Gone But Not Forgotten

As the list grows, I will divide it into categories, but I wanted to have a place to remember some of the Greater Vancouver places that are gone but not forgotten.

The Interurban

The British Columbia Electric Railway interurban trams ran along 3 lines between Vancouver and New Westminster (via Burnaby), as well as between Vancouver and Richmond, New Westminster and Chilliwack. It was established in 1891. In the 1950s, competition from the automobile led to the closing of unprofitable lines. In 1958, the last interurban tram took its final run between Steveston and Marpole (ref). Click here for more details.

Japanese Gardens

So-called Truck Gardens, growing things like lettuce, along the banks of the Fraser River in the lowlands South of Marine Drive in the Eastern part of the City of Vancouver.

Named because they were generally worked by Japanese families. Green Grocers also did weekly deliveries directly to homes in Greater Vancouver from these gardens.

(The Old) Second Narrows Bridge

Crossed Burrard Inlet right beside where the current Second Narrows Bridge crosses, forming part of the TransCanada Highway.

It was also a rail bridge, one track on each side of the outer structure of the bridge, but cars could also drive along the rail tracks when no train was present.

It opened to allow ships to pass, creating a huge lineup of traffic waiting to cross.

Non-free-flow Bridges

There was a One Way Bridge at the bottom of Cariboo Road, crossing the Brunett Creek near the Continental Can plant.

There were also a lot of bridges that opened for ships, including The Old Second Narrows Bridge and the Fraser Street Bridge to Richmond.

Royal Oak

The steepest known street was a portion of Royal Oak that has since been re-routed to reduce the Grade.

Royal Oak was also a Junior High school that had wall to wall carpet in the Library, the only public school in Greater Vancouver known to have carpeting in the 1960s. It was in a rich part of Burnaby and had a reputation for students getting in trouble. Rather than being fired, teachers from other Burnaby schools were often transferred to Royal Oak.

Swedana Smorgasboard

Near Boundary Road and Kingsway

Dragon Inn

On Kingsway in Burnaby


On 6th Street in New Westminster or Burnaby


Canada’s all-time best Mexican food.

Primo Villanueva was the founder of Primo’s Mexican Grill.

Jones Tent and Awning

Unlikely both by company name and climate at the factory location, Jones Tent and Awning, later Jones Leisure Wear, made the most practical parkas for winters North of 60. It felt strange buying a parka in Yellowknife that was made so close to where I grew up. The company had even been a customer of my father’s when he ran his own business.


  • Ink Wells
  • Carbon Paper
  • All Day Suckers
  • May Day
  • $1.49 Day
  • Bubble Gum
  • Fishmeal to feed laying hens
  • Delivery of Everything to the door of the homemaker