#21: Hinge Park

“Innovative park with nature, fields, playground water feature and dog park all in one small area.”

#2 in Mount Pleasant

215 West 1st Avenue

For Kids

B+



For Adults

B-



Design

A-



Atmosphere

B+



Final Score

30.50


For a park barely a decade old, Hinge sure feels timeless. 

Part of that comes from the little touches of history in the park, namely the rusty submarine-looking bridge that crosses a creek and the railway ties at its southern end. 

Part of that comes from the wetland that takes up the southwest portion of the park — someone new to the city would scarcely believe it was so new, with the beavers and waterfowl that make their home in the area. 

Part of it comes from how lived-in the park feels, even though it was an industrial area transformed as part of the Olympic Village: it’s incredibly popular for the thousands of people who live in the neighbourhood and don’t have a larger nearby park, so it ends up serving a lot of different needs. 

And part of it comes from the sense of exploration the park affords: there are all sorts of little hills and rock circles and walkways over the wetland that give multiple options for getting to know the park.

It can not be emphasized enough how both gimmicky and wonderful the weird submarine tunnel is.

Oh right: there’s a dog park, and a playground with swings and climbing structures, and a big field with a gorgeous view of downtown Vancouver, all in a relatively small area. 

All of this helps explain why the park has been featured in plenty of websites and presentations focusing on urbanism and modern park design: it’s the most recent large park created by the city, one with a big $7 million budget, and they arguably made the most of it. 

One can nitpick. The structured play area is quite small (though the long water pump makes up for it when it’s open), there are much better dog areas and community gardens in other parks, and the main field area is scheduled to turn into an elementary school — while definitely needed, it will put a further stress on large accessible green space in the area. 

But a quick look at Hinge on virtually any day of the week, at any time, will see a bustling park of families and young adults, tourists and locals. And there’s not much more you can ask for.  

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