West End, Westside, and West Vancouver: these are all different places, with bridges between each, so Vancouver geography can get confusing! Referring to this neighbourhood map, places to know in Vancouver are:
- University of British Columbia: yes, it’s big! Not quite this big – this map includes Pacific Spirit Park in the “University” neighbourhood. On campus rental housing for faculty and staff is very popular among faculty members, and there is a great sense of community. There are 840 units of faculty and staff rental on campus.
- Kitsilano: one of the most popular places to live for faculty, Kits offers beaches, restaurants and small shops, community activities, and a very walkable, bikeable, and transit-friendly lifestyle. Many people who live in this neighbourhood bike to work (yes, we have showers).
- False Creek: a waterfront community that isn’t on a creek, but on an inlet that is often filled with a combination of moored boats and dragonboat racers, capped on one end by the geodesic dome of Science World. Condos and apartments line the shore. The most famous attraction of this neighbourhood is Granville Island, a unique neighbourhood of industry and art brought together with food and markets.
- Yaletown: the other side of false creek, this is classic downtown living with a waterview twist.
- West End: a vibrant community with a neighbourhood feel for residents despite its downtown address. Lots of food and shops, great beaches, and it’s a great place to be in Pride Month or during the Celebration of Light fireworks festival.
- Mount Pleasant: an up-and-coming neighbourhood with lots of young families, community amenities, and more affordable housing options.
- Cambie / Main / Fraser: nice neighbourhoods with a mixture of vibrant blocks (Cambie, Main, Fraser streets) and homes.
- Oakridge: a developing neighbourhood centred on a redeveloping shopping mall, a Canadaline station, and Langara College.
- Marpole: an older neighbourhood with a mixture of low rise housing and single family homes; this area includes land belonging to the Musqueam Band.
The most popular ways for faculty and staff to get to work include:
- Walking or cycling. There are dedicated cycle routes throughout Vancouver, and bike lanes on all the major routes to campus. Bikes can be brought onto buses via dedicated bike racks on the front of the bus.
- Transit. Trains do not currently go all the way to campus, but bus lines run along: 4th, Broadway, 33rd, 41st and 49th. Rapid buses that come to campus include the R4, 44, 84, and 99.
- Driving. Carpooling is encouraged for those who drive to campus. Parking is available near the buildings, but there is a fee. For occasional car trips to campus, Evo, Modo, and Zipcar car-shares have designated parking.
The City of Vancouver offers a Newcomers guide to Vancouver and a First Peoples: Guide for Newcomers.