Richmond is home to approximately 200,000 people spread over 50 square miles (about 1/3 the size of Surrey). That population figure is even more astonishing when one considers the fact that the majority of the eastern half is designated farmland as per the ALR (agricultural land reserve) of Metro Vancouver. This limitation has forced Richmond to build upwards rather than sprawl outwards. Richmond is also limited in building height due to its proximity to the airport.
So what does city hall do? Well, they develop a master plan for a new downtown centered around No. 3 Road. Thank the RAV line as it was the catalyst for most of this. The fact that Richmond was denied rapid transit for so long is straight up fucktarded. The development around the line is mainly residential with some commercial as well (see the Aberdeen Centre expansion to the left). Now with the new rapid transit ride maybe the people of Richmond will drive less. One can only hope.
The Oval is a great addition to the community. It’s located just outside of the city centre, on then northwestern edge. Once the Olympics are over and done with, it will house 2 NHL sized rinks, as well as a community centre. It will also be the centre-piece for a new waterfront development, consisting mainly of residential condos but will also include commercial and public amenity development. With the advent of the RAV line and the development of the Olympic Oval and its surrounding lands, Richmond is poised to be the premier destination south of the Fraser River.
Now, I know that Surrey would like that distinction, but that place is a suburban mess. Heck those idiots were having a party for a brand new Sprawl Mart that just opened up this past weekend. Egregious. Look you, Surrey lacks an identity as one individual described it as Anytown USA or for that matter Prince George with more people. Score one for Surrey, fucking morons.
Back to Richmond as I’ve wasted far too much time talking about Slurrey and all its problems. The last time The Urban Dweller drove through Richmond 12 construction cranes were counted, the boom continues. That didn’t even include the cranes near River Rock Casino. It is also a very walkable city, one can easily walk throughout “downtown” Richmond. It’s home to approximately 100,000 jobs with offices for big companies like Microsoft, MDA and Nintendo. Richmond has a lot going for it right now and will continue to do so into the future. Its proximity to Vancouver doesn’t hurt either.
So Surrey may have more people, but that doesn’t make it a great “city”. Fuck if that was the case Mexico City would be the greatest city on earth. Although those asshats will be quick to tell you otherwise.