“It’s not Stanley park but it certainly is peaceful, sunny, and not over crowded.”
#1 in Killarney
2750 East Kent Avenue
Small but subtle ways the south side of the city gets less attention than the north, Vol. 384: consider all the elaborate names for waterfront parks next to English Bay/Burrard Inlet/False Creek. And then consider the two large parks that interact with the mighty Fraser are called “Fraser River Park” and “Riverfront Park”.
But a lack of attention to the name is contrasted to the serious attention put into Riverfront Park.
Spanning about 800 metres of land right on the river (duh), the park effectively has four separate stages. One is the longer walking trail that continues from Gladstone-Riverside — a nice walk next to old train tracks interspersed with a few water views, with plenty of benches to sit and relax.
The second stage is the main park area — a mid-sized field, good enough for casual soccer games and the like, with an impressive amount of covered seating. There’s also a community garden, a small older playground, and some tennis and basketball courts. By itself, it’s an above-average neighbourhood park, but add in the waterfront views and the appeal is obvious.
Then the path starts up again, and we soon enter the third stage — technically not in the park, but rather a large field owned by the city that could become a school or childcare centre in the future. For now though, it’s an additional bit of large field space in a part of the city that lacks it.
And finally, we come to the fourth area at the end — a wooden boardwalk that juts out into the marshy area at the edge of the water, and a smaller playground with a fun wooden shipwreck theme for 3-7 year olds. It’s all a bit disjointed, but all excellent stuff for a city to have in one place.
Built a couple decades before Vancouver started developing the River District in earnest, Riverfront has gained a reputation as a hidden gem, based on being one of the quieter waterfront green areas in the city.
That is changing — and will continue as thousands more flow into the neighbourhood — but the park was built to fit a lot of people, and so will continue to be well-loved in the decades to come.