Revised building plans near Commercial-Broadway Station call for 100% rental homes

May 19 2020, 3:33 pm

Almost exactly two years after the previous rezoning application was approved by Vancouver City Council, there is a new rezoning application for 1649 East Broadway — formerly known as 1619-1651 East Broadway — for a modest increase in height and the conversion to 100% rental homes.

This property is just half a block west of SkyTrain’s Commercial-Broadway Station, and across the street from the Rio Theatre.

Jameson Development Corporation’s new proposal calls for a 120-ft-tall, 12-storey building with 124 homes, including 91 secured market rental units and 23 below-market rental units. Contrast this with the previous plan for a 10-storey building with 93 homes, including 43 secured market rental units and 46 condominiums.

1649 East Broadway Vancouver

Site of 169 East Broadway, Vancouver. (IBI Group / Jameson Development Corporation)

1649 East Broadway Vancouver

Site of 1649 East Broadway, Vancouver. (Google Maps)

These modified uses are under the city’s 2019-enacted Below-Market Rental Housing Policy for Rezonings and the 2016-approved Grandview-Woodland Community Plan.

The rental unit mix for the new proposal is 12 studios, 60 one-bedroom units, 36 two-bedroom units, and six three-bedroom units. Tenants will have access to an indoor and outdoor amenity space on the seventh level.

1649 East Broadway Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 1649 East Broadway, Vancouver. (IBI Group / Jameson Development Corporation)

1649 East Broadway Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 1649 East Broadway, Vancouver. (IBI Group / Jameson Development Corporation)

The total floor area of the revised proposal is 78,594 sq ft, up from the previous plan of 63,000 sq ft. This represents a density increase from a floor space ratio (FSR) of four times the size of the 15,700-sq-ft lot to a total floor area that is now five times the lot size.

The amount of ground-level restaurant and retail space, activating the building’s East Broadway frontage near the transit hub, remains roughly the same at approximately 5,300 sq ft.

2018 approved rezoning:

1649 East Broadway Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 1649 East Broadway, Vancouver. (IBI Group / Jameson Development Corporation)

2020 revised rezoning proposal:

1619-1651 East Broadway Vancouver

Artistic rendering of the proposed redevelopment at 1619-1651 East Broadway, Vancouver. (IBI Group Architects)

“The south elevation facing East Broadway will have enclosed balconies arranged in a semi-random pattern of brick and glazing to create more interest in the façade… The colour of brick changes to a lighter tone and a more reduced grain on the upper levels to visually help with this concept,” reads the design rationale by architectural firm IBI Group.

“As the residential levels go up, the building setbacks increase at the east and west sides, creating roof decks