Discover Burnaby, British Columbia: A Blend of History and Modernity
Burnaby, British Columbia, is a vibrant city nestled in the heart of the Lower Mainland region of Canada. It is surrounded by the City of Vancouver, the District of North Vancouver, Port Moody, Coquitlam, New Westminster, Surrey, and Richmond. Burnaby is the third-largest city in British Columbia and is home to Simon Fraser University and the British Columbia Institute of Technology. It also boasts the largest mall in the province, Metropolis at Metrotown, and is a hub for high-tech companies and film and television production.
The Rich History of Burnaby, British Columbia
Pre-colonial Era (Before 1850)
The hən̓q̓əmín̓əm̓ and Sḵwx̱wú7mesh speaking Coast Salish Nations were the early inhabitants of Burnaby. Landmarks like Burnaby Mountain, Deer Lake, and Brunette River hold significant places in Indigenous history. The Indigenous population thrived on agriculture and food preservation techniques, with Burnaby's marshlands serving as cranberry harvesting areas. However, the introduction of diseases by early European explorers and fur traders led to a significant decrease in the Indigenous population.
Incorporation and Development (1850–1990)
The Fraser Canyon Gold Rush of 1858 brought over 30,000 fortune seekers to British Columbia, leading to the establishment of the Colony of British Columbia and New Westminster as its capital. Burnaby was named after Burnaby Lake, which was named after Robert Burnaby, a Freemason, explorer, and legislator. The city was incorporated in 1892, and the interurban tram connecting Vancouver, Burnaby, and New Westminster began construction in the same year.
Burnaby's growth was influenced by the expanding urban centres of Vancouver and New Westminster. It evolved from an agricultural area to an important transportation corridor. The introduction of the Skytrain's Expo Line further boosted this trend. Burnaby became a first-tier suburb of Vancouver and gradually became more urban in character with the establishment of the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) in 1960 and Simon Fraser University (SFU) in 1965. The city officially became a city in 1992.
Geography and Land Use in Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby occupies 98.6 square kilometres and is located at the geographic centre of the Metro Vancouver Regional District. The city has four areas of urban density known as "town centres": Lougheed, Edmonds, Metrotown, and Brentwood. Despite being home to many industrial and commercial firms, Burnaby maintains a high ratio of park land to residents, one of the highest in North America.
Parks, Rivers, and Lakes in Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby is home to several major parklands and waterways, including Central Park, Robert Burnaby Park, Kensington Park, Burnaby Mountain, Still Creek, the Brunette River, Burnaby Lake, Deer Lake, Squint Lake, and Barnet Marine Park.
Climate of Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby has an oceanic climate with mild, dry summers and cool, rainy winters. Due to its elevation, the city typically experiences more snowfall during the winter months than nearby Vancouver or Richmond.
Demographics of Burnaby, British Columbia
As of the 2021 Canadian census, Burnaby had a population of 249,125. The city has a diverse ethnic and immigrant community, with the largest ethnic group being the Chinese, followed closely by Europeans.
Industry and Economy in Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby is a hub for major technology firms, including Ballard Power Systems, D-Wave Systems, Clio, Creo, and Electronic Arts Canada. The city also houses heavy industry companies like Chevron Corporation and Petro-Canada.
Arts and Culture in Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby is home to several museums, including the Burnaby Village Museum, the Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre, the Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, and SFU Galleries. The city also boasts the Burnaby Public Library and several cultural facilities located in or around Deer Lake Park.
Transportation in Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby is served by the SkyTrain's Expo Line and Millennium Line, as well as Metro Vancouver's bus system. The city also has over 70 kilometres of bike routes and urban trails.
Sister Cities of Burnaby, British Columbia
Burnaby has four sister cities: Kushiro, Japan; Mesa, Arizona, United States; Hwaseong, South Korea; and Zhongshan, China.