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Historic SkyTrain and bus illustrations from Ron Love

A very early imagined illustration of the SkyTrain station environment by Ron Love for the Vancouver Regional Rapid Transit project. The rendering of Waterfront Station turned out to be quite different from final implementation. Click for a MUCH larger version!

Well! After seeing a couple of early SkyTrain drawings, Buzzer pal Jason Vanderhill went in search of the artist… and found Ron Love, a longtime architectural illustrator in Vancouver!

Ron was kind enough to let Jason take some photos of his early SkyTrain works, and Jason was kind enough to share with us here at the Buzzer :) Above is an early concept of the SkyTrain station environment: imagine what might have been at Waterfront!

SkyTrain photopaintings by Ron Love for the Vancouver Regional Rapid Transit project! Click for a MUCH larger version.

And here is a SkyTrain photopainting—an illustration done over an existing photograph to show what the guideways might look like. Wow!

Illustration of a Denman development from 1972 by Ron Love. (Reader Michael has said it's the West End Community Centre, which opened at Denman and Haro on 20 May 1976.) Note the cute little bus :) Click for a MUCH larger version.

Jason also sent along a very early rendering by Ron from 1972, perhaps one of his earliest in Vancouver, featuring a mall complex near Denman. Not really SkyTrain related, but Jason pointed out “the very charming split window trolley in the bottom right hand corner of the drawing.”

What a fascinating glimpse at a Vancouver that might have been — thank you very much to Ron and Jason for sharing!


  • By Sheba, March 15, 2011 @ 9:22 am

    I love those glass tubes – that’s what I wish Skytrain stations looked like, instead of the mesh walls and partial roofs like the Expo line has.

  • By Michael, March 15, 2011 @ 9:25 am

    Hi Jhenifer – Thanks for posting these great renderings! The Denman street picture is actually the West End Community Centre, which opened at Denman and Haro on 20 May 1976. I suppose that would be the #5 Robson trolley heading towards English Bay. Cheers, Michael

  • By Jhenifer Pabillano - Buzzer Editor, March 15, 2011 @ 9:41 am

    Michael: thanks for letting me know! I’ll update the post to reflect.

  • By Derek Cheung CMBC, March 15, 2011 @ 12:01 pm

    In the set of photos showing Commercial & Broadway, the first photo shows a dewired Brill trolley with the operator attempting to rewire the left pole. The right pole is askew at an odd angle above the sidewalk…

    The third photo seems to show the elevated guideway along Commercial Drive; was the original plan to have the guideway here instead of its actual location just east of Commercial?

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