Today, we focused on the transportation side of Vancouver, particularly its skytrains. We started the tour at the Greyhound station, where Michelle gave us a brief history of the area around it and the population that had settled around there. The Chinese settlements, for example, have always been around, but their continual settlement was caused by the building of railways and the need for works. While we were still at the park, we got to ask some questions relating to the transportation system of Vancouver. The answer for the honor system of the Skytrain was somewhat surprising. Apparently, builders don’t want to make people pay for a new innovation they thought was dangerous; it would decrease the popularity of the trains. We got to the beginning of the Expo 86, the 1986 World’s Fair.
Nat gave us a brief history of Chinatown in Vancouver and the people that fought against the redevelopment of the Strathcona neighborhood. The SPOTA, Strathcona Property Owners and Tenants Associations, did walking tours in order to show people how their neighborhood really looked like. They also held Chinese Banquets to bring in officials and people.
Eventually we reached the Metrotown station. First thing Michelle point out was that this area around Metrotown stations used to be a strawberry farm. Though I could not find the relevance of this fact at first, eventually it explained itself. As we walk down one of the blocks around Metrotown, we saw that the blocks were endless. However, condos and affordable housing are being built to make Metrotown more sustainable.