Home to about 56000
people over 3481.1 hectares
, Port Coquitlam is located in the Eastern portion of Greater Vancouver
, British Columbia
, bordered by the Pitt
and Fraser River
s to the East and South, and by Burke Mountain
to the North. Port Coquitlam is located approximately 28 kilometres east of downtown Vancouver
. It touches Coquitlam
, Pitt Meadows
. To persons from Vancouver's lower mainland, it is often known as PoCo. It was, of course, a port, but the name Coquitlam comes from the name of the First-Nations
, which by best accounts means "small red salmon".
The land that is now Port Coquitlam was home to the Kwantlen First-Nations Tribe, and the enslaved Kwikwitlem band. The first european settlers, the McLean family, settled in the area in 1853, and in 1885, a railway junction called the Westminster Junction is built. Many people are attracted by the opportunity for logging and farming in the area, and the population increases. In 1891, the land falls under the jurisdiction of Coquitlam. The Canadian Pacific Railway installs its freight operations in 1911, and the population of 1300 persons on the land known as Westminster Junction incorporates to become Port Coquitlam in 1913, taking some of the land (and some debt) from Coquitlam, and some from Maple Ridge. James Mars became the city's first mayor. From the 1940s until the late 1970s, the city's population doubles every ten years. Port Coquitlam is British Columbia's largest debt-free city. The current mayor is Scott Young.
Features of Port Coquitlam include Mary Hill, the Hyde Creek Nature Reserve, the Glenayre Scottish Country Dance Club, and the Centennial Stamp Club. A park of particular importance to residents of Port Coquitlam isMinnekehada Regional Park.
Terry Fox was born in Port Coquitlam, and to his honour, there is the Terry Fox Library, the Terry Fox Theatre, and Terry Fox Secondary School.
Port Coquitlam has 15 elementary schools, 5
middle schools, and 2 senior secondary schools. Port Coquitlam's official flower is the azalea, and has been since 1978.