Community Feed


    Apr 29, 2016

    Whether you're a non-drinker, enjoy the occasional glass of wine, or are a regular at your neighbourhood pub, the City wants to hear your opinions for the first comprehensive review of its liquor policies. It’s launching an online questionnaire to gather your views on how liquor is served, produced, and sold in Vancouver. Your feedback will help shape the Vancouver Liquor Strategy which will inform new or revised approaches to liquor. The survey will be open until May 15, 2016.

    Types of liquor policies being reviewed

    The City is reviewing municipal liquor regulations so that enjoying beer, wine, and spirits is well-balanced with health, safety, and community fit. The Province of BC recently made changes to provincial liquor policies. The City is now looking at its policies, too, such as:

    • Where and when liquor is sold, made, or served

    • Size and type of venues that serve liquor

    • Rules for liquor on patios

    • Supporting no- or low-liquor entertainment options

  • DOXA Documentary Film Festival

    Apr 25, 2016

    DOXA 2016: Spotlight on Borders and Boundaries

    Borders are more than arbitrary lines on a map, they’re also a means of controlling and mediating reality. Our Spotlight on Borders and Boundaries examines the ongoing negotiation between physical and conceptual divisions.

    John Bolton’s epic docudrama Aim For The Roses combines the tragic tale of Canadian daredevil Ken Carter with singing dancing automotive carnage to create a film that flaunts limits of physics and good sense. In Migrant Dreams, director Min Sook Leeexamines the struggle of migrant agricultural workers against Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) that treats foreign workers as indentured labourers. As thousands of people try to escape war and oppression by fleeing across the Mediterranean, the Italian Island of Lampedusa is the first port of entry in Jakob Brossman’s Lampedusa In Winter. Jay Cheel’s film explores the ultimate boundary, the 4th dimension -- time itself in How to Build a Time Machine.

    Catch all of these great documentaries and more from May 5-15.  Check for details.


    Apr 20, 2016

    *Update April 20, 9:00 am: A marijuana protest group has set up on the 800 block of Robson St. No vehicular access (including buses) to Robson from Howe or Hornby. The setup includes several large white tents, and a band/sound system. Area businesses should plan accordingly as there will likely be the smoke, noise, disorder, and traffic disruptions that have traditionally come with a 420 rally.

    DATE & TIME: Wednesday, April 20, 10am-7pm

    LOCATION: Sunset Beach (1204 Beach Ave)

    *Note: While 4/20 has been at the North Lawn of the Vancouver Art Gallery since 2007, the organizers have voluntarily moved to Sunset Beach. However, an off-shoot group has publicized an event on the VAG south plaza. VPD will be monitoring and directing protesters to the Sunset Beach site. The City is unable to accurately predict the number of attendees at this time. 



    The following issues are ones business owners and tenants should expect and plan accordingly: 

    1.   Organizers of Vancouver's annual 4/20 celebration have moved the pro-marijuana event to Sunset Beach from its usual location at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Vancouver simply doesn't have many accessible venues for massive, public outdoor events. Sunset Beach is one of the few places in the city the expected 20,000 people can easily and safely gather together in such numbers.

    2.   Washrooms: Ordinarily festivals of this size, including the 4/20 rally are required to provide onsite washrooms, however the offshoot group has not made arrangements. Neighbouring businesses may be approached for use of their washrooms.

    3.   Garbage: Festival organizers are required to provide litter receptacles onsite and cleaning crews. For unsightly or overflowing trash cans on city property, call 3-1-1 immediately.

    4.   Safety: Possible over consumption of marijuana and marijuana-related products could result in drug reactions or disoriented persons wandering on or off-site. Last year over 100 people were sent to St. Paul’s alone because of cannabis intoxication. 75% were from overconsumption of edible THC-laced products. For any immediate safety or security issues, call 9-1-1. Emergency responders will have a command post and be monitoring the VAG south plaza site.
    Read: Warning issued Ahead [Vancouver Sun]

    5.   Noise: VPD will be working to minimize the set-up of structures such as a stage. Power will not be supplied for amplified sound. Should it occur, excessive noise issues can be relayed to 3-1-1.

    6.   Air quality: Buildings nearby have experienced compromised air intake system issues in the past. Some businesses have turned off their HVAC for the day. This is a precaution to take should crowd numbers build at the VAG south plaza, especially around 4:20 in the afternoon.

    7.   Street closures: Although it is not anticipated, Traffic could be closed on Robson, West Georgia and/or Howe at any time if the crowds at the VAG get large. Access to Pacific Centre Parkade off Howe will be maintained.

    8.   People: If the offshoot group at the VAG gains momentum, there could be a possible increased number of people in and around the VAG; potential increase in customers to nearby businesses, in particular, food operators.


