An active citizen in Vancouver, Silva Bolds-Whitfield tirelessly supported trees within the community of Vancouver. Working with community leaders to replant downtown Vancouver after the Columbus Day Storm of 1962, Silva launched one of the most effective campaigns to bring trees back into the city. Her efforts helped to rebuild Vancouver's urban forest.
Until her death in 1988, Silva worked tirelessly for the beautification of Vancouver. Trees, nature and gardens were a huge part of her focus as a master gardener and Vancouver Planning Commissioner. In 1965 she formed the Landscape Commission appointed by the City Council (now known as the Urban Forestry Commission), and worked to strike a balance between planting and maintaining trees.
In wanting to honor Silva Bolds-Whitfield, the Urban Forestry Commission asked the Bolds Family in 1995 to help raise funds to create a water feature. Donations from the community enabled the Urban Forestry Commission to hire sculptor Brian Goldbloom.
Silva believed that public art should be people friendly and blend with the surrounding area, not be imposed into a community. Brian Goldbloom was able to create a water feature that harmonized with the natural surroundings.
The surface of the rugged stone was chiseled away to reveal artistic urban architecture and buds of new growth. Water flows from the basalt column through divided channels suggesting branches and roots that journey to the living tree. The circle of bricks radiating from the tree represents the gift of oxygen that nature provides to mankind. There is a stone rising up out of the ground, which is a place to add the names of people in the community who have shown vision in developing the urban forest.
Honoring a woman who loved and advocated the Pacific Northwest landscape, the Silva Bolds Award is given to individuals for their exceptional contribution to the urban forest and the community.
The Plaza is a living gift to our community to honor those with a vision. The Urban Forestry Plaza is located at 13th and Main streets, downtown Vancouver.
Columbia Vista Corporation
Edward (Buzz), Roxie, Lori & Silva (Dicie) Bolds
Silver Eagle Industries & The Gaussoin Family
Adolf & Gabriella Hertrich
Ed & Dollie Lynch
Bob & Joanne Kendall
Northwest National Bank
Carolyn Silva Chambers
Christensen Shipyards Limited
Dick & Mary Cranger
Law Offices of Morse & Bratt
Realvest Companies Charitable Fund
Margaret Susan Bolds
First Independent Bank
Susan Courtney & Dean Irvin