, & 19; August 9, 16 & 23
Time: 12pm-5pm

So if you enjoyed Car Free Vancouver or any of the other great festivals around town, then these additional Summer Spaces will fill your craving to take over the pavement.

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