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A jigsaw puzzle image of Canadian Pacific Railway locomotive 374 - Date unknown Photographer unknown.
18 August 2017
Canadian Pacific Railway
Locomotive Number 374


Vancouver British Columbia - Engine number 374 was the Canadian Pacific Railway steam locomotive which pulled the first transcontinental passenger train to arrive in Vancouver, arriving on 23 May 1887.
 
This was a year after sister Engine number 371 brought the first train to cross Canada into Port Moody, roughly 20 miles (32 kilometres) to the east.
 
Number 374 was built by the CPR in 1886 and was one of eight similar steam locomotives built that year in their Montreal shops.
 
While 371 was scrapped in 1915, number 374 was completely rebuilt in 1914 and continued in service until 1945.
 
Because of its historical significance, it was donated it to the City of Vancouver upon its retirement, who placed it on display in Kitsilano Beach Park.
 
It suffered greatly from exposure to the elements and a lack of upkeep.
 
It remained there until 1983, when a group of railway enthusiasts launched an effort to restore the engine in time for Expo 86.
 
It was moved from the beach and spent the next few years in different warehouses around Vancouver while a crew of volunteers undertook the herculean task of restoring the engine.
 
Completed in time for Expo 86, number 374 was put on display on the railway turntable at the renovated former CPR Drake Street Roundhouse where it became a prime attraction.
 
In 1988 the Expo 86 site, including the Drake Street Roundhouse, was sold to Concord Pacific, and in the course of the False Creek North Development Plan, the developer agreed to convert and expand the buildings to comprise the Roundhouse Community Centre.
 
The Community Centre was designed by Baker McGarva Hart and completed in 1997.
 
The plan for the development had made no mention of the 374 and it was temporarily housed inside the roundhouse itself while it was decided what to do with the engine.
 
Successful fundraising efforts were undertaken by the Vancouver Parks Board and the Lions Club, among others, and a year later the new Engine 374 Pavilion was completed.
 
Now a central feature of the Yaletown area redevelopment, the Engine 374 Pavilion is open daily for public viewing from 10:00 to 16:00 during the summer and 11:00 to 15:00 in the winter.
 
An anniversary celebration is held annually on the Sunday before Victoria Day.
 
The pavilion is staffed entirely by volunteers from the West Coast Railway Association and on average sees roughly 41,000 visitors per year as of 2015.
 
Author unknown.

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