Vancouver (British Columbia), city in southwestern British Columbia, Canada, on Burrard
Washington in the United States. It is a leading Pacific coast seaport and the main
Vancouver area is the third largest metropolitan area in Canada, after Toronto, Ontario, and
and by an international airport on nearby Sea Island.
cosmopolitan city with numerous large modern buildings. Among the city’s many parks are
Stanley Park, which contains the Vancouver Public Aquarium and a zoo; and Vanier Park,
Museum, and the H. R. MacMillan Planetarium are located. The Pacific Coliseum hosts the
and Toronto; the teams, which will begin play in the 1995-1996 season, will be the first NBA
clubs outside of the United States. Other points of interest include the Vancouver Art Gallery,
with a collection of predominantly British Columbian and other Canadian art; the Van Dusen
America; and Gastown, a restoration of an old section of the city. Vancouver is the home of
(1963) is in adjacent Burnaby. The city supports a symphony orchestra, an opera company,
and a number of theater groups.
The Salish tribe inhabited the site when the Spanish explorer Jose Maria Narvaez visited the
area in 1791. The first permanent white settlement, established around 1865 and
subsequently known as Gastown, was renamed Granville in 1870. When the city was
British explorer who had surveyed the region in 1792. The community grew as a
wood-processing center, a railroad terminus, and a port, surpassing Victoria as the largest
commercial center on Canada’s west coast by the turn of the century. Many new buildings
(1986) 1,380,729; (1991) 1,602,502.