    Most issues around 420 have been mess, access to washrooms, open urination, drug reactions, traffic disruption and disoriented persons wandering about. The DVBIA blog will be updated periodically if anything has changed.

    If you have additional information or concerns the DVBIA should be aware of, please contact Charles Gauthier

    The 2015 protest site. Photo credit: CC | Flickr


    Apr 19, 2016

    In 90 seconds, learn how 11,000 people Re-imagined Downtown Vancouver. It’s how they think downtown should look, feel and taste in 2040.  

    Last year we invited Vancouverites to dream of a new vision for downtown. While the report is 60 pages long, the quick summary video is just 90 seconds.

    Then invite us to your workplace to talk about how your organization, company or group can make the dozens of ideas a reality. And, you don’t have to wait till 2040 to get started!

    Call Charles Gauthier, President & CEO, at 604-685-7811 ext.203


    Apr 19, 2016

    Looking to start or grow a downtown business? We’ve got the data details for you. Check out the Commercial and Neighbourhood profiles for downtown based on numerous data sources, including 2012 Census stats, City and DVBIA data. All you wanted to know about downtown in one location.

    Plus, there are short profiles for our three major retail districts: Alberni, Hastings West and Granville Street.

    These profiles were created in partnership with Small Business BC – a great resource for starting a new business or expanding your existing company.


    Apr 19, 2016

    There’s a 1 in 4 chance of an earthquake hitting Vancouver? Odds aren’t in our favour. Are you ready for the big one? Are you ready for the small one – a power outage, fire or flood? Don’t think it can happen? Downtown Nanaimo just experienced a major fire last month. Remember the Calgary floods of 2013? It’s not a case of ‘if’ but ‘when.’

    Do one thing today to prepare.

    1. Start by order emergency safety kits for your office.
    2. Create a contact list for all your staff.
    3. Or, have a meeting and talk about creating a plan.

    Just start somewhere.

    There are plenty of templates and tools out there to get you and your business started in preparing for an emergency and maintaining your business in a disaster.

  • Plan ahead: BMO Marathon in May

    Apr 11, 2016

    The BMO Vancouver Marathon will be here on Sunday May 1, 2016. Showcasing the city’s famous landmarks, shorelines and neighborhoods, the event is one of Canada’s largest marathons and has a 44 year history in the City of Vancouver and the running community internationally. The 2016 race events include a Marathon, Half-Marathon, 8km, Marathon Relay, 2.5km Walk and  Kids Run.

    The Race will result in some road closures around Vancouver, and within the downtown core. Please plan accordingly. Parking will be very limited around the staging grounds and may result in some parking lots being closed as early as Saturday morning. It is recommended that businesses make arrangements in advance for parking and deliveries. If you have special circumstances please contact to discuss.

  • City of Bhangra

    Apr 03, 2016

    VIBC Presents City of Bhangra 2016

    This year’s Festival runs from June 11–18 and promises to be our best yet! Along with crowd-pleasers from past years like Bhangra on Main and Downtown Bhangra, Festival 2016 is introducing some hot NEW events guaranteed to inspire, provoke, and please you. From our “Crash an Indian Wedding” kickoff party, to a “Where Not to Do Bhangra” comedy/burlesque night, to workshops and club nights in unexpected places, we promise you 8 days and nights of pushing buttons and pushing boundaries through bhangra like you’ve never seen before.

    For details on COB Festival 2016, visit or

    photo credit Joe Carlson


    Apr 01, 2016

    It doesn’t happen often, but downtown is getting a brand new park at Richards & Smithe. Have your say on the final design on April 19 from 4:30p-8:30pm at the ArtStart Gallery at 808 Richards Street. 

    The Vancouver Park Board is developing the new 0.8-acre park in the downtown core in partnership with the City and other stakeholders, including the DVBIA.

    The new park will:

    Within a five-minute walk of the park site is a growing downtown neighbourhood. There's over 10,000 residents and 17,000 people working in the area. With a shortage of downtown park space to serve a growing population, the new park will ease crowding at other downtown parks.

    Read more.


  • Capture Photography Festival

    Apr 01, 2016

    The April 2016 edition of the Capture Photography Festival will present photography at over 50 esteemed galleries throughout Vancouver, and include public installations, tours, films, and a Speaker Series with artist talks and panel discussions.

    Be sure to check out the many public art installations throughout the Downtown Vancouver, including this year's commission of Vancouver-based Stephen Waddell’s The Collector and Showroom at the BC Hydro Dal Grauer Substation, and new work by local favourite, Adad Hannah, at Vancouver City Centre’s Canada Line station.

