The City of Vancouver is looking to hear the public’s input for the redesign of the Chinatown Memorial Square through an online survey.
Unveiled in 1995, the square is located in the heart of Chinatown and according to a release from the city has served as a valued public space in the community. The square has hosted important community events like Remembrance Day ceremonies and draws many visitors to the neighbourhood where they can learn about the contributions of Chinese people in Canada.
It is this area that the city is seeking to improve as an accessible public space that enhances the community’s culture and history.
The project originated as a recommendation from the Historical Discrimination Against Chinese People in Vancouver report to City Council in 2017. Since then, the city’s Chinatown Transformation Team has been working with the community on the long-term goal of seeking UNESCO World Heritage Site status for Chinatown.
The square includes the Chinatown Memorial Monument which was unveiled in 2003. The monument displays two bronze figures, a railway worker that recognizes the thousands of Chinese Canadians who lived and died building the Trans-Canadian railway system. The second bronze figure, a Chinese Canadian Second World War soldier, represents some six hundred Chinese Canadians who volunteered in the War efforts. The main column is a stylized form of the Chinese character zhong, which symbolizes moderation and harmony.
The survey to gather public input on a vision to guide the design of the plaza is available now until June 9, 2021.