Originally part of the Point Grey Municipality before the city was amalgamated in 1929, this park was first established in 1926 through a money bylaw. The name was decided upon through a community competition and is in commemoration of Sir James Douglas, first Governor of the Colony of British Columbia. Before being designated a park, this area was a logging camp in the 1870s and was later a grazing site for elk. In 1882 the acreage became the site for the first market garden south of False Creek.
In December of 1964 a local improvement money bylaw was passed allowing construction of a new $100,000 recreation facility at the park which has evolved, over many decades, into Douglas Park Community Centre.