Questions & Answers

What's all this talk about a Barge?

If you live in Vancouver, you know about the Barge :) If you don't know about the Barge, get up to speed here.

So we're going to transform an empty Barge... into a giant flowerpot?

Basically, yes! The Barge is big enough to support an entire ecosystem. For similar projects, see Inspiration.

Floating Island (2005) by Robert Smithson & Nancy Holt

Link to project webpage

Swale (2016 - ongoing) by Mary Mattingly

Link to project webpage

Why go to the effort? Can't we just get rid of the Barge?

Here's what we know: the Barge can't be left the way it is, empty and abandoned. It can't be moved, either. That leaves only two options.

Demolishing the 85-metre, multi-tonne Barge would be a large engineering project and a months-long disturbance... ending in an empty patch of shoreline.

Transforming the Barge into a Living Landmark is a serious project too, but it's also a long-term investment: in biodiversity, in tourism, in public art, in climate action.

Any way you slice it, the situation will require effort to resolve. Let's pour that effort into something worth celebrating.

Ship scrapping, Port Colborne, Ontario

Image source

Vancouver's Barge transformed - instead of scrapped

I'm on board with the vision, but how would it really work?

Adaptive Reuse is the field of discovering and creating value in things assumed to be useless.

An abandoned industrial shell often makes the best starting point. Doesn't that make sense? Anything made for industry tends to be heavy, large, and durable - yet originally designed for a single, specific purpose.

So the key is to imagine new uses. And this idea, of a landscape in a barge, is unique but not unprecedented. See Inspiration.

What makes our Barge project different? Mainly, it's much larger. Truly a forest ecosystem in a box - not just a few trees. Fortunately, our Barge sits on the land and doesn't need to float.

As with any large-scale public work of this kind, various stakeholders, public and private, including the City of Vancouver itself, must unite their intentions to move forward. Then, working out proposal(s) in detail will require collaboration from a diverse group of experts.

But first comes enthusiasm from the community. If you're on board to explore this idea, Sign & Share the petition here.

This petition is about a local issue. Can I sign if I'm not in Vancouver?

Yes. We'd like to gauge support both locally and beyond, as this project could become an example to the wider community. When you sign, you'll provide your postal code to indicate locale. Thank you!

Will you help Save the Barge?

Here's how you can voice your support:

1. Sign the Petition here:

2. Spread the word.

glad to have you on board,

rutsaver records