Vancouver couples will now have a chance to commemorate their love in a unique way after a much anticipated love lock sculpture was unveiled at Queen Elizabeth Park this afternoon.
The sculpture has been in the works for over a year. Last July, NPA councillor George Affleck called on the city to find a permanent place for the locks and in August, the city asked residents for feedback to decide on the location of the sculpture. Residents could choose from a list of 13 city parks and Queen Elizabeth Park was one of the top three choices. It was approved by the Vancouver Park Board in October.
The Park Board approved the steel sculpture of four entwined couples entitled ‘Love in the Rain’ this May.
The piece is designed by Vancouver artist Bruce Voyce and, according to the Park Board, celebrates the shelter that love brings and the union that it forms.
One young couple from Surrey has already locked in their love with a Labour Day proposal at the love locks sculpture. The Park Board says Arvinder Gill and Sukhdeep Uppal is the first couple to declare their love with an engraved padlock at the newly installed sculpture.
The sculpture, which cost the city $50,000, has been installed close to Bloedel Conservatory in Queen Elizabeth Park which, at 152 metres above sea level, is the highest point in Vancouver.
The sculpture addresses concerns raised about the number of love locks being attached to fencing on the Burrard Bridge and sites in southeast False Creek. Lovers used to attach their locks to the railings of the bridge, but they were removed in 2013 over fears of structural damage. They re-appeared on the seawall, but were also removed.
The love-lock tradition spans continents, with cities like Paris, Rome, New York and Moscow all having unofficial public spots, where couples can celebrate their love by hanging a love lock.
Names, initials or romantic messages are typically inscribed on the padlock and the key is thrown away to symbolize an unbreakable bond.
In a true West Coast tradition, at the Vancouver love locks sculpture, couples will be able to drop their key into a collection box.
The location of the love lock sculpture in Queen Elizabeth Park: