Vancouver Waterfront Water Feature Now Open

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Splish splash summer’s not over yet!

The summer heat has settled in for a bit and the much anticipated Columbia River water feature at Vancouver Waterfront Park (695 Waterfront Way) is finally open and ready to enjoy.

The water feature is an interactive art piece donated by the City Council and maintained by the Vancouver Parks and Recreation Department. Artist Larry Kirkland, responsible for designing the water feature, said “I believe that carefully conceived environments can create places of meaning with communities. The best of public art can challenge, delight, educate and illuminate. But above all, it can celebrate the qualities that make each place unique and can create a sense of civic ownership. This pride of place is a building block for the future of these communities.”

So, what is in the design you ask? At the top of the feature is an impressive structure titled “Headwaters”. Standing at 12-feet tall and 16-feet wide and constructed of stone and bronze and is facing north and south to the neighboring Columbia River. The east face is a cast bronze map detailing the Columbia Basin, northern Rocky Mountains, Cascades, Coastal mountain ranges and river valleys. It is designed to be touched and traced by human hands.

The west face features engraved stone with a topographic map of the origins of the Columbia River, “The Great River of the West”. Water cascades from the top at various rates reflecting the seasons. A one-inch deep river flows 150 feet in a molded riverbed. Throughout the river are stacks of granite, each representing one of the Columbia River’s tributaries. Engraved on each tributary stack are facts about that particular tributary as well as quotes from literature referencing water and the flow of rivers. Combined, the facts and quotes blend into a “poetic and contemplative experience”. More water flows from each stack adding to the original river, just like the Mighty Columbia River…

The water is chlorinated and the perfect place to relax, play and cool off. With summer days coming to an end soon, make sure to add this beautiful location to your list of places to visit soon.

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