Mostly rentals in proposed downtown Vancouver towers with 1,100 homes (RENDERINGS)

Mar 28 2022, 11:08 pm

A previous proposal in downtown Vancouver’s West End for twin towers with primarily condominium uses has now largely pivoted to rental housing, along with a new design.

Bosa Properties and Kingswood Properties have submitted a new rezoning application for 1040-1080 Barclay Street (formerly 1070 Barclay Street) — the southeast corner of the intersection of Thurlow Street and Barclay Street.

Five years ago, the developers conceived a Jenga-like concept by Buro Ole Scheeren Architects, with two towers — reaching 449 ft with 48 storeys and 458 ft with 49 storeys — containing 680 homes, including 481 condominium homes and 162 social housing units.

But the condominium-primary proposal was one of several along the Thurlow Street corridor that stalled due to the softened market for condominiums, which are accompanied by a social housing requirement.

Cancelled 2018 condominium-primary design by Buro Ole Scheeren Architects:

1070-barclay-street-vancouver-bosa-properties-twin-towers-buro-ole-scheeren-1

Artistic rendering of Bosa Properties’ cancelled twin tower proposal at 1040-1080 Barclay Street in downtown Vancouver. (Buro Ole Scheeren Architects/Bosa Properties)

March 2022 rental housing-primary design by Perkins & Will:

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver rental towers

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

In late 2020, in an attempt to restart these proposals, Vancouver City Council approved a temporary policy of considering rezoning applications along the Thurlow Street corridor that provide 100% secured rental housing in which a minimum of 20% of the residential floor area is secured below-market rental housing.

“With our deep roots in Vancouver, we always want to be at the forefront of serving our community. There has been a dramatic shift in both the marketplace and consumer demand towards rental and outdoor community spaces, particularly over the past two years, and we wanted to be responsive and lead change,” said Nathaniel Funk, director, of development for Bosa Properties.

“We partnered with the City of Vancouver in a series of workshops to create an interim policy for the West End Community Plan to deliver purpose-built rental on this site, and in the process created more homes, affordable housing and an energetic community hub for this neighbourhood.”

Under the temporary policy, the developers in March 2022 submitted a revised design by architectural firm Perkins & Will that calls for added density through height — about 90 ft higher than the previous proposal.

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

The West Tower closest to the intersection is now 541 ft with 56 storeys, while the East Tower is 545 ft with 59 storeys. The taller heights intrude into the 341-ft height limit of View Cone 3.2 emanating from Queen Elizabeth Park, but height increases of up to 550 ft are permitted under the city’s General Policy for Higher Buildings, as the site is within the city’s Central Business District Shoulder area.

With the added height, both towers now carry a total of 1,100 homes combined, with 735 units or 67% designated as a form of rental housing tenure. This new figure is almost twice as many homes as the previous proposal.

These towers replace four ageing low-storey structures that contain a combined total of 117 rental units.

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

Site of the rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. Dark yellow represents proposed high-rise buildings, while light yellow represents existing high-rise buildings. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 barclay street vancouver

Site of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Google Earth)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

Site of the rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

Site of the rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

The mid-block East Tower is now 100% rental housing, with 636 units — a mix of 506 market rental units in the upper levels, and 130 below-market rental units in the lower levels.

The West Tower contains 464 homes, including 365 condominium units on the upper levels and 99 social housing units on the lower levels.

The below-market rental unit mix is 35 studios, 46 one-bedroom units, 39 two-bedroom units, and 10 three-bedroom units, while the market rental unit mix is 79 studios, 240 one-bedroom units, 176 two-bedroom units, and 11 three-bedroom units.

The condominium unit mix is 70 studios, 106 one-bedroom units, 150 two-bedroom units, 35 three-bedroom units, and four four-bedroom units, while the social housing unit mix is 13 studios, 33 one-bedroom units, 33 two-bedroom units, and 20 three-bedroom units.

Both towers are organized into boxy quadrants and are defined by balconies oriented towards the north and south. Each home includes a balcony.

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 uses in the towers for the redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

Various resident amenity spaces are distributed across the towers, including on the ground and penthouse levels of the East Tower, and a mid-tower level in the West Tower.

A City-owned childcare facility with a capacity for 37 kids is planned for the eighth level of the West Tower, with 5,069 sq ft of indoor space and 5,606 sq ft of outdoor space on the podium rooftop.

Restaurant and retail units totalling 4,300 sq ft on the ground level of the West Tower will front Thurlow Street, with the intention of drawing pedestrians from Robson Street. A cafe unit of 1,600 sq ft is also planned for the East Tower’s ground level, which will help activate an “urban park” between both towers — doubling as a mid-block pedestrian route.

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 ground-level plan for the redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

1040-1080 Barclay Street Vancouver Rental Housing

March 2022 artistic rendering of a rental housing-primary redevelopment of 1040-1080 Barclay Street, Vancouver. (Perkins & Will/Bosa Properties/Kingswood Properties)

Ten underground levels will contain over 800 vehicle parking stalls, and about 2,100 secured bike parking spaces.

Both towers combined will generate a total floor area of 946,400 sq ft, establishing a floor area ratio density of a floor area that is 21.9 times larger than the size of the 43,272-sq-ft lot.

In Spring 2021, under the same temporary city policies for the area, Bosa Properties’ Bosa4Rent Homes division submitted a revised rezoning application for 1065-1078 Harwood Street and 1332 Thurlow Street that called for 33-storey twin towers with 575 rental homes, instead of the previous concept primarily with condominiums.

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