Couple standing next to small lake in Vancouver.

Access to Nature

Improving access to green spaces—like parks, community gardens, and greenways—builds the community and improves the health of residents.

Read about the:

Our goal: Vancouver residents will enjoy incomparable access to green spaces, including the world's most spectacular urban forest
Our targets: Ensure that every person lives within a 5 minute walk of a park, greenway, or other green space by 2020; restore or enhance 25ha of natural areas between 2010 and 2020
Our targets: Plant 150,000 additional trees in the city between 2010 and 2020, and increase canopy cover to 22% by 2050

Progress we've made so far

Access to Nature
Trees Planted
Natural Space
Tree Canopy
Access to Nature Chart
Hover on data points for more information on that year's performance.
To learn more about this metric, see the 'How We Measure Success' section below.
Note: Our next Tree Canopy survey will be conducted in 2018.

Reaching our targets will require planting more trees on our streets and in our backyards and public spaces, as well as adding more green space to our existing neighbourhoods. Our Urban Forest Strategy helps guide this work.

  • 5.1 - Complete the new park at Yukon Street and 17th Avenue.
  • 5.2 - Acquire four hectares of park land at Cambie Street and the Fraser River.
  • 5.3 - Realize a new ~10 hectare park system in East Fraserlands.
  • 5.4 - Strategically expand private property, street, and park tree planting.
  • 5.5 - Create a new inventory system for trees on City land.
  • 5.6 - Update tree management plans, planting standards, and best practices.
  • 5.7 - Develop additional policies and decision-making criteria to retain healthy, mature trees.

The metrics rely on our:

  • Count of the total area of green space
  • Total number of trees planted within Vancouver
  • Total hectares of natural space restored or enhanced
  • Aerial mapping to determine canopy cover across the city

These metrics are maintained by the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation. 
 

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Initiatives that are helping us reach our goal and targets

Vancouver Park Board wants nature in the city, not an urban jungle

Park Board has approved a comprehensive plan to increase the size and quality of Vancouver’s natural areas including forests, wetlands, streams, shorelines, and meadows.

Urban Forest Strategy

Vancouver's Urban Forest Strategy provides tools for growing and maintaining a healthy, resilient urban forest for future generations.

Vancouver Bird Strategy

The Vancouver Bird Strategy works to create conditions for native birds to thrive in Vancouver.

Official City Bird

After three weeks of campaigning, Vancouverites voted the Anna's Hummingbird as Vancouver's official city bird.

Hastings Park / PNE Master Plan

Hastings Park / PNE Master Plan: The Fair in the Park — a 30-year initiative to transform the Hastings Park of today into a greener, year-round destination for park use, culture, sport, recreation, and fun.

City announces Treekeepers program to grow Vancouver’s urban forest

Residents in Vancouver now have a new way to support the City of Vancouver’s goal to be the greenest city in the world by 2020, with the launch of the Treekeepers Program, which encourages residents and businesses to plant more trees on their property.

Greenways for walking and cycling

We design and build safe, nature-rich paths that encourage you to explore Vancouver without using your car through the Greenways program.