Thanks to an interesting project by Josh Hite and Scott Billings I had the opportunity to visit the secret stairway under the Burrard Bridge last week. It’s been abandoned since the 1930s, and when I visited I could understand why. I imagine it would be a creepy place at night because it certainly was during the day.
The guy in this photo turned out to be an upstairs neighbour from my building who I never see. It was hilarious to run into him in such a random place. He and his girlfriend were helping out as actors during the filming.
The metal column going down the centre of the staircase was set temporarily for their project of filming the interior of the stairway in a helical movement. I didn’t see much of the filming because they were still setting up but I was really impressed by how much equipment they brought all the way to the bottom of the stairs. The only way in is from the top of the bridge because the city bricked up the bottom entrance ages ago.
There was plenty of ancient graffiti covering the stairs and walls, which indicates people have been able to sneak in there in the past. I wonder if the Department of Eternal Art is still around….?
The whole experience gave me a killer case of vertigo but it was an amazing opportunity to get into this space which is normally restricted from public access.