Did you know that there is still one natural salmon bearing stream left in the City of Vancouver? That is on Crown Street south of Southwest Marine Drive, and you can see it as it goes through Musqueam Park. Fish that have used this creek are Chum, Coho and Cutthroat trout.
This stream and its location is also important, as it is next to the Musqueam First Nation, and Crown Street is also a major entrance to the Nation.
Even two decades ago the City of Vancouver had a surprising percolating font of innovation in the most unexpected place, the Engineering Department. There visionaries like Doug Smith of Greenways (who now heads up the Sustainability Department) and David Desrochers who was manager of Sewer Design stewarded new approaches to managing streets and stormwater. They believed that work could be done in a different, more ecologically sensitive way, and looked for opportunities to test new materials and work in their projects. One grumpy conservative engineer at the city said that both of these individuals should lose their engineering accreditations for their innovative approaches. But that most certainly did not happen, instead both Mr. Smith and Mr. Desrochers created work that garnered international attention and awards. And no one talks about the grumpy engineer.
David Desrochers along with Wally Konowalchuk and Jonathan Helmus had been looking for a place to experiment with a more ecologically responsible way to innovate on the standard street curb and gutter. Crown Street with its proximity to this important salmon stream and to the gateway of the Musqueam First Nations lands was chosen.
The work on Crown Street between Southwest Marine Drive and 48th Avenue was approved in 2002 . In 2004 funding of 1.18 million was approved with $545,000 being the city share of the cost. Other funding came from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities,($593,350) with the remainder from the Musqueam First Nation and through a Local Improvement Program initiative cost shared with residents.Read more »