  • Bike to Work Week

    Apr 01, 2016

    Want to get fit, save money and have fun? Join thousands across Metro Vancouver and sign up for HUB Bike to Work Week (May 30 - June 5) to track your commutes and enter to win a new bike or a trip for 2 to Amsterdam on KLM! Visit one of our downtown HUB celebration stations or many other convenient locations for free coffee, bicycle tune-ups and many daily giveaways! Start an office team and challenge your co-workers to win even bigger prizes. 

    New or returning to cycling? No worries!  Learn everything you need to know for a safe and convenient bike commute by hosting a HUB Workplace Cycling Workshop at your office or signing up for an upcoming HUB Streetwise Cycling Course!

    Register FREE today at!

  • DOXA Documentary Film Festival

    Apr 01, 2016

    The 2016 DOXA Documentary Film Festival hurtles headlong into the nonfiction universe. Whether it is one of the best BASE jumpers in the world, or soaring the heights of literary fame, this year’s selection of films take a leap of faith in the quest for justice, freedom and naked glory. May 5-15, 2016. Full program available online, during the evening of April 06.

  • BMO Vancouver Marathon

    Mar 31, 2016

    The BMO Vancouver Marathon's marquee Marathon event (on May 1) is selling fast! Secure your spot to run through one of the most scenic cities in North America this spring!  Also featuring a Half Marathon, Relay, 8KM Race, 2.5KM Walk, and Kids Run.
    Health, Sports & Lifestyle Expo (April 28-30) leads up to the marathon at the Vancouver Convention Centre West. Featuring 110+ exhibitors and major brands showcasing everything from running gear and shoes to the latest trends the tradeshow is free to attend.


    Mar 31, 2016

    The DVBIA welcomes over 200 delegates to a sold-out Business Improvement Areas of BC and International Downtown Association Pacific Northwest Regional Conference April 10-13 at the Pinnacle Hotel in downtown Vancouver. Downtown association leaders, municipal staff, urban planners and volunteer association board members will descend on Vancouver to learn best practices in managing urban districts.

    It’s a chance for downtown Vancouver to highlight its leadership in areas such as walkability, a green economy, high-touch and high-tech policing, addressing homelessness, emergency planning and much more.

    Read more.


    Mar 31, 2016


    Take in free, mind-altering readings, interviews and discussions with authors who will change how you see – and hear – the world.

    On April 13, topics include resource extraction, embracing a more sustainable lifestyle and the future of democracy. Writers Andrew Nikiforuk (Slick Water), Carrie Saxifrage (The Big Swim) and Micah White (The End of Protest) weave compelling tales to investigate these themes in their crucial works of non-fiction. 

    The Vancouver Writers Fest, in partnership with Vancouver Public Library and the Downtown Vancouver BIA, offers this series of free interviews, discussions and readings with Canadian and international writers.  

    The series runs through May.

    Full lineup and details:

    7:30 pm  on Wednesdays
    Alice MacKay Room
    VPL Central Library
    350 West Georgia Street


  • Cherry Blossom Festival

    Mar 23, 2016


    Vancouver knows how to do Spring! With the plum blossoms already out, downtown gets ready to usher in the flowering cherry tree. Cherry blossoms, here we come! This March and April, join a favorite springtime tradition, admiring and celebrating the cherry blossoms. The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival and the DVBIA mark ten years of bringing the downtown community together under the cherry tree with arts and culture. 

    Kicking off the Festival is the free lunchtime concert, Cherry Jam Downtown inside Burrard SkyTrain Station on Thursday March 24thCherry Jam presents an eclectic line-up of local talent including Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra quartet with Pro Arte Centre dancers, BC Children’s Children’s Choir, Vancouver Okinawa Taiko, Vancouver Chinese Music Ensemble and Haiku Mime with mime artist Yayoi Hirano and Holly Burke of The Naturals on flute.

    In partnership with Transit Museum Society, the Festival is delighted to introduce TRAMS Blossom Bus tours from Burrard SkyTrain Station to explore some of the city’s best blossoms. As tours are bloom dependent, be sure to check out the Festival website at for the schedule.

    The Festival is celebrating their tenth anniversary in a big way this spring with Blossom Barge, a floating installation of 36 cherry trees in bloom unlike anything ever seen on Vancouver blue ways before! Come out to see the barge with its canopy of pink and white cherry blossoms as it sails past downtown, Coal Harbour and False Creek. On April 16th and April 17th, the best downtown viewing spots for the whole family to cheer on the cherries are: the Pier at Canada Place, Jack Poole Plaza, Harbour Green Park and Stanley Park. Later, Science World and Sails of Lights, Port Metro Vancouver, will light up with cherry blossoms and turn pink in celebration with the Festival! Blossom Barge sails again to return to Crab Park around 3pm on Sunday April 17th when it will be joined by a flotilla in False Creek.

