Harris Road was

Looking Back: Main streets, heart of the community

Pitt Meadows’ main street, Harris Road, predates the incorporation of the municipality.

February is Heritage month and Heritage Week is Feb. 16-22, with this year’s theme: “Main Streets:  At the Heart of the Community.”

Pitt Meadows’ main street, Harris Road, predates the incorporation of the municipality, when it was little more than a dirt track running from Hammond Road on the southern end to Dewdney Trunk Road at the northern end.

The northern extension of Harris Road was completed soon after incorporation due, in part, to the effective lobbying of the developers of the Archbishop’s subdivision located on the banks of the Pitt River, just to the south of what is now Swan-e-set golf course.

The subdivision, intended for Catholic resettlement in the Vancouver area, never got off the ground, but at least access to the area was completed.

Today, Harris Road is lined with condominiums, small malls, and other businesses, such as restaurants and coffee shops, garages and gas stations, and beauty parlours.

But at one time, the road was lined with farms and a few mechanics, a general store and post office, a church and a school.

The rest of the land was bush and forest.

In 1914, two trains per day, one in the a.m. and one in the p.m., passed by and few vehicles, and likely no cars, used the route.

Today, more than 18,000 vehicles pass up and down the road each day and approximately 25 trains cross the route between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Harris Road was paved in the 1940s, given a traffic light at Lougheed Highway in the 1970s, widened in the 1980s, and a few years ago extended to Airport Way and given raised islands down most of its centre.

Most buildings that lined its route in the early days are now gone, but a surprising number remain and have managed to survive, in part, due to the evolution of their use.

Such is the case for the General Store and post office, which  evolved into a family residence, then into the home of the Pitt Meadows Museum and Archives.

One, the community church, has remained in continual use for the purpose it was originally built, making it the oldest such building in Pitt Meadows.

In celebration of our community’s main street, the museum will be at the Pitt Meadows Community Library on Saturday, Feb. 28 at 1:30 p.m. to present “Buildings through Time:  Harris Road Then and Now.”

Join us to celebrate the end of Heritage Month and learn more about the heritage buildings and sites that made and make up Harris Road, Pitt Meadows’ main street.


– By Leslie Norman, curator at Pitt Meadows Museum.


Just Posted

Maple Ridge’s tent city evacuation shelter closing

Becomes a night refuge only, then shuts for good March 31

Former Maple Ridge resident in Sonic Boom Music Fest

Aaron Graham will be featured at the upcoming Sonic Boom Music Festival

UPDATE: Styrofoam melting machine the cause of Saturday’s fire in Pitt Meadows

Fire spread quickly to surrounding Styrofoam and lumber

Looking Back: Books and haircuts

What do they have in common?

Bees facing high mortality after long, hard winter

Some Pitt Meadows beekeepers seeing half of their hives die

VIDEO: RCMP ask kids to help name soon-to-be police dogs

13 German shepherd puppies will be born this year

Horvat scores 16 seconds into OT as Canucks beat Blackhawks 3-2

Pettersson sets rookie scoring record for Vancouver

No injuries, pollution in Vancouver Harbour ship collision: Transport Canada

Transportation Safety Board says it has deployed a team of investigators look into the incident

Budget 2019: Five things to watch for in the Liberals’ final fiscal blueprint

Finance Minister Bill Morneau will release the Trudeau government’s final budget on Tuesday

New concussion guidelines launched for Canada’s Olympians, Paralympians

The guidelines will be in effect at this summer’s Pan American, Parapan American Games in Lima, Peru

Accused Surrey transit cop shooter’s bail hearing set for April

Daon Gordon Glasgow, 35, is accused of shooting Transit Police Constable Josh Harms, 27

Alphonso Davies doubtful for Canada game against French Guiana in Vancouver

Canada will be without injured captain Scott Arfield and veteran Will Johnson

Watchdog called after man who yelled racial slurs at B.C. vigil hurt during arrest

BC RCMP say man was ‘acting suspiciously’ at prayer vigil for victims of New Zealand mosque shootings

Most Read