Crowd of people attending our Heritage Reboot event, that included nominating sites to the Heritage Register

Nominate a site to the Heritage Register

We're updating the Vancouver Heritage Register!

We have received your nominations and our consultant is now in the process of reviewing them and will provide a report later in the year.

This will help us to update the Heritage Register and work on the Heritage Action Plan.

The Vancouver Heritage Register is a valuable record of our heritage

The Heritage Register is a list of about 2,200 sites with architectural or heritage value, such as:

  • Buildings and structures
  • Streetscapes
  • Landscape resources (parks and landscapes, trees, monuments, public works)
  • Archaeological sites

This list documents key examples of Vancouver’s heritage and is a planning tool to help manage our heritage resources.

While sites on the register aren't legally protected, they're acknowledged as Vancouver’s special places that link to our city's past and should be retained.

The Vancouver Heritage Register was formally adopted by City Council in 1994.

Themes for our Heritage Register

The following themes have been prepared to inform the Vancouver Heritage Register upgrade.

They'll be reviewed and updated as part of the Heritage Action Plan.

These themes will help us understand the heritage value of sites on the register and of sites you nominate.

Diagram of the national historic themes from the Parks Canada System Plan

Peopling the Land

  • Canada's Earliest Inhabitants
  • Migration and Immigration
  • Settlement
  • People and the Environment

Developing Economies

  • Hunting and Gathering
  • Extraction and Production
  • Trade and Commerce
  • Technology and Engineering
  • Labour
  • Communications and Transportation

Building Social and Community Life

  • Community Organizations
  • Religious Institutions
  • Education and Social Well-Being
  • Social Movements

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life

  • Learning and the Arts
  • Architecture and Design
  • Science
  • Sports and Leisure
  • Philosophy and Spirituality

Governing Canada

  • Politics and Political Processes
  • Government Institutions
  • Security and Law
  • Military and Defence
  • Canada and the World
Subtheme  Description 
First Nations  Addresses Vancouver’s rich and enduring history of the Northwest Coast First Nation peoples spanning more than 10,000 years
Coastal Geography Examines the unique geological, hydrological, and climatic events that underpin the evolution of Vancouver’s current form and its past and present patterns of development 
The Developing City Encompasses the settlement of Vancouver, including the development of the city’s neighbourhood enclaves and influences on settlement patterns up to the present day
Subtheme  Description 
Terminal City  Encompasses Vancouver’s role as a regional hub for communications and transportation

The story of Vancouver is intertwined with history of the CPR, an organization which has had a truly a profound effect in shaping the city's overall development, and whose influence continues to the present day.

Resource Extraction and Industrial Production Explores Vancouver’s early industrial development

Early development of Vancouver included large industrial concerns along the shore of Burrard Inlet and False Creek, followed by the establishment of entertainment districts, including Hogan’s Alley and the hotels, restaurants, and pubs in Gastown, Hastings Street, Granville Street, and later along Main Street.

Infrastructure and Transportation Addresses Vancouver’s transformation through the development and application of technological and engineering achievements, including transportation, communication, technological, and engineering advances and public works
Labour  Articulates the role of multicultural labourers in Vancouver’s economy 
Subtheme  Description 
Community Associations

Organizations were established that served many different interests, adding to the richness of community life across the city.

Fraternal Associations

In response to harsh conditions, there was often a need to develop groups of self-interest. In the Chinese community, these groups formed along family lines. Many in the European communities banded together to promote common goals and assist group members during adverse times.

Social Movements Addresses Vancouver’s significant pioneering role in environmental, social and political movements, and its continuing legacy for global and community action
Religious Institutions From the first establishment of the City, settlers brought their belief systems, and places of worship sprang up across the city. The diversity of sacred places grew as the city's population expanded, reflecting many different denominations and their evolution over time.
Education  Articulates the activities associated with teaching and learning by children and adults and encompasses both public and private education
Health Care  Focuses on activities and processes associated with the provision of health care services by the government or philanthropic organizations
City of Neighbourhoods  Examines the numerous social and cultural communities that were instrumental in the development and growth of Vancouver's neighbourhoods
Subtheme  Description 
Civic Institutions

Sites, people, and events notable in the political life of Vancouver are included under this subtheme, including the development of Vancouver’s municipal government.

Provincial and Federal Connections

Includes the development of the law courts and federally administered facilities such as post offices

Planning the City Focuses on the development of city planning in Vancouver

Encompasses the early boom years of the 20th century, when the City of Vancouver focused its planning efforts on safety issues such as fire and sanitation, the City Beautiful movement, the first Town Planning Commission, and the formalization of planning

Law, Order, and Security Highlights law enforcement, the development of the Fire Department, and national defence interests
Subtheme  Description 
Arts and Culture

Examines Vancouver’s cultural milieu, which developed from an imposed, rigid, homogeneous, British-dominated colonial cultural framework, to a home-grown expression that recognized the wide diversity of the city’s population

Architecture Focuses on senior government in various spheres, particularly the influence and connections between the federal and provincial level and the City of Vancouver.

Explores the development of Vancouver’s built environment, which represents a rapid and dramatic evolution of architecture, construction, form, style, and use of materials from rudimentary frontier settlement, to elaborate late Victorian architecture, an embrace of the Arts and Crafts and Neoclassical movements, renewed interest in Period Revival styles and the popularity of postwar contemporary design

Planning the City Focuses on the development of city planning in Vancouver

Encompasses the early boom years of the 20th century, when the City of Vancouver focused its planning efforts on safety issues such as fire and sanitation, the City Beautiful movement, the first Town Planning Commission, and the formalization of planning

Law, Order, and Security Highlights law enforcement, the development of the Fire Department, and national defence interests

Haywood Bandstand: on the register

Haywood BandstandThe Haywood Bandstand, located in Alexandra Park in the West End, is on the Heritage Register and is also a Municipally Designated heritage resource.

The Bandstand, constructed in 1914, is connected to the theme of Building a Coastal Culture and the subthemes of:

  • Arts and Culture, because it's an original venue for the musical performing arts
  • Architecture, for its Queen Anne design

Malkin Bowl: not on the register

Malkin Bowl concert venueThe Malkin Bowl, located Stanley Park, is not on the Heritage Register.

Malkin Bowl, constructed in 1934, is connected to the theme of Building a Coastal Culture and the subthemes of:

  • Arts and Culture, because it's a summer concert venue constructed during the Great Depression
  • Architecture, for its Art Deco style