“There is never a dull moment in this park.”
#3 in Downtown
1199 West Cordova Street
“There are 39 great parks in Vancouver” is a bold and silly claim to make, but this is a bold and silly exercise, so let’s elaborate.
There were 39 parks in our scoring that got at least 29 points, and a certain point it became pretty clear that anything with at least 29 points was the type of place we would actively want to come back to. Some of these parks were solid across the board — plenty to do with no weak aspects — while some of them had one or two special calling cards.
Harbour Green is definitely in the latter category: there’s no playground and there’s not really any opportunity to play sports, unless you’re doing something relatively small on the long thin stretch of grass between the seawall and the condos.
But it’s that long stretch of grass and seawall, the eastern tip of Stanley Park beckoning in the distance, the glass towers to the south and floating Chevron gas station to the north, the Convention Centre to the east and boats on the west, the bikes whizzing by and the tourists taking selfies, all of it comes together in this expression of pure Vancouverness, which is to say uniquely beautiful, used as a generic modern waterfront in untold film productions, and partly funded by developers.
Still. It’s a beautiful view. The long stretch of grass and benches gives lots of flexibility for how you use the space. In the middle there’s a spray park and restaurant, and walkways further from the ocean provide some interesting plants and artwork.
Harbour Green is also home to a very well done and fairly expansive memorial to the Komagata Maru incident, and a quirky art piece of an old boat shed raised ten feet in the air.
If that feels like a weird whiplash of things in a single park, well, Vancouver is a weird whiplash of a city.
It’s mostly great though. So is Harbour Green.