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Gastown Steam Clock undergoes repairs

October 8 2014

Gastown Steamclock

We will begin major repairs to the Gastown Steam Clock starting Wednesday, October 8, 2014.

To complete this work, we will temporarily remove the clock from the street corner at Cambie Street and Water Street and take it to the fabrication shop at Manitoba Yards.

Why we are doing this work

The mechanical moving parts of the Steam Clock’s device for loading the metal balls have worn over the last 37 years and can no longer be reliably maintained. Mechanical failures have been a common occurrence in the past year, and the proposed repairs to the ball loading device will restore reliability to the Steam Clock while maintaining its historical integrity.

When the clock is anticipated to return

The repairs coincide with the end of cruise ship and tourist season. Clock repairs will take approximately eight weeks, and we anticipate the clock will return by early December, in time for the Christmas season.

History of the clock

The Gastown Steam Clock has been enjoyed as a public art piece by residents and tourists alike since it was built in 1976 by horologist Ray Saunders. It was dedicated to the citizens of Vancouver on September 24, 1977. The clock also serves as a steam vent for Creative Energy Canada, which supplies the steam that sounds the whistles.