A Expo 86 icon was moved to Maple Ridge for restoration in 2015. Now the owner of the former floating McDonald’s restaurant says he has plans to reopen the barge as a seafood restaurant once a high traffic location is secured. (Matthew Claxton/Black Press Media)

A Expo 86 icon was moved to Maple Ridge for restoration in 2015. Now the owner of the former floating McDonald’s restaurant says he has plans to reopen the barge as a seafood restaurant once a high traffic location is secured. (Matthew Claxton/Black Press Media)

Expo 86 icon closer to finding permanent home, owner says

Howard Meakin plans to reopen barge as seafood restaurant

A famous barge in the Fraser River is closer to finding a permanent home.

The owner of the former “McBarge,” which served as a floating McDonald’s restaurant during Expo 86, says he is closing in on the sale of a site.

“The location that we have is going to site remediation with the Ministry of Environment and we’re waiting patiently for what they call a certificate of compliance, which is required before the sale can happen,” said Howard Meakin.

Until then he said he can’t disclose where the property is located.

“We’re kind of sitting on the fence right now for that to happen,” Meakin said.

Meakin has maintained ownership of the barge for 30 years and plans to reopen the 57-metre, two-storey glass-and-metal structure as a seafood restaurant.

READ MORE: Future of McBarge parked in Maple Ridge revealed

“There is certainly a lot of interest in the barge and they (the public) want to see it restored. They want to go aboard and remember the good old times,” he laughed.

The barge was used as a floating McDonald’s restaurant during the world’s fair, held on the shores of Vancouver’s False Creek in 1986.

Currently it is anchored in the Fraser River on a private water lot.

Meakin is hopeful the sale of the undisclosed property will move forward.

“We got really good response from them (the ministry) in terms of acceptance of our proposal,” he said.


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