Public Art Registry
Centennial Rocket
Photo: Lilli Wong
Centennial Rocket
Centennial Rocket - photo by Lilli Wong
Cambie Street
Cambie Street Plaza
South end of Cambie St. Bridge, W. side of bridge entrance
stainless steel & bronze
In place
City of Vancouver
Van. Transportation Club/Sheet Metal Workers Union
Description of work
A 12-foot-long stylized rocket ship made of bronze and stainless steel sits on top of an 11-foot-high stainless steel base. The design of the rocket ship looks like a 1950s Hollywood movie space ship. The design was originally created in 1936 for the Sheet Metal Workers Local 280 float for the Pacific National Exhibition Jubilee Parade on the occasion of the City of Vancouver's 50th birthday. It was designed by Lew Parry and made into a sculpture, built by Neon Products, which was sited at the first Vancouver Air Terminal from 1939 to 1972 when it was scrapped because of rust. In 1985 the Vancouver Transportation Club and the Sheet Metal Workers Union 280 decided to build a replica to celebrate Vancouver's 100th birthday. They located Lew Parry and he still had the original plans. This time the rocketship was built from more durable materials by Terminal Sheet Metal and the Local 280 metal workers. The Rocket was exhibited at Expo 86 and then donated to the city. It was moved by helicopter to it's current site. A Centennial Time Capsule is housed in the base of the rocket, scheduled to be opened 50 years from 1986. It includes items such as an Expo 86 passport with stamps of all the pavilions and recorded messages from local celebrities and many other things. The City accepted the Centennial Rocket and a site was found for it in the small plaza at the SW end of the Cambie Street bridge. -information from the website of SMW280
Artist statement
1985 version: "Presented to the citizens of Vancouver, this rocket is to commemorate the Centennial and the celebration of Expo 86 World's Exposition. This rocket is a symbol of the role played by craftsmanship and transportation in the growth of Vancouver." (from the plaque on the east side of the base)
Send us your feedback. Please tell us about your experience or wrong or missing information. 
Silk UI Framework Simulation Device
Resize the window to preview the page in target devices.
Open the settings to change the simulation device options.