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Park Board selects internationally renowned landscape architect for new Northeast False Creek waterfront park

November 30 2016

"This project is a legacy to the people of Vancouver for generations to come," said Park Board Chair Sarah Kirby-Yung.

After a process that invited proposals from around the world, the Vancouver Park Board has selected New York-based James Corner Field Operations (JCFO) to design the Creekside Park Extension in Northeast False Creek (NEFC) following removal of the Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts.

The firm designed New York City’s innovative High Line, 23 blocks of former elevated railway transformed into a linear park winding its way through Manhattan’s west side. The High Line is acclaimed for redefining public open space in modern cities and as a catalyst for community and inspiration to cities worldwide.

The Creekside Park Extension will be a significant new park in one of the last undeveloped waterfront areas in downtown Vancouver.

"This project is a legacy to the people of Vancouver for generations to come," said Park Board Chair Sarah Kirby-Yung. "When combined with the existing Andy Livingstone Park, Creekside Park, and Dunsmuir Connection, we are creating approximately 21 acres of new and renewed park space in the heart of the city. This will add vital green spaces and gathering places to the emerging neighbourhoods of Northeast False Creek, connecting them seamlessly with the waterfront and downtown.”

JCFO was chosen from a field of 14 top landscape architecture firms from Canada, the United States, Europe, and Asia.

James Corner Field Operations

“We are thrilled to be part of a project which presents a very exciting opportunity to connect existing and emerging Vancouver neighbourhoods to one another and to the water,” said JCFO founder, James Corner. “Our design will weave layers of history, community, and ecology into a rich fabric that will be unique to Northeast False Creek.”

James Corner will be in Vancouver today for his first working tour of the NEFC park site. He will be meeting Park Board staff and Park Design Advisory Group community members, and giving a presentation to Park Board commissioners.

First project in Vancouver

The Creekside Park Extension is James Corner’s first project in Vancouver, but not the first in the Pacific Northwest.

His firm is design lead for Seattle’s Central Waterfront project, a multi-year program to rebuild Seattle’s downtown waterfront following the removal of the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

In Vancouver, as in Seattle, JCFO is working at the forefront of an international trend of replacing aging infrastructure with a mix of public amenities and new development.

Among JCFO’s other notable design projects are:

  • London’s South Park Plaza at Queen Elizabeth Park
  • Santa Monica’s Tongva Park
  • Chicago’s Navy Pier
  • Cleveland’s Public Square
  • Philadelphia’s Race Street Pier
  • Hong Kong’s Salisbury Gardens and Tsim Tsa Tsui Promenade
  • Shenzhen province’s new city of Qianhai, a coastal home for three million people

In Vancouver, JCFO is partnering with local landscape architectural firm PWL Partnership, which designed Hinge Park in Southeast False Creek among other parks in the city. All other experts on the team are from Vancouver.

The contract with JCFO is for one year and valued at $875,000.

Learn about the Creekside Park Extension and NEFC Area Planning process