Construction expected to begin this year on new major Vancouver office tower

Mar 26 2021, 12:14 pm

Local developer Reliance Properties is partnering with major international real estate and investment firm Hines to realize an upcoming office tower project in downtown Vancouver.

Both companies will jointly redevelop 1166 West Pender Street into a new 396-ft-tall, 32-storey office tower with 361,000 sq ft of AAA office space — enough space for approximately up to 3,000 workers.

The project’s rezoning was approved by Vancouver City Council in July 2019, and a development permit has been granted.

The property is currently occupied by a 1974-built, 12-storey building with 151,000 sq ft of office space, previously the longtime local office of Canada Revenue Agency.

This is the Houston-based firm’s first project in Vancouver, adding to its global portfolio, which includes 165 developments currently underway around the world. Hines has developed, redeveloped, or acquired 1,426 properties totalling 427 million sq ft in over 220 cities, and it manages 576 properties with 246 million sq ft. It already has a presence in Calgary, Edmonton, and Toronto.

1166 west pender street vancouver

July 2020 artistic rendering of 1166 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Hariri Pontarini Architects/Reliance Properties)

Construction on the 1166 West Pender office tower is expected to begin as early as Fall 2021, and it will be the most significant office construction start since the onset of COVID-19.

“We chose Vancouver for our latest Canadian project because we believe in its world-class economy and future, and this partnership was a natural fit because of Reliance Properties’ commendable track record and our shared values,” said Syl Apps, senior managing director for Hines, in a statement.

1166 west pender street vancouver

July 2020 artistic rendering of 1166 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Hariri Pontarini Architects/Reliance Properties)

Jon Stovell, the president and CEO of Reliance Properties, states this building will also carry the distinction of being the first post-pandemic office design in the city by prioritizing tenant health and experience. Through WELL, WiredScore, and LEED certifications, there will be touchless entry and elevator car, and touchless washroom fixtures, and each floor will have its own fresh air supply, with a high level of air filtration.

The entire third floor will be dedicated to common amenity spaces for office workers in the building, including an employee lounge and collaboration area, a modular conference space, a spa-quality fitness and wellness centre, and optimal cycling end-of-trip facilities.

There are a number of outdoor spaces in the tower, including terraces on the top nine floors.

1166 west pender street vancouver

July 2020 artistic rendering of 1166 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Hariri Pontarini Architects/Reliance Properties)

Despite the economic and workplace effects of the pandemic, demand for office space in Vancouver is still strong.

Vancouver’s vacancy rates are currently still considered within the healthy range, and they are the lowest amongst major North American centres. When it comes to commercial real estate activity in downtown, it has returned to 85% normal, although it is currently mainly small deals.

“The announcement of the partnership between Reliance and Hines is the most significant office activity since COVID-19 started, and it is a major boost in confidence,” said Blair Quinn, the vice chairman of CBRE.

1166 west pender street vancouver

July 2020 artistic rendering of 1166 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Hariri Pontarini Architects/Reliance Properties)

1166 west pender street vancouver

July 2020 artistic rendering of 1166 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Hariri Pontarini Architects/Reliance Properties)

1166 west pender street vancouver

Diagram of 1166 West Pender Street, Vancouver. (Hariri Pontarini Architects/Reliance Properties)

Kenneth ChanKenneth Chan

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