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Harry

The Residential Areas of Vancouver

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Harry

This one is for Neevens, who has expressed an interest in Port Moody. When I arrived in Vancouver, the Real Estate agents in that area really tried to sell to me and we were very interested. We deicded on Deep Cove for reasons that had nothing to do with comparisons between Deep Cove and Port Moody. I thought Port Moody was great.

My friend, Owen, who settled in Vancouver 10 years ago, has provided the following pictures and the little write up that follows:

Port Moody

Port Moody is quite a small place, the southern shore of the inlet being taken up by Rocky Point park, a cedar mill and a sulphur depot. Rocky point park is one of my favourite places in the lower mainland since it is not developed enough to attract throngs of loud people. I has an old open air pool, a boat launch and lots of bike/walk/rollerblade trails. The guy who taught me to rollerblade runs an ice cream shop and rollerblade rental in the park and there a couple of other quaint concessions like Pajos Cafe who are renowned for their fish and chips (although I am still trying to figure out why).

The trails wind round the eastern end of the inlet, which is a tidal mud flat and bird sanctuary, to the northern side of Port Moody which is even less developed. We often sail from the south side boat launch to the north side where we picnic at Old Orchard park or the Old Mill site (which my daughter has named Pyramid Island). At low tide the water gets quite shallow in places and even my very shallow boat touches the bottom. It's a good year round place to visit but obviously sailing and rollerblading is not favoured in the winter.

There are 3 other major parks on the northern side in the neighbouring district of Anmore (Belcarra, Sasamat lake and Buntzen Lake), all within 20 minutes drive through winding forested terrain. Each of these parks are complete gems in their own right offering hiking, picnicking, swimming and boating in a setting reminiscent of the eastern Transvaal.

A bulk of the housing is on the north shore side and there are a mix of condos, older houses, waterfront properties and some large places up the hill in a newer Parklane Development. Port Moody has a very small tax-base and only few shops/industries several of which are cottage industries or art shops etc. We live right up the mountain on the western border of Coquitlam - two sub-divisions over is Port Moody. Port Moody shares Coquitlam's major shopping district and as such is very well supplied with retail and other services but these are not directly in Port Moody so the major commercialization is avoided.

Port Moody is well situated for Burnaby and Downtown access due to the Barnet Highway and the West Coast Express. It's about 35 minutes to central Burnaby and 40 minutes to downtown. The trains only run morning & evening and get one downtown in around 35 minutes.

In my opinion Port Moody is one of the best kept secrets in the lower mainland.

The first picture shows the northern shore of the Inlet, and the second shows the southwestern one. This is a result of a curvature in the Inlet at that point. You can see Burnaby Mountain in the background, essentially due west...the sea being directly behind it.

portmoody3.jpg

portmoody4.jpg

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Harry

It would be really neat if folks who live in Vancouver at present, would be so kind as to place some postings here about the residential areas where they live. The hope is to give folks on the other side of the Earth an idea of these different parts of Vancouver. Some pictures would be really great.

Etienne, Digin, Charlene, Sponger....to name but a few...could you folks possibly help?

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Neeven

Harry, thanks so much for remembering my interest in Port Moody. It does look quaint indeed and definitely worth considering. When I arrive in Seattle, I'll plan with the friend with whom I'm staying where we should head the weekend he drives us North. I'm very much at his mercy but, in his words, "Port Moody has a nice ring to it."

What I would like to ask of everyone is where I might find short-term (a week or fortnight at most) self-catering accommodation from the beginning of May. It doesn't have to be in Port Moody or its immediate environs. And, if any of you or your acquaintances needs a housesitter over the summer, Shamin and I shall be happy to oblige (he says, tongue-in-cheek). Needless to say, a more mature (we're 39 and 29, respectively) and professional (an economist and a forex officer? c'mon) couple you'd be hard-pressed to find to tend your home in your absence.

I thought I'd make all of you nostalgic for the warm weather we've been enjoying by telling you that it is now 23h58 (I do hope the Canucks are used to the 24-hr clock) and I've just come out of the pool!

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digin

The West End/English Bay

The West End is one of North America's most densely populated areas - some 40 000 people live in only 200 hectares of space. 75% of the population live in apartments, and the bulk of residents are couples and singles in their 20s/30s without children. The most compelling reason to live in the West End is that you are close to the Vancouver CBD (in fact, a third of all people in the West End walk to work!), Stanley Park and a number of shops/restuarants/clubs.

My great love for the West End is its diversity: To give you an example, I sat down with a couple of my friends the other day at a bar, and in that party of eight we managed to work out that we spoke 13 languages fluently between us, and had lived in 18 different countries before Canada (most of the party had lived in at least 2 countries).

