As part of the Re-Imagine Downtown Vancouver initiative, we interviewed a cross-section of people who share a passion for our city’s downtown to feature in our inspiration video.
Reviewing the interview transcripts, we realized that we had recorded a lot of great ideas and stories that didn’t make it into the final cut of the video. To ensure that these ideas and stories didn’t get lost, we will be sharing them with you in a series of posts.
Here is our interview with Gordon Price, director of the City Program at Simon Fraser University, and author of the popular PriceTags: Perspectives on Vancouver blog:
What does downtown Vancouver mean to you?
The best, special places, people, goods and services and ideas because it’s a great place for exchange. That’s why people come to cities. It’s crowded, sometimes expensive, and there’s a diversity of rich and poor, good and bad all in one place. But they’re unique and you can only find them here. They make more of it, cause it’s always changing.
So, when you come here, you’re going to see a whole range of possibilities, whether you’re coming to find really good food or meet interesting people or just to find great places to hang out. It’s changing. You know when you come back it’s going to be different and that’s why you come back.
I come back because it’s changing and I can always find the best and the worst of everything. The thing is it’s all together and I can’t find anything else like it except downtown.
What excites you about the future of downtown Vancouver?
Downtown has a great future because it has a critical mass. People live here, people work here, they entertain, they play, they educate themselves. But it’s that interaction that produces new ideas that attracts new people because the future has got to be built on the past. Downtown Vancouver has a great past, a vibrant present and that can only mean a good future.
How do you think the downtown Vancouver experience should look, taste and feel in the future?
I’m 66 so my horizon is a little bit different. What I look to when it comes to the future is: what is a 16-year-old and 26-year-old doing? If [downtown is] a place for them, if they are inventing the future, and if I can’t be part of it, I’d at least like to hang out with them. That’s where they are, and that’s where I want to be too.