Title and statement of responsibility area
Photographs of Council meetings and special events
General material designation
Other title information
Title statements of responsibility
- Source of title proper: Title based on records schedule.
- Variations in title: Formerly titled as 'Photographs - Council and special events'
Level of description
Edition statement of responsibility
Class of material specific details area
Statement of scale (cartographic)
Statement of projection (cartographic)
Statement of coordinates (cartographic)
Statement of scale (architectural)
Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)
Dates of creation area
1981, 1991-1998 (Creation)
- Vancouver (B.C.). Engineering Services
Physical description area
ca. 3500 photographs
Publisher's series area
Title proper of publisher's series
Parallel titles of publisher's series
Other title information of publisher's series
Statement of responsibility relating to publisher's series
Numbering within publisher's series
Note on publisher's series
Archival description area
Name of creator
Since its foundation, Engineering Services (or, as it was referred to until 1995, the Engineering Department) has been the largest department in the City administration, providing many of the City's mandated functions for developing and maintaining the City's infrastructure of roads and bridges, waterworks, sewers and sanitation.
The Vancouver Incorporation Act required the appointment of an engineer, and the City did so under Bylaw #1 (1886). Despite technological changes, the department has remained remarkably consistent in functional responsibilities: over the years, the Engineering Department/Engineering Services has been responsible for the construction and maintenance of streets, lanes, sewers, water works, and bridges, as well as for traffic management, sanitation, garbage collection, and parking. With the rapid growth of the city, the Department’s role changed from a supervisory role (overseeing and inspecting the work of contractors) to having full-scale operations divisions.
The City Engineer first reported to the Board of Works (1886-1956), then to the Board of Administration (1956-1974), and subsequently to the City Manager (1974-).
There were a few instances of major reorganization in the history of the Engineering Department. Following a departmental review by external consultants in 1954, the department underwent a major restructuring of its organizational framework. Formerly, divisions had been based on the type of operation each performed. The review called for three basic divisions. One major division was for administration and design and the other for operations. Each of these divisions would oversee the different functions as they related to design or operation. A third division for traffic management continued to exist in the same fashion as before the rearrangement. This structure remained in place for only a few years.
Another major reorganization occurred in 1966 when the Electrical Department was incorporated as a division within the Engineering Department (impetus for this change came from the formation of the Permits and Licenses Department which took over inspection activities while Engineering took over engineering and works aspects.)
The following individuals have served as City Engineer (from 1995, the City Engineer was also referred to as “General Manager” of the then renamed Engineering Services):
• John P. Lawson, 1886-1890;
• Henry B. Warren, 1890-1891;
• Thomas H. Tracy, 1891-1905;
• William A. Clement, 1905-1911;
• Frederick L. Fellowes, 1911-1924;
• Charles Brakenridge, 1924-1946;
• Charles A. Battershill, 1946-1949;
• John C. Oliver, 1949-1956;
• Randolph M. Martin, 1956-1971;
• Gordon H. Lawson, 1971-1974;
• William H. Curtis, 1974-1991;
• David Rudberg, 1991-
• Tom Timm, –2010
• Peter Judd 2010–2015
Functions, occupations and activities:
The broad range of functions of the Department has included:
- Streets and bridges design and maintenance, including snow/ice removal and sanding;
- Sewerage and drainage planning and maintenance,
- Water supply and distribution,
- Refuse collection and disposal,
- Transportation planning and traffic management, including accommodating for special events,
- Street lighting and utilities,
- Inspection responsibilities (until the creation of the Permits and Licenses Department),
- City planning responsibilities (under the direction of the Town Planning Commission) until the creation of the Planning Department in 1954,
- Street Decoration (in conjunction with the Street Decoration Committee) since 1954.
Scope and content
Series consists of selected photographs and negatives which relate to Council presentations and internal City events. Events photographed include: Council presentations to retirees, Civic Merit awards, Freedom of the City, Citizen Peace awards, 25 years service awards, Inaugural Council, Mayor and Council photographs, visiting dignitaries, Engineering retirement parties, plaque honoring employees who gave their lives at work presentation, Tree Canada Foundation presentation, International Day to Eliminate Racial Discrimination, Civic recognitions and civic awards. Engineering staff Jack Bell, Roger Kwan, Barb Stetski, and Jeannette Black served as City photographers and attended these events at the request of the City Clerk or department managers. Arranged chronologically.
Immediate source of acquisition
Transferred from Office of the City Clerk in 1986 and 1993, and by Engineering in 1991, 1996, and 2000.
Photographic images in this series have been assigned catalogue numbers with the prefix CVA 782.
Language of material
Script of material
Location of originals
Availability of other formats
Restrictions on access
Files are frozen for preservation purposes. They are kept in cold storage and require 48 hours notice to view. Please consult an Archivist
Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication
File lists are available in hardcopy in the CVA 782 case file. Please consult Archives staff.
Series 174 (Civic awards files)
Some files contain prints.