East Vancouver: An Affordable Haven in the Heart of Vancouver
Also known as “East Van”, East Vancouver is a region located within the city of Vancouver, Canada. The region is bordered by the Burrard Inlet up north, to the easy by Burnaby City and the Fraser River down south. East Vancouver and Vancouver’s West Side is currently divided by the Ontario Street. East Vancouver was originally the home for many non British immigrants in the 1880s. It was considered an affordable area and was traditionally the home for most of the city’s low-income working class. Today, the East Side can be summarized by its diversity—in land use, mother tongue & ethnicity, and family income. The rapid increase in house prices and urban gentrification may have led to the diverse changes in this side of town.
East Vancouver was originally settled by the aboriginal people early in the 500 BC. While many of the aboriginal settlements where situated in the downtown and west side areas, an important settlements in the East was once located along the banks of Fraser River. In 1865, the first European settlement was established in what is now called Strathcona, the city’s first neighborhood. The development of North Arm Road started in 1872. This road was originally constructed to let farmers transport their produce from the northern regions to the Fraser River. Aside from agriculture, canneries were major employers for locals back then.
Housing and Transportation
Home prices in this area are more affordable compared to Vancouver West communities. Because of its reasonable and affordable residential properties, this part of town continues to attract professionals and families who want to live close to the downtown area but couldn’t afford the high end West Vancouver neighborhoods. Today, new houses are being built to replace the old ones. Residential and commercial development rapidly thrives, especially around the areas close to the SkyTrain stations. Situated right at the southeastern portion of the city, Champlain Heights is a neighborhood that features mixed housing for co-ops and seniors.
East Vancouver features a close proximity to the downtown area. It takes about ten to fifteen minutes to drive from the East to the metro center. Residents of this friendly neighborhood enjoy easy access to the downtown area through bus lines, bikeways and 3 train stations.
Shopping and Entertainment
East Vancouver features a distinctive culture and warm community spirit. Its local shops, dining, art galleries, markets and entertainment centers showcase the community’s unique character. Locally known as SoMa, the Main Street area is home to trendy boutiques, antique shops, coffee shops and eclectic night spots. Further down along the 49th Avenue, expect a big Indian community and the enticing colors and aromas of their Punjabi Market. Parks in the area provide green enclaves to locals and are also a popular place for them to walk their pets, have a picnic, or host summer events.
East Vancouver has many elementary and secondary schools to serve local residents. You can always view a list of public schools and other education programs from the Vancouver School Board site. Located right at the heart of East Vancouver, the Vancouver Community College—King Edward Campus is a popular institution for students.