The English Bay side (near Denman / Davie Streets) of the West End is the unpretentious side, the more upmarket areas being the Coal Harbour (Robson street) side. Unlike a lot of suburban Canada, I find people a lot more relaxed in the West End - much more informal meetings - it's not uncommon to just drop in on people here.

You've got to be a bit of an outdoor activity junkie to fit in here - most of the activities revolve around Stanley Park - and Cypress Mountain is real easy to reach from the West End for ski-nuts.

One of the other great West End inventions is car-sharing: it's essentially a club of some 900 members who use 90 cars spread out all over the West End (and a couple of other areas of Vancouver and the islands). You rent cars at $1.75 an hour or $21 for the day plus a small gas mileage charge. If you work in the West End or on the Skytrain route, it's a great way to save money: we use a car about 6 times a month, so our total car costs come to less than $180 - way less than owning a car.

There are some downsides to the West End: Firstly, all your suburban friends struggle to find parking whenever they visit you. Secondly, there is a reasonable amount of petty crime with many homeless people living on the streets and in the Park, though the West End has suprisingly few violent crimes (its pretty safe to walk around till 1am in the morning - and that includes the non-lit lanes). Lastly, you need to accept the intrusion of tourists during the summer, but for a Cape Town boy used to the Vaalies this is nothing new to me. Now I get to make disparaging remarks about Americans instead! :ilikeit:

PS. Have a look at: Vancouver Community Profiles

Edited by Harry

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Guest Guest_Etienne

West Vancouver

The North Shore consists mainly of four "communities" - Deep Cove on the East on Indian Arm, North Vancouver (middle and East) and West Vancouver which stretches from Capilano Road (roughly from Lions Gate Bridge) west to Horseshoe Bay, which is right on the Howe Sound. Within these districts are various municipal authorities. Horseshoe Bay is very often deemed part of West Van, even round the Sound to Lions Bay. Further than Lions Bay is Poreau Cove, Furry Creek, Britannia and then Squamish, right at the top end of the Sound.

ns.jpg

Also considered in this area would be Bowen Island, which has a number of people commuting to Vancouver daily for work and school. I know a few people who live there and would not move for the world. We have friends who moved from Bowen to West Van and then back again because they were just terribly misrable NOT being on the island.

There is so much to say about the West side of the North Shore, but I'll limit my comments to West Vancouver. We live in Caulfeild, which is the western-most area before Horeshoe Bay. On the map above, from the green maple leave indicating highway 1 to the area shown as Whytecliff. Like most other areas on the North Shore, it is quite hilly and there are very few flat neighbourhoods. And I'm not talking about a flat street or two. This presents both a problem but also lends to some of the beauty of the area. Kids cannot bike to school or the local shop, but views are amazing.

I have posted these before in other threads, but they really fit here also. This is a recent photo of Caulfeild. At the bottom is Eagle Harbour. Bowen in the top with the entrance (eastern) in the middle.

7.jpg

This is Horseshoe Bay out over the Sound:

hb.jpg

I'll get more pics and post them. A Great source for photos of Horseshoe Bay and surrounding area is the picture galaries of the marina there. See Marina Web page. There are also amazing pics of the wildlife and Howe Sound - go check it out.

We live in West Van because my work is in Dundarave, West Van. Dundarave is a little area of little, mostly mom-and-pop shops, eateries and coffee bars. Basically just one street - Marine, which runs from Deep Cove (as Dollarton Highway) through to Horseshoe Bay - and one block wide (between 24th and 25th Streets).

The North Shore is, on average, a little wetter than the rest of Vancouver because it lies against the Coastal Mountains. In turn, we are very close to three excellent ski mountains - Cypress (west), Grousse (middle) and Seymour (east). If you are a skier, this is heaven. We are also closer to Whistler, rated one of the top ski destinations in North America.

Schools are excellent, if different than what I was used to in SA, but that's a whole new thread ;) Business is concentrated to the East - Ambleside, from Lions Gate bridge and a few blocks west of that. Caulfeild has a little strip mall with a couple eateries, doctors, vet, little hardware place, Pharmasave, liquor store (or else we would not have moved here :P ) and an expensive Safeway. The Safeway story is quite interesting - the 'community' did not want a 'cheap' store here so they named it "Someplace Special", upped the decor inside and increased the prices. But it's a Safeway. Go figure.

More later. If you have any specific questions I'd be please to answer them for you.

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Harry

Deep Cove

I know there are quite a few ex-SA folks living on the North Shore of Vancouver to the East of the Second Narrows Bridge (District of North Vancouver rather than City of North Vancouver), so I am going to confine my attentions to my own suburb/village of Deep Cove. I have presented a phototour of Deep Cove elsewhere.

