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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

EVENT: AIBC 2016 Architectural Walking Tours begin Canada Day


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Photo courtesy of the AIBC.

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Event: Architectural Walking Tours
Dates: July 1-August 31, 2016
Times: Thursdays to Mondays at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Admission: $10. Space is limited, so the public is invited to visit, email or call 604.683.8588 ext.325 or 1.800.667.0753 (toll free in B.C.) to book a tour today!

Did you know that the Steam Clock in Vancouver’s historic Gastown neighbourhood isn’t actually steam-powered? Learn about this and many other facets of B.C.’s largest city through the Architectural Institute of British Columbia’s (AIBC) popular Architectural Walking Tours, starting July 1. Six unique tours will run Thursdays to Mondays throughout July and August, starting on Canada Day!

“The AIBC is proud to offer Architectural Walking Tours of six Vancouver and three Victoria neighbourhoods. For locals and tourists alike, the tour concept has proven to be an engaging way to learn about the architectural, cultural and social histories of two major British Columbian cities,” says Mark Vernon, CEO of the AIBC.

Vancouver tours include Gastown, Chinatown, Downtown, Yaletown, the West End and Strathcona. Architectural Walking tour participants will experience:

  1. Gastown: Explore how building scale and street layout offer clues to the expansion and relocation of the downtown centre from Gastown to its current location. See how heritage restoration and preservation guidelines and initiatives set up in the 1970s have transformed and renewed this historical part of Vancouver.
  2. Chinatown: Stroll market streets, taking in retail, commercial and residential structures built by some of the founding merchants of this historic district.
  3. Downtown: Discover modern and contemporary architecture while traveling through Vancouver’s business district, home to British Columbia’s tallest buildings.
  4. Yaletown: Learn about how the City of Vancouver transformed this heavy industrial area from a contaminated wasteland into one of the trendiest and most vibrant neighbourhoods in Canada.
  5. The West End: Walk through a mix of historic buildings and explore architectural influences that have shaped this area over the decades. From Queen Anne style homes to 70s style post-modern residential high rises, this tour has it all.
  6. Strathcona: Experience Vancouver’s oldest and most diverse residential area. Strathcona has remained the city’s “hidden gem” for years. Learn how this historical area has survived and flourished over the years.

“Whether you’re looking to explore key Vancouver neighbourhoods or engage in an active and social learning opportunity suitable for all ages, the AIBC’s affordable and accessible Architectural Walking Tours are sure to heighten your appreciation of the built environment,” says Pauline Schipani-Deschryver, Lead Tour Guide with the AIBC.

Architectural Walking Tours are $10 and run throughout July and August. Tours are available Thursdays to Mondays at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. in Vancouver. Space is limited, so the public is invited to visit, email or call 604.683.8588 ext.325 or 1.800.667.0753 (toll free in B.C.) to book a tour today!

Tours begin in the lobby of The Architecture Centre at 440 Cambie Street, except for the West End tour (begins at Manhattan Apartments at 780 Thurlow Street) and the Strathcona tour (begins at the Strathcona Community Centre at 601 Keefer Street). The AIBC asks that participants arrive 15 minutes before departure time. A distance of 3 kilometres (2 miles) is covered over a period of 1.5 to 2 hours.


About the AIBC
The Architectural Institute of British Columbia (AIBC) is an independent, professional self-regulatory body established in 1920 by provincial statute (the Architects Act) with the mandate to regulate the profession of architecture on behalf of the public. For more information about the AIBC, please visit