Stanley Park Seawall Closure November 2008

Comments 5 by Rebecca Bollwitt

Millions of dollars have been poured into reshaping Stanley Park after windstorms in 2006 devastated the park, money has been spent on everything from solidifying the cliffs that hang above the seawall to making trails safe. However, $9 million later and the seawall closed today due to a mudslide.

A section of Vancouver’s Stanley Park seawall, shut down because of a landslide, is expected to reopen Saturday.

A landslide approximately seven metres wide came down near Third Beach Thursday, blocking a portion of the seawall between Third Beach and the Lions Gate Bridge.

Contractors began assessing the damage today. Crews from the Vancouver Park Board will come in Monday to haul the debris away. [CTV]

Yep, still, I know.

Ready to re-open?

For a bit of back-story… in December of 2006 a great wind storm tore through they city’s most prized natural wonder and it’s been in a rebuilding and replanting phase ever since (you can browse John’s archives or mine for coverage of the storm in 2006). My photos of the park are available in my Flickr set. [Miss604]

It took months for the park to fully reopen after 2006 and the seawall has been closed a few times since that initial storm. The last time I checked, the portion of the walkway in the photo below still had not been fixed – almost two years later.

Still busted

Time and time again I have commented on the (slow) progress of the Stanley Park rehabilitation.

With the park and the seawall being one of, if not the most used and beloved attractions and resources in our city, I think they deserve a little more attention – the parking lots for tourists’ buses can be put on hold in order to make the park safe, don’t you think?

5 Comments  —  Comments Are Closed

  1. Jeph PerroFriday, November 14th, 2008 — 5:37pm PST

    This closure may ruin my group’s Saturday run around the park. 🙁

    Don’t forget that on top of money from city taxes, people actually donated a lot of money to restore the park after the 2006 windstorm.

  2. BradleyFriday, November 14th, 2008 — 5:50pm PST

    There’s no doubt the storm of ’06 left Stanley Park in much-altered state. How much it deserves to be ‘fixed’ remains a question.
    I saw the park a couple months after the storm. Certainly, in some notable areas, there was some great displays of natural catastrophic incidence. If you believed the media reports at the time, it sounded like the entire park was a ruin. Fact is, this stuff happens all the time out in the bush.
    Public safety is an issue. You can’t invite people to an area to enjoy and then have some natural hazard drop on their heads or the ground drop out below their feet. Issues like that should be attended to.
    As for the rest of it, how much money are you going to spend? Put things in perspective.
    The city of Kamloops has lost as many as 30,000 trees to the pine beetle on public and private lands. (Actually, I don’t have an up-to-date number on this. It’s probably more.)
    Other interior communities have been hit the same. It’s tough for these people to get excited about replacing a few hundred in Stanley Park when nobody outside their own community cares about their trees.
    Next time it happens in the park, attend to the safety concerns and infrastructure and leave the rest to rot (as it will in that climate)and allow the forest to deal with it as it may.

  3. Miss604Friday, November 14th, 2008 — 5:55pm PST

    @ Bradley, they have left a lot, which makes me happy to see. Although many of the trails were unsafe for quite a while – I can’t complain about timelines really, I have no idea of the true scope (although I’ve walked every inch of that park too many times to count). It is the matter of safety, and yes, I would prefer they closed the seawall to get it done, but I’m just hoping that after all this time already given, and the millions or dollars, that we could have something safe and something that won’t crumble into the sea with every storm.

  4. Derek K. MillerSaturday, November 15th, 2008 — 3:26pm PST

    No doubt the storm and associated loss of trees and other damage destabilized some of the slopes much further than they have been for many decades. That probably couldn’t be fully prevented (if at all) without spraying all the steep zones with concrete and covering it with metal-fence sheeting or something, as you see on the Sea-to-Sky Highway.

    And I doubt many Vancouverites or tourists would like to see a large number of Stanley Park slopes coated in cement. It’s clear from the geology and geography of much of the west side of the park that, without the seawall, it would be a naturally eroding set of cliffsides. Indeed, it still is. Even if that area has been made as safe as possible after the 2006 storm, my guess is that slides are still going to be more common for many years to come.

  5. vancouver limousineThursday, November 20th, 2008 — 11:25pm PST

    Agree 2006 did a lot of damage to the park.

    We found out of the slide when we took a group on a tour of the park. hope the city is able to fix the seawall.

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