On Etienne's map above, Deep Cove is situated above and to the right of the last "y" in Mt Seymour Parkway. You will find it right at the right hand end of the North Shore. That piece of blue seawater, sticking in westwards(!) into the land, is the actual Cove of Deep Cove. I provide a picture below of that cove.

cove.jpg

The distance to the Second Narrows bridge is about 8km and will take you between 8 and 10 minutes to do most mornings. I prefer to take the slightly longer and slower Dollarton Highway, which is, for most of its distance, a simple two lane road. It goes for about 1km through the Tsleil-Waututh reservation where one has to do 40kph.

Deep Cove has no supermarkets. These are either in Dollarton to the south, about 2km away, or on top of the hill in Indian River to the west, also about 2km away. We live within 5 minute's walk of the doctor, the dentist, the coffee shop, the Village Theatre and the marina and within about 10 minute's walk of the Raven Pub, the Music Shop (very important for my guitar) and the little village car workshop that eveyone here supports. There is even a little Home Hardware hardware shop. Our high school is Seycove Secondary and we also have a rather nice Primary school. The nice thing about Seycove is its rather smaller classes.

The Real Estate people love to describe Deep Cove as eclectic. There is no such thing as a typical Deep Cove house. They vary from multi-million dollar palaces to very small cottages. Like all the areas around here, there are loads of paved (and sometimes lit) footpaths through the forests between streets and between suburbs. This is one of the nicer things in this part of town. Mt Seymour 's ski-slopes "hang over" Deep Cove and may be reached by going past the nearest Safeways supermarket up Mt Seymour Rd. We have a fire station very close by, but no Mountie Office. Panorama Rd runs all along the northern shore of the cove, with beautiful houses, beautifully situated over the water. In the southern side is a rather high hilly peninsula with some very high priced houses. At least two houses against that hill have elevators going down to their private docks.

We are situated at the very western boundary of Deep Cove on the east facing slope with the forest against our back....so we wake up to the sunrise every day, but the sun disappears at 3pm in summer here and at 1pm in winter. Many people simply cannot handle that aspect of Deep Cove and flee to more sunny parts. For this they usually have to then contend with wind and longer commutes.

Deep Cove has a true village feel to it, and one feels it the moment you enter it. After a day of arguing with lawyers in different countries, it is a true pleasure coming home to the village with its bears and raccoons and skunks, and now even coyotes. It is equally nice going to the Raven Pub (an institution around these parts) on Friday nights where Canadians are exteremely loud and raucous...unlike the normally quiet and careful behaviour.

In summer, we have live music on "The Village Green" (Panorama Park, down by the marina). In winter we have bonfires and music for the Carol ship event and for the Polar Plunge. See the picture below.For a Real Estate view of Deep Cove, look here.

plunge3.jpg

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Gautenger

Harry, you should change your occupation to mind reader. Just today I was thinking of a suggestion similar to what you have just started, nl.,

The pics in the 'Vancouver Diary' are all beautiful, but I am sure there are many of us who would also like to see more mundane pics of everyday life in CA. For example, general pics of your neighbourhood, home, corner cafè, local mall, inside the supermarket, basement, town's main street, the dustman :P , etc. General stuff that helps to get the mind ready for the sights that will become everyday scenes in the future.

These kind of pics would fit in nicely under this topic heading, how about it mate ;)

Cya & thanks for all the effort you guys over there go to to help us also get there :P .

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Harry

Gautenger,

I have a collection of pictures of everyday life stuff and I will now post that under "Vancouver Diary", which I am re-gearing in that direction anyway. The intention with "Residential Areas" thread is to describe the residential areas. If you have further suggestions for main threads (topics), feel free. We'll try from this side to provide info and pictures on those subjects.

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Guest Guest

Port Coquitlam

Ons bly in Port Coquitlam, dit is die woonbuurt tussen Coquitlam en Pitt Meadows. Die rede hoekom ons hier gekoop het destyds was die bekostigbaarheid van huise in die area. Aangesien ons nie met n massiewe verband wou sit nie het ons besluit om verder uit te wyk van die baie gewilde Noord Vancouver asook Port Moody. Ons was nog nooit spyt oor die besluit nie want dit is n baie lekker middelklas buurt met baie goeie skole in die area.

n Paar pluspunte is die pragtige mere en piekniekplekke hier rondom ons wat besigenoeg hou veral in die somer. Ten eerste Buntzen en White Pines wat almal hier rond seker ken. My gunsteling in is Barnett Marine Park waar ons maklik die hele dag kan deurbring, die kinders speel in die sand, ons hou al die verkeer op die water dop ens. ens. HEERLIK. Minnekhada het ook pragtige staproetes met baie dierelewe. Pitt Lake is ook naby en te veel ander om op te noem.

