Gastown, along with Yaletown, forms the downtown district of Vancouver. Today, Gastown is a National Historic Site but has had something of a checkered history. Named for “Gassy” Jack Deighton, famed for opening the first saloon in Gastown in 1867, the area was primarily an industrial part of the city, home to Hastings Mill and seaport. The Great Depression, however, took its toll on Gastown and the neighborhood, despite being one of the city's oldest, never fully recovered. Considered a low income area, with associated social problems through much of the remaining part of the twentieth century, Gastown's fortunes only began to turn in the early 2000s. Historic buildings and cobbled streets, combined with some serious urban regeneration, rapidly saw Gastown begin to gentrify and today the neighborhood can proudly boast that it is a model for inner city regeneration. While retaining much of its attractive historic architecture the neighborhood is a highly sought after location for young professionals seeking to locate to a modern, trendy and fashionable urban environment. The resident profile is perhaps less diverse than in other parts of the city, with a high majority of small/single households mostly comprised of young professionals. Recent developments of newly built high end housing, including condo buildings have increased the diversity of real estate in Gastown but the demographic remains strongly focused on this group.
As with neighboring Yaletown, forming part of the city's downtown district means that Gastown is at the heart of Vancouver's transport links. Those seeking real estate in downtown Vancouver will rarely have long commutes, however, the links to downtown mean that accessing the rest of Vancouver and the Lower Mainland is probably at it's easiest in both Gastown and Yaletown. Information on transport links provided via SkyTrain and Translink can be found on the relevant websites.
Schools and Universities
Schools in Gastown are provided by Vancouver School Board and there are also a growing number of privately run educational establishments in the neighborhood, including several focusing on the creative arts and on business education – details can be found by clicking this link.
Recreation and Facilities
Gastown is primarily known for its shopping, nightlife and eating experiences. There are many local, independent boutiques and designers located in the area and, for interior design, Gastown is the only place to shop in Vancouver! John Fleuvog established his now world-famous brand in Gastown back in the 1970s and the company's flagship store remains located in the heart of trendy Gastown. Nightlife and eating experiences abound in the area, with several internationally renowned restaurants well established in Gastown. Also home to some of the city's best known and best loved bars including at least two of the Vancouver's must see (and must be seen in) cocktail bars – L'Abattoir and the Diamond there is also a fantastically great range of night clubs. Nightlife is never, ever, dull in Gastown!