    Other returning Festival events include free Tree Talks & Walks, with the first tour leaving from the Hyatt Regency Vancouver and concluding at Burrard SkyTrain Station in time for the Cherry Jam concert on March 24th. To enjoy a uniquely Vancouver experience this spring visit for a full list of events. You can even purchase your very own cherry tree, Birthday Blossoms to be planted on private property and support the Festival’s 10th birthday!


    Mar 07, 2016

    During the time Janette Sadik-Khan was Transportation Commissioner of New York City, the results were transformative—from Times Square to every borough of the Big Apple and beyond. Even in Vancouver, her strategy of ‘just trying things out’ encouraged our recent experiments with public spaces and bike-lanes. Her North America-wide influence has led to new people-focused street design standards, to new opportunities for public spaces, and to new ways of moving through our cities.

    Attend a special lecture by Sadik-Khan, here to promote her new book "Streetfight: Handbook for an Urban Revolution". The lecture will be followed by a spirited chat between Sadik-Khan and SFU City Program Director Gordon Price.

    Tickets are just $5.
    Proudly supported by the Downtown Vancouver BIA

  • Family FUSE Weekend!

    Feb 23, 2016

    March 5th and 6th from 10:00am to 5:00pm, explore the groundbreaking exhibition MashUp through a diverse range of performances and hands-on activities. Join hip-hop dance performances and workshops withDedos & The Now Or Never Crew and Project Soul Crew, partake in screen-print workshop combining digital images with text presented by Malaspina Printmakers, learn a range of collage techniques from artists Jessie and Ewan McNeil, and see experimental electronic music and video performances by students from Burnaby North High who have created pieces during a project with The Western Front.

    FREE for Members and for children 12 & under. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Regular adult admission rates apply.

  • CelticFest Vancouver 2016

    Feb 18, 2016

    It's March, and you know what that means! Soon CelticFest Vancouver will be filling city streets, concert halls, and pubs with the vibrant Celtic spirit. Mark your calendars for March 10 - 17. There's so much to see and do! It all starts with a special pre-festival concert featuring Ireland's Damien DempseyMarch 5.

    The festival welcomes Irish music legends The Irish Rovers for a very special evening on St. Patrick's Day, March 17 at the Vogue Theatre. This must-see show celebrates the Rovers' 50th Anniversary, and their final world tour. The band promises a great evening full of your favorite Rovers' tunes, and a chance to meet them after the show. What better way could you spend St. Paddy's Day?

    Don't miss your chance to cheer CelticFest's official kick-off at Doolin's Irish Pub on Thursday, March 10. Come raise a glass amidst the rousing tunes of Halifax Wharf Rats. Doolin's also hosts three nights of whisky tastings on March 14, 15, 16. Find your level of expertise, and enjoy the educational experience! Other festival shows include The Vancouver Welsh Men's Choir March 11 at St. Andrew's Wesley Church, the rollicking CelticFest Ceilidh March 12, Irish accordion dynamo Sharon ShannonMarch 13and multiple performances of the hilarious comedy Moll from Standing Room Only Theatre.

    The free Celtic Village takes over Granville Street between Robson & Nelson on the weekend of March 12 and 13, with great Celtic bands on Doolin’s Music Stage, dynamic swordplay in the Celtic Kids' Zone, and workshops and shows at Tom Lee Music. 

    The fabulous St. Patrick's Day Parade is Sunday, March 13 starting at 11am. The route heads north on Howe from Davie, and ends at Georgia and Granville. Get there early for a good place to view! Full info and tickets at


    Feb 08, 2016

    Go bananas and ring in the Lunar New Year as the 2016 LunarFest returns to downtown Vancouver February 12-14 to ring in the Year of the Monkey!

    Monkey King, a legendary character in the renowned Chinese literature Journey to the West, will be visiting the north plaza of the Vancouver Art Gallery from Feb. 12-14 with hundreds of his friends.  The Monkey King and his friends is an exhibition that is designed to interact with visitors and to challenge everyone to be creative in expressing their ways of celebrating Lunar New Year. Be sure to check out the exhibition "Reflections" and try to see humans in the monkeys; the exhibition invited works from Anna Banana, the artist who recently completed her exhibition "45 Years of Fooling Around with A. Banana" at the Victoria Art Gallery, and Sherri Rogers, whose works are about Urban Zoos and Beth Agosti, who built a lantern with 18 elementary school children who were born in the Year of Monkey. Other works in the exhibition include Space Monkeys from the fashion students at the Green Apple Art Center and three other International artists. 

    Be sure to watch the World's smallest lion dancing and six types of Asian drumming dance performance and get into the festivity like no other celebrations in the world. For people who are anxious to learn what is in store for the Monkey Year, a Chinese Temple and a Japanese Temple are there to provide some divine guidance.  Other highlights include new year DIY crafts and dumplings etc. 

    Free admission. LunarFest is sponsored by the Downtown Vancouver BIA.

    For more info:

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