Stanley Park

STANLEY PARK, 4.05 sq km, in downtown VANCOUVER, is the second-largest urban park in Canada (after Nose Hill Park in Calgary). Originally inhabited by FIRST NATIONS people, the park underwent LOGGING during the early days of white settlement. After BC became a colony, the land was set aside as a government reserve for military purposes. It was conveyed to the city for use as a park in 1887 and officially opened on 27 Sept 1888. It is named for Lord Stanley, gov gen from 1888 to 1893. A mixture of developed parkland and natural forest, the park has been called "half savage, half domestic" and is the most popular recreational space in the city. It is surrounded by water on 3 sides and encircled by the seawall, an 8.5-km walkway that took 60 years to complete. Other park features include BROCKTON POINT, where a LIGHTHOUSE has operated since 1890; the NINE O'CLOCK GUN, installed in 1894; Totem Pole Park, a collection of TOTEM POLES from coastal villages; Brockton Oval, once the major sports facility in the Lower Mainland; LUMBERMAN'S ARCH, the site of a First Nations village when the first settlers arrived in Vancouver; Prospect Point, with its panoramic view of LIONS GATE BRIDGE and the North Shore Mts; Siwash Rock; the Stanley Park Zoo; LOST LAGOON; and the VANCOUVER AQUARIUM.
Reading: Jean Barman, Stanley Park's Secret, 2005.