The Woodward’s Building Neon Sign (Vancouver, BC)

The historic Woodward’s Building neon sign in Vancouver, BC as seen in 2015.

Once of the Canadian city of Vancouver, BC’s most famous historic neon signs is the giant ‘W’ sign that stood atop the city’s Woodward’s Building and lit up the nighttime skyline for decades.

Erected in 1944 atop a replica of the Eiffel Tower, the Woodward’s neon sign beaconed shoppers to come and shop at the Woodward’s department store for nearly half a century. The illuminated ‘W’ evokes many warm memories for whole generations of Vancouvians.

In 1993, the Woodward’s building closed its doors due to declining fortunes and a shift in the city’s shopping geography to shopping malls, etc. elsewhere in the city. In 2006, the vast bulk of the original building (minus the original portion from 1903) was demolished to make room for housing complexes and new businesses. In 2010, the W sign was replicated and the copy reinstalled on top of the new Woodward’s building while the original was relocated to the grounds outside The Charles Bar, which is located at the site of the former building.

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(Image copyright: Xicotencatl. Used via Wikimedia Commons per CC Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.)

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