Location: North side of the Fraser Valley (Dewdney trunk road the north)
The largest commercial centre in the region is Haney Place, in the town core, site of the Municipal government offices and many recreational amenities. These include: Memorial Gardens; an art gallery, Cam Neely Arena; an award winning leisure centre; Centennial Centre (for seniors); a local curling rink; and a martial arts centre.
Maple Ridge continues to be one of the most affordable communities. The average price in Spring 1996 for a single-detached home in Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows was $218,000; $138,000 for a condo. Pines with acreage price higher.
|Education: There are 24 elementary, four senior-secondary and three independent schools in the district. There is also a school for children with severe disabilities. Maple Ridge is one of eight school districts supporting the Douglas College two-year university transfer program|
|Transportation: West Coast Express, BC Transit bus service, Lougheed Hwy. and Dewdney Trunk Rd. major arteries
Recreation: Golden Ears Provincial Park, the UBC Research Forest, Kanaka Creek Regional Park and Rolley Lake Provincial Park are all with- in a 45-minute drive from the town centre.
Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows has a combined area of 78,905 hectares.
Pitt Meadows, which lies west of Maple Ridge, is separated from Coquitlam by the Pitt River and Pitt River Bridge. Maple Ridge is separated from its neighbor to the east, Mission, by more bridges. The two communities, which share a number of amenities, are bounded by the Fraser River on the south and mountain ranges on the north.
The area’s first inhabitants, the Coast Salish Indians, viewed the same natural fixtures when they lived and hunted on the land for centuries before the first European settlers arrived in 1858.
The settlers, many of whom had worked for Hudson’s Bay Company, claimed land in the area through the major trading post in Fort Langley across the Fraser River.
Their new life was harsher than they had imagined and few were hardy enough to survive.
The Scottish-born John Maclvor and Samuel Robertson were two pioneers who successfully turned rainforest into workable farmland.
More settlers arrived with the advent of the Federal Free Homestead Act of 1874, which said land would sell for $1 per acre to anyone strong enough to clear, fence and set up residency in three years.
When the municipality was incorporated in the fall of 1874, 40 people were settled along the Fraser River. Maple Ridge was named after the ridge of Maple trees on Maclvor’s dairy farm, the first in the area.
After 1885, the arrival of the railway attracted more people to the area, who moved inland and started the neighborhoods of Whonnock, Ruskin, Pitt Meadows, Webster’s Comer and Albion.
The opening of the Lougheed Highway in 1931 prompted a further burst of activity and development in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge. The interest in the communities, still rural but close to urban centres, continues to this day.
The local population has almost doubled in the past decade, and the two communities continue to be among the fastest growing in the Lower Mainland.
As of 1995, the population of Pitt Meadows is estimated at 13,500 and the population of Maple Ridge is estimated at 57,000.
Fort Langley and other municipalities south of the Fraser River are only a five-minute ferry trip from Maple Ridge.
The Albion Ferry, on River Road near 240 Street, shuttles vehicles and walk-on passengers to Fort Langley seven days a week from 5 a.m. to 2 a.m.
During daytime hours, two 24-vehicle ferries travel back and forth about every 15 minutes. But give yourself at least an extra 45 minutes if traveling during rush hours. For more information, call 660-8770
Pitt Meadows airport offers a variety of services, including daily flights to Victoria, charter flights, helicopter rides, flying and parachute lessons and sightseeing tours.
The 280-hectare airport is equipped with three runways, the longest of which is 1,310 meters and ideal for all but the largest corporate jets accessing the community There is also a seaplane access with a float plane dock along the Fraser River.
The airport is located on Baynes Road south of Ford Road. Call 465-8977 for more information.
BC Transit started serving Ridge-Meadows in December 1991. Link buses provide most of the municipalities’ local routes between 284 Street in Maple Ridge and 189A Street in Pitt Meadows.
Regular 40-passenger buses serve regional routes, connecting the districts with Coquitlam, Vancouver and the rest of the Lower Mainland. Regional buses generally run every half hour from about 4:30 a.m. through to approximately 1:30 a.m.
Local transit timetables are available at:
|West Cost Express
West Coast Express operates five trains westbound in the morning and give trains eastbound in the afternoon. There are stations and Park & Ride facilities in Mission, Port Haney, Maple Meadows, Pitt Meadows, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody and Vancouver. On going passengers may transfer free of charge to connecting BC Transit services: SkyTrain, SeaBus and Bus. BC Transit bus schedules are timed to meet West Coast Express at suburban stations.
Fares to Downtown Vancouver from Pitt Meadows, Maple Meadows and Port Haney are $5.00 for one-way and $9.75 for return.