Description

Community members supporting the Black Lives Matter movement blocked the Georgia Viaduct to motor vehicle traffic for several days in June.

The demonstration was supported by Vancouver’s Black Lives Matter chapter. Organizers say the location was chosen to honour Hogan’s Alley, a Black community in Vancouver’s Strathcona neighbourhood that was razed when the city constructed the viaducts.

Significance

While the protesters reflected sentiments shared by thousands of demonstrators around the world, the Vancouver blockade had more immediate, and local goals. With the viaducts scheduled to be dismantled within the next few years, the Hogan’s Alley Society has  been in negotiations with the city to turn the land into a land trust to be stewarded by the Black community.

Background

The area around the viaducts was once the heart of a thriving Black community established in the early 1900s known as Hogan’s Alley.

Centred between Prior and Union and Main and Jackson streets, the area was a cultural hub for Vancouver’s Black community, which became ghettoized and neglected by the city. Over time, residents were pushed out as industry and infrastructure — including the viaducts — moved in, dispersing the community.

In 2018 the City of Vancouver passed a plan for Northeast False Creek that included specific plans for the Hogan’s Alley area, with the city calling it “a significant opportunity to re-establish a focal point for the Black community in Vancouver.”

Sources


Prepared by:  VCPC Chronology Committee
Last Updated: December 14, 2020