Port Moody, is named for Colonel Richard Clement Moody, Royal Engineers. It was established at the end of a trail that connected New Westminster with Burrard Inlet to defend New Westminster from potential attack from the US. After 1859, the town grew rapidly following land grants to Moody’s Royal Engineers after the sapper detachment was disbanded in 1863.
The construction of a transcontinental railroad was the condition that prompted British Columbia to enter into confederation in 1871. The small town received little attention until it was declared the terminus of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1879.
By 1881, the survey of Port Moody had begun. Both John Murray Sr. and Jr. assisted and, in fact, it was John Murray Jr. who named many of the streets after members of his family. The population quickly grew through the early 1880s. As the Western Terminus of the CPR almost everyone had high hopes that Port Moody would become a major west coast metropolis.
The railway was completed with the last spike driven at Craigellachie on November 7, 1885 and a train arriving at Port Moody the next day. The first scheduled passenger transcontinental train arrived on July 4, 1886, a date which is still celebrated during Golden Spike Days. Real estate prices soared, but soon fell flat when a branch line was built to Vancouver in 1887.
While many people lost a great deal of money and moved on, others, including real estate tycoon and ship captain, James A. Clarke, and several lumber mills, decided to remain. On April 7, 1913, Port Moody's Council met for the first time as a city. Some prominent early families were Ottley, Bennett, Johnson, Axford, Howard-Gibbon, Thurston, Roe, Abernathy, Elsdon, Campbell, Clarke, Murray and Appleyard.
Port Moody’s City Council consists of Mayor Mike Clay, Councillors Rick Glumac, Zoë Royer, Robert Vagramov, Barbara Junker, Meghan Lahti, Diana Dilworth. School Trustees representing Port Moody are Lisa Park and Keith Watkins. Elections are held province-wide on the third Saturday of October every four years. At that time, Port Moody residents will be asked to elect one mayor, six councillors and two trustees to the School District 43’s board.
Port Moody's City Manager is Kevin Ramsay. The Corporate Leadership Team includes: Remo Faedo, Fire Chief, PMFD; Paul Rockwood, General Manager, Financial Services; Ron Higo, General Manager, Community Services; Lynne Russell, Director of Library Services; Dorothy Shermer, City Clerk; James Stiver, General Manager, Development Services; Angie Parnell, General Manager, Corporate Services; Neal Carley, General Manager, Parks and Engineering.
Council meetings are held every second and fourth Tuesday of the month in Council Chambers (Inlet Theatre, 100 Newport Drive). They begin at 7 pm, are broadcast live on the City's website and are later broadcast on Shaw Cable 4 at 9:00 am the following Saturday.
The population of Port Moody in 2011 was 32,975. Port Moody has the largest Korean population ratio for any Canadian settlement above 10,000 residents. There are 2,160 people who are Korean, which is 6.6% of the city's population. Port Moody also has the 6th largest West Asian ratio (3.1%). The racial make up of the city is:
In 2006, the City of Port Moody had 27,512 people in 10,125 private dwellings living within its borders . This population growth was a 15% increase from the last census taken in 2001. Booming residential construction may account for part of this population growth; 8,015 residential dwellings are owned while 2,115 are rented. Port Moody also has the fourth highest municipal median family income at $70,239, with its largest employers being Eagle Ridge Hospital and School District 43.
Of its total population, 45% of Port Moody residents are legally married, 6.25% are in common-law relationships, 5.72% are divorced and 24% are single. 30% of its residents identify themselves as immigrants, slightly higher than the 27% Canadian average.
Mother Languages as reported by each person: Source:
Port Moody is served by School District 43, and offers two public high schools, two middle school and seven elementary schools.
Simon Fraser University is located in nearby Burnaby, while Douglas College maintains a campus in Coquitlam's Town Centre.
Port Moody's public library is located in the City Hall complex.
Over 41 streams flow through Port Moody to Burrard Inlet. The City of Port Moody Stream Stewardship Program manages urban streams, streamside vegetation and watersheds to support the production of fish and insect life for present and future generations. The Port Moody Ecological Society (PMES), a not-for-profit organization, works alongside the city to promote ecological awareness in the area. PMES volunteers operate a salmon and trout hatchery, a water quality lab and public awareness & community outreach programs.