Winkels te kies en keur, United Blvd in Coquitlam het die meeste meubelwinkels wat ek nog gesien het, Ikea is naby en dan ook natuurlike die malls. Coquitlam en Lougheed Malls is albei gou bereikbaar asook Guildford in Surrey as die Port Mann natuurlik saamwerk.

Praat van n brug, dit was een van die redes hoekom ons ook hier kom bly het want my man was baie allergies vir brugry en aangesien hy in Burnaby werk, hoef hy nooit te worry oor probleme op die brug nie.

Dit is my storie

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Harry

Guest, I have this photo that I took at Barnett Marine Park. To this day I have never figured out what the structures are in the water. May be you know?

Barnet.jpg

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Guest Guest_Etienne

Looks like pilons for docking, Harry. Perhaps an old ferry landing?

Here's our little mall and the view on the way to work this morning.

safeway.jpg

view.jpg

The mountains in the background are on Vancouver Island. The little island in the middle is Passage Island (house with amazing view on the left rock outcrop) and on the right is Bowen Island. Bottom of the pic is Eagle Harbour.

House on Passage Island.

house.jpg

Harry, as you suggested earlier, I have reduced the pic quality to 30% for faster loading.

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Neeven

How on earth do you guys insert more than one pic in a message?

post-26-1074202210_thumb.jpg

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Guest Guest

Neeven,

We do not attach the pic to the post but rather store them on another website and then post a link to the pic using the IMG button above.

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Harry

Etienne, I find that I compress most things to 40% quality (60% compression), but pictures with more detail I have to relent and only do it 50%. Now and then photos with low detail and lots of sky, can be done all the way to maybe 25% quality (75% compression).

Neeven, I'm pretty sure your ISP over there must have some webspace assigned to you. Just post the picture there and then link it with "IMG".

I am wondering if I could impose on Kolla to post us a story on Indian River, where she stayed until recently?

Also, if we all asked very nicely, we could even get Guest(Port Coquitlam) to do us something about the big new IKEA in Burnaby near there. IKEA is a big deal for people coming here that have to get new furniture for their homes. Hoe lyk dit, Carien?

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Neeven

Harry, I'm eagerly awaiting the pics of Port Moody that you said you had on disk.

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Harry

They were HUGE! Sit tight...I'll try to post them in the next 10 minutes.

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Neeven

Cheers!

I just posted a request for info about Skytrain in Vancouver under 'Settling In' but wondered if it's not more appropriate in this thread.

Also, can pics posted at www.webshots.com be inserted here?

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Harry

MORE PORT MOODY

Brian Cavazzi, a local friend, lives not too far from Port Moody and has taken these shots for me to post here. I hope you find them useful,Neeven:

1. The view west from Heritage Mountain, the highest and newest part of Port Moody. Refer back to the earliest pics I posted on Port Moody on this thread to See Heritage Mountain from a distance.

moodyburnview.jpg

2. Looking north across the Burrard Inlet at Ioco Road homes.

moodyhouse1.jpg

3. Heritage Mountain homes

moodyhome.jpg

4. New home construction on top of Heritage Mountain

moodyhouse3.jpg

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Harry

Oops..I compressed that Ioco Road picture a bit too much...one can see the jpg blocks in the fog...artifact, not real.

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Neeven

Aaaahhhh, I love this place.

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Neeven

Phew, Harry, these houses are huuuuuge. They must cost a fortune.

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EtienneG

Neeven,

All house sales are listed through MLS and is a great spot to do some home/price searches. Look here.

Edited by EtienneG

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Guest Guest_Patche

Hi Neeven

Heritage mountain houses are EXPENSIVE - anything between $400 + (townhomes & duplexes) to starting at $850 000 for the huge single family ones - we go there just to dream..... :blink:

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EtienneG

Patche,

Use the link above to check listings on Heritage Mountain. They are not as expensive as you think. The most expensive listing in the erea was $798k and that was a huge 6200 sq ft house....

Edited by EtienneG

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Guest Guest_Engela

Ag, ENIGIETS met 'n uitsig en daai berge en water......... ek is sommer jaloers. Hier is alles net bruin en bruin en nogmaals bruin - al hierdie subdivisions en die argitekte moet ALMAL voor 'n vuurpeleton morsdood geskiet word!! My man noem die goed Zoeloe Impies wat so aangehol kom - jy wil net daar naar word as jy die goed sien......... . Ek kan NOOIT in so 'n huis woon nie en nog boonop sien wat my bure vanoggend vir brekfis eet nie......... daarom betaal ons 'n moerawiese prys vir die voorreg vir die woonbuurt waar ons woon - naby die meer en feitlik op 'n rivier - sodat manlief kan kayak in die somer en nie ELKE huis asof afgedruk deur 'n koekiedrukker nie. Ja, julle is regtig gelukkig om te kan woon waar die omgewing so geweldig mooi is!

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