CIVIC LEADERS | R.I.P. Mayor Art Phillips :: 1930 – 2013
He beat Mr. Peanut, stopped freeways and saved Chinatown and Gastown.
He met Mitzi Gaynor (Vancouver’s Sweetheart”), rode a horse with élan, and – as pointed out by Canada’s National Newspaper – was a “handsome man with an enviable crop of hair.”
Art Phillips will be remembered for his gentlemanly nature, his philanthropy, and for his vision of Vancouver where quality of life was the measure of greatness (see excerpts from his inaugural speech, below).
Art Phillips, along with that other Arthur (Erickson) represented Vancouverites’ wishes for a better, people-centric and more equitable city during that brief shining period in the 1970s when change was in the air and made concrete. He was irreplaceable and will be missed.
“This photo shows Mr. Peanut listening in to incumbent Mayor Art Phillips talk with an unidentified man. It’s the only photo from the files of The Vancouver Sun showing the two mayoral candidates together.”
Art Phillips, Mayor of Vancouver, stands on the roof of Vancouver City Hall in November 1972 Photo > The Globe and Mail
29 March 1974 – Mayor Art Phillips accepted a challenge to take the bus from city hall to a meeting downtown. The challenge stemmed from his recent suggestion that motorists leave home in favour of bus travel. After five minutes wait, he hopped on the bus and chatted with passengers for the 12-minute ride to the Board of Trade building. Photo > John Denniston, PNG
1975. Mayor Art Phillips in the saddle. Photo > Ralph Bower, PNG
CVA 2010-006.304 – PNE Parade, 16 August 1975 Photo > Ernie H. Reksten
CANADA 24 October 1973 Vancouver $1.00 on Hibrite Paper in Block of 4 Stamps Mint NH
CVA 772-255 – Burrard [Street] and Dunsmuir [Street] looking West
Photo > iioe
Discovery Square at Burrard Station renamed Art Phillips Park. Illustration of Burrard Station by the amazing Ron Love.
I had originally suggested Robson Square be renamed in Art Phillips’ honour, but the idea to rename Discovery Square came from Carole Taylor, Phillips’ wife, who soon after my column ran, emailed me that Phillips was really attached to Discovery Square.
“I won’t have the story exactly right, but apparently BowMac was one of three owners of that triangle space when Art was mayor and they decided to move up to Broadway. So the land was for sale, presumably to put a building there. Art thought it was the perfect place for some open space, but also to reserve for a transit stop. He went to the surrounding owners, including Bentall and said, ‘You would benefit from open space and possibly a transit stop here, so how about you guys putting up half the money? The city will put up the other half and we will preserve this open space for the public.’ Voila, open space, flowering trees and transit.”
It didn’t hurt that Phillips also happened to walk his dog, Daisy, there every day.
– Pete McMartin, “Art Phillips Park”
Photo of Carole Taylor and Art Phillips > Vancouver’s amazing Alex Waterhouse-Hayward
Voony’s Blog | Block 51: the North Plaza
Culture Seen | In Vancouver: Mr. Peanut, the nut who made headlines
The Vancouver Sun | Photos: Former Vancouver mayor Art Phillips through the years
City of Vancouver | Art Phillips Park
★ The History of Metropolitan Vancouver | The Paradise Makers: A Pivotal Year
★ City Caucus | Mayor’s Inaugural Address, 3 January 1973 PDF
City Caucus | TEAM members take a walk down memory lane
The Globe and Mail | Former Vancouver mayor Art Phillips dies
The Vancouver Sun | Reformist changed city’s direction PDF
★ Price Tags | The Context of the Times: The Art Phillips Era
The Vancouver Sun | Art Phillips dead at age 82: Former mayor, set the stage for Vancouver’s future as a livable city
★ The Globe and Mail | Obituary by Rod Mickleburgh :: Visionary mayor Art Phillips remade Vancouver PDF
The Vancouver Sun | Friends remember Art Phillips, a ‘lovely and inspiring’ man PDF
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- 2013/03/31 / 10:43
- ARCHITECTS + ARCHITECTURE, ART + ARTISTS, CITIES | VANCOUVER, designKULTUR✭ STARS, URBAN PLANNING, VANCOUVERISM
- Alex Waterhouse-Hayward, All Seasons Park, Art Phillips, Art Phillips Park, Arthur Erickson, Blocks 51/61/71, BowMac, Carole Taylor, Discovery Square, Four Season Hotels, Greenpeace, Mitzi Gaynor, Mr. Peanut for Mayor, Pete McMartin, Pierre Trudeau, Ron Love, Setty Pendakur, Stanley Park, TEAM, The Electors' Action Movement, Vancouver, Vancouver 1973, Vincent Trasov, Yippies