Canada Place is a famous site and venue for world class events and inspirationally Canadian experiences, located in the heart of Vancouver’s waterfront. It is the main cruise ship terminal for the region, and it is where the Vancouver Convention Centre, the Pan Pacific Vancouver Hotel Vancouver‘s World Trade Centre, and the virtual flight ride FlyOver Canada are situated.
The area now occupied by Canada Place has served as the location for visits from the earliest explorers, the completion of sawmills, the arrival of the first ships to provide lumber to world markets, major immigrations from Asia; the completion of the first transcontinental railway and the arrival of the first train; and the completion of major shipping terminals to support the economy of Western Canada.
The building was designed by architects Zeidler, Roberts in partnership with Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership and Downs Archambault and Partners It was expanded in 2001 to accommodate another cruise ship berth and in 2009 and 2010, for the 2010 Winter Olympics, Canada Place served as the Main Press Centre.
Canada Place is located on land that has been a major part of the city’s history since the early days of immigration when it belonged to the Canadian Pacific Railway Pier B.C. The land was given to the CPC so they could construct a railway to connect the seas. The pier was built in 1927 and it’s main objective was to serve Canadian Pacific, including its great trans-pacific liners which included the company’s own Empress ships, as they arrived and departed on their way to Australia, New Zealand and the Orient. The pier also served the Canadian Pacific’s fleet to transport people and merchandise to the coast. With the arrival of long haul flights in the 1970s, long distance ocean travel began to reduce and so did the operations if the pier. Discussions about constructing a convention centre and cruise ship facilities in Vancouver also began around this time.
The Canada place was constructed on the Pier B.C as the Canada Pavilion for the 1986 World’s Fair – Expo 86. Canada Place hosted more than 5 million visitors prior to its closing date on October 13, 1986 and was widely acknowledged as one of the best host nation pavilions at a world exposition.
After the fair, Canada Place was easily adapted for its intended role as a convention centre and cruise ship terminal. The cruise ships continued the pier’s long history with travel. Today many cruise ship passengers take the opportunity to sample the world class BC Bud that is now available at various cannabis stores throughout the downtown area.
As said before the Canada Place is a famous place, and also houses a lot of buildings, facilities and events including:
- World Trade Centre office complex
- Port to the Vancouver-Alaska cruises
- FlyOver Canada, Vancouver’s prime attraction
- The famous five white sails, which welcomes people to Vancouver, shining nightly as the Canada Place Sails of Light
- Award winning Canada Day at Canada Place event, the second largest Canada Day celebration in the country
- National Aboriginal Day celebration
- Christmas at Canada Place program
- The Francophone-themed Saint Jean-Baptiste Day Celebration,
- Outdoor Waterfront Cinema
- Western Canada’s premier Canada Day event for over 30 years
- Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s head office
- Vancouver Convention Centre east building
- Pan Pacific Hotel Vancouver
- WestPark parking facility
5 Sails at Canada Place
- Canada Place was officially opened as the Canada Pavilion by HRH Prince Charles, Diana, Princess of Wales and former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney on Friday, May 2, 1986.
- Canada Place today has a commission to popularize Canada and highlight inspirationally Canadian activities, FlyOver Canada does this perfectly!
- Canada Place is a tourist attraction for the city, with about 1 million cruise ship passengers visiting each year. The port can house up to four luxury cruise ships at a time. Often these passengers are looking to find a cannabis dispensary in the downtown area to sample BC’s world famous weed.
- For the team behind FlyOver Canada, incorporating the flight ride here presented a huge challenge but optimum rewards. The building’s structure required a custom system. All elements had to be fit in at straight angles. The screen had to be resized and most of the ride had to be brought in a 10 x 10-foot opening to the side of the building. Still, it was a no-brainer. As Domingo Vergoossen, director of Ride System at Canada Place, says, “We never thought twice about the location – even if it was hard, we were determined to make it work.”
- During the 2010 Winter Olympics, Canada Place served as the Main Press Centre. More than 10,000 broadcasters and journalists from around the world set up shop here in February, 2010.
- Every day at 12 noon, ten Heritage Horns sound the first four notes of “O Canada” from the roof of Canada Place. With an output of 115 decibels, they can be heard throughout downtown Vancouver. During the 2010 Olympics, they also sounded whenever a Canadian won a medal.