The city has also banned the use of pesticides, and holds annual seminars on how to garden naturally at its Inlet Theatre. City Hall has been pesticide free since 1988.
Port Moody won a large number of provincial, national and international awards. In 2004, the city received a prestigious award from the UN sponsored International Awards for Liveable Communities in the category Planning for the Future. The city also received third place overall for cities of its size.
In 2008, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business highlighted Port Moody as the most fiscally responsible among British Columbia's 28 largest cities.
The traditional industrial sector in Port Moody is characterized by a deep-sea bulk loading terminal, two petrochemical distribution operations, a large wood products manufacturer, and a thermal electric generating station. Light industry, home-based business, and crafts and cultural businesses are also common in Port Moody, along with a growing health and social services sector.
Port Moody’s economic development focus in recent years has been on the arts and culture sector, including the development of a new Port Moody identity as the “City of the Arts.” An estimated 6% of employment in Port Moody is in arts and culture, which is one of the highest concentrations of arts and culture employment in the region.
In addition to Vancouver-based media outlets, Port Moody is served by the community newspaper The Tri-City News. Local radio: CKPM-FM is based in Port Moody. This radio station serves the Tri-Cities and beyond at 98.7 on the FM frequency.
As part of Metro Vancouver, Port Moody is connected to the TransLink public transit system by way of numerous bus routes. It also has the first station on the West Coast Express commuter rail line outside downtown Vancouver. Construction has been completed on the Evergreen Line, a spur of TransLink's LRT system that will link Port Moody to various stations in Coquitlam to the east and to the main Millennium Line to the southwest.
On June 16, 2004, Port Moody was officially trademarked as the “City of the Arts.” Historically, Port Moody was a destination for artists because of its low rent, beautiful scenery and ambient lighting. Today, it is home to annual festivals, arts groups and diverse facilities that help foster a creative community.
The Port Moody Arts Centre offers a number of fine arts and photography classes for residents of all ages, and has three diverse art galleries that feature a number of constantly changing works. The Port Moody Station Museum hosts a wide assortment of artifacts from Port Moody’s past, and has restored a heritage train venosta for tours. Arts Connect is an organization that connects artists from the Tri-Cities (Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody), and hosts regular artists’ circles. Artists can find studio space in Port Moody at 2709 Esplanade, with open house tours taking place every year in April.
Popular festivals in Port Moody include the Canadian Film Festival (February), the Festival of the Arts (September), Golden Spike Days (July), the Wearable Art Awards (yearly, next is May 9 & 10, 2009) and the CP Rail Holiday Train (December). Port Moody is also home to the Inlet Theatre, an intimate 200 seat venue.
Port Moody is home to Rocky Point Park. It includes 3.8 hectares of space, the park has hiking trails, a newly renovated spray park, a skate park, a bike trials park, a playground, a picnic shelter, a boat launch and a recreational pier. Home to Golden Spike Days, the park is a popular destination in the summer.
Bert Flinn Park encompasses 138 hectares of largely undeveloped parkland on former industrial lands. Popular with mountain bikers, and with an extensive unmarked trail system along old logging roadbeds, the park also has an off-leash dog walk.
Old Orchard Park is another popular destination in Port Moody. At about 1.4 hectares in size, it is directly across the inlet from Rocky Point Park and is the northern end of Shoreline Trail. It has a sandy beach, picnic shelter with BBQs and adventure playground in a quiet park setting. Old Orchard Hall is also located here and is a popular facility for weddings and other special events.
The old Ioco townsite also offers trails and grassy fields to residents and is especially popular with dog walkers.
Finishing construction in 2008, Port Moody has renovated its recreation complex. Home to an Olympic size ice rink, this new facility has an indoor running track, a state-of-the-art gym, a curling rink and an athlete’s lounge. The Port Moody Happening, a quarterly publication, features all recreation programs offered at this new facility.
The traditional phonetic rendering of Port Moody was roughly translated as "dilapidated graveyard" in Chinese. In 1998, the City of Port Moody adopted a new phonetic spelling of Port Moody in Chinese which translates as Land Full of Treasures.