This attractive tent-like structure is a relic from Expo 86 -- that year's World's Fair. The city transformed an old cargo pier into a showcase intended to rival the Opera House in Sydney, Australia. You can decide for yourself if it succeeds. The shape of Canada place has been compared to a sailing ship, an insect, and a camping trip. Today it is home to a cruise ship terminal, a convention center, a hotel, and more.
While Canada Place is a marvel of modern glass, steel, and stone its history runs deep. This was the location where the Canadian Pacific Railway's first trans-continental rail line met the salt water of the Pacific Ocean.
Several decades later, the CPR built two piers at this location, and for nearly 30 years they helped move people and freight from across the nation to ports up and down both sides of the Pacific Ocean.
Eventually competition from other ports and other modes of transportation made this pier complex unnecessary, and in the 1950's it was closed. 20 years later, federal, provincial, and local governments put together a plan to turn the abandoned pier complex once again into a hub of activity. The Canada Harbour Place Corporation was founded, and on March 9, 1983 Queen Elizabeth II arrived in Vancouver Harbour on the Britannia to mark the start of the construction. On May 2, 1986 Prince Charles officially opened the new complex.
For the 2010 winter Olympic games, the complex served as the main media center for the international press corps descending on the city. To help with the hoards of journalists, photographers, and others coming to the city to cover the games, a new convention center was built just to the west. It will be the international broadcast center.
- Hotel rooms: 504
- Cruise lines served: 16 (2005)
- Cruise ship sailings: 272 (2005)
- Cruise ship passengers: 910,172 (2005)
- Parking spaces: 770
- 1925: The Canadian Pacific Railway began work on a set of piers to handle freight from the Orient.
- 1927: Canadian Pacific piers B and C were completed.
- 1955: The shipping terminal closed.
- 1978: Plans were started for the construction of a hotel, cruise ship, and convention center complex at this location.
- 1982: Canada Harbour Place Corporation was formed.
- March, 1983: Construction began.
- February 5, 1984: The first "sail" was hoisted into place.
- July 6, 1984: This building topped out.
- October 27, 1984: The last sail was hoisted into place.
- December, 1985: Construction finished.
- May 2, 1986: The complex was officially opened by Britain's Prince Charles.
- May 2, 1986: The Canada Pavilion at Expo 86 opened.
- 1986: The Pan Pacific Hotel Vancouver opened.
- July 4, 1987: The Vancouver Trade & Convention Centre officially opened.
- February 1, 2000: Construction began on a cruise ship terminal expansion.
- May 1, 2002: The cruise ship terminal expansion was completed.
- 2010: A companion convention center was completed to the west of this facility to serve as the international broadcasting center for the 2010 Winter Olympics.
- Architecture firm: Zeidler Roberts Partnership
- Architecture firm: Musson Cattell Mackey
- Architecture firm: Downs Archambault
- This is the location where the first trans-Canadain railroad met the Pacific.
- This was the first permanent marine terminal built by the Canadian Pacific Railway.
- The building's "sails" are actually aTeflon-coated fabric made of fiberglass.
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