Steam Clock, Gastown

Built in 1977, this Steam Clock is a work of functioning art. Built with lights for both day and night viewing, cast in bronze with glass panes for easy visibility and bronze plaques detailing the function of this clock, it is easy to see why so many people admire its design. CREDIT: Venture Vancouver, SOURCE: www.venturevancouver.com

The Gastown Steam Clock in the Fall months is both a source of heat due to its mechanisms as well as a popular tourist attraction.

STATS

Type:

Landmark

Season:

All Seasons

Weather:

All Weather

Time:

20 minutes

Cost:

Free

What to bring:

Camera, Sense of Curiosity

Built in 1977, the Gastown Steam Clock located in Vancouver, B.C., is a popular tourist attraction. Although its surroundings are impressive enough, this clock is one of the few rare fully functional Steam powered clocks in the world. Every hour on the hour the Clock will play the Westminster tune "Big Ben" and let out an amazing show of steam. Working both day and night, an opportunity to watch this Steam Clock in action is always avaliable.

The Gastown Steam Clock was built in 1977 and a more recent addition to the historic Gastown, the clock was funded by merchants and local property owners to mimic some of the world's first steam powered clocks. It runs on a steam engine which can be seen from the amount of steam released from the top of the clock. Only a few of these fully functional clocks still exist, making this particular clock a rare sight.

This clock added to the prestige of the neighbourhood which suffered through the 1960's as it housed a significant portion of homeless living in the city of Vancouver and was rehabilitated in the 1970's. This story is recounted on a plaque found as the bottom of the Steam clock.

At each hour, on the hour, a fantastic blast of steam and a series of chimes, a familiar tune borrowed from the Westminster chimes "Big Ben", mark the passing of another hour in this historic little town. Many people gather at the clock's location and wait for the chimes and accompanying whistles which follow.

Visitors to Gastown can clearly identify the location of this handcrafted clock as steam is continuously released throughout the day as well as its distinctive chimes on the quarter hour (short) and the hour (full chimes).

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Photo and Image Gallery

Built in 1977, the Gastown Steam Clock has ushered in a new appreciation for this technology, utilizing steam power to keep the time on this handcrafted and beautiful piece. On the hour, visitors crowd the beautiful clock as it whistles out its hourly tune to the delight of those around it.
The Steam Clock, built in 1977 is a work of functioning art. Built with lights for both day and night viewing, cast in bronze with glass panes for easy visibility and bronze plaques detailing the function of this clock. The Clock is most popular in the summer with the highest volume of tourists.
The Steam Clock is a versatile tourist attraction, it is built for both day and nighttime viewing. The clock is equipped with lights and glass panes for easy viewing, as well, the four dials are lit up at night. The steam billowing from its top makes it look very ethereal.


Location of Steam Clock

Use the interactive map below to locate and explore the areas around Steam Clock

On the Intersection of Cambie St. and Water St.
Gastown


Map of Gastown, Downtown Vancouver

Click the brown GEMS on the map to navigate to the other activities within this region

Things to do in Gastown

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