Cascadia 2014

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Seattle: The City of Neighbourhoods

Our third stop on the Cascadia tour was Seattle, a drastic contrast from the bustling cosmopolitan Vancouver to the grungy and funkier city. As soon as we arrived, we threw down our bags and mowed down on burritos and ice cream at Pike Place Market before heading off to check out the Bullitt Center. Impressions of Seattle included loud, dynamic streetscapes with friendly people and engaging neighbourhoods to explore.

Coastal Cruising

As the rain begins to lessen, a wedge of sun is setting over the horizon and bringing our final day in Seattle to an end. This morning, we sat together in a park (accompanied by mugs of tea and ziplock bags of peanut butter) for our second sharing circle. The chaotic nature of our trip encourages constant motion for both our mind and bodies, so this time to reflect and share our thoughts is inestimately valuable.

But, what is sustainability?

When the Cascadia Sustainability Field School visited Vancouver (in May, 2014) we had a chance to reflect on the variety of ways “sustainability” is imagined.

Our first foray into the city was a downtown walking tour lead by well- known Vancouver urban superstar, former city counselor etc. Gord Price. For Gord, sustainability represented a formidable challenge for a city that was founded on movement (of goods, information and people) and the exploitation of resources. Vancouver, it could be said, was about exploiting the hell out of heaven.

Sustainable Mating

In Vancouver BC driving just doesn't make sense anymore. The city is almost entirely walkable and when you can't walk the public transportation system is efficient, cheap, and well organized. 

Industry Meets Artistry

What was once was an area heavily used for industry has been transformed into a vibrant local gem. Minutes the hustle and bustle of the city of Vancouver, Granville Island is a popular destination for both local residents and tourists. Our task was to find out how the area has become what it is today, as well as discover why the conscious decision was made to allow automobiles access to the island.

An enlightening experience at O.U.R Ecovillage

From learning how to cob, to farm using the philosophy of permaculture, and how to build structures following the traditional timber framing method. The day spent here was educational and spiritual. Learning to listen to and work with the land and each other to build a sustainable community. In the words of Brandy Gallagher, "By the community, for the community, through the community..."

-Learning to Cob with Pat-


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