Last Sunday I took an early morning ride out to the semi-abandoned , post-apocalyptic looking Strathcona Science Park that sits at the Eastern edge of Edmonton.
I find this park to be a weird and wonderful trip back in time. It was created in 1979 to protect an archeological site from industrial encroachment. It enjoyed a brief life as public science center but this was soon ended (by provincial budget cuts, I suspect) and it has remained frozen in time since then. My wife remembers a junior high school trip when her class went to the park to explore the varying science displays in each of the bunker-like subterranean pods. On a bicycle related note, she recalls that it was the first time she saw a bike hooked up to produce electricity. The park is still maintained by the province in a minor way. The grass is cut and the garbage cans emptied. However, the interpretive buildings and the archeological lab and site have been abandoned and allowed to slowly crumble into a decrepit state. The first time I cycled out to this park it seemed to me that it was the ideal site to shoot a low budget post-apocalypse SF film.
I have a fondness for public park architecture of this period , no doubt instilled during the numerous camping trips my family went on when I was a child. Ah, nostalgia. Though it is a sad waste of resources, it also seems ironically appropriate that a park established to protect an archeological site is itself crumbling into a historic relic.
As a tribute to a fine blogger ( Yes, I mean you Steve!) I have included a few pictures of signs with historical information about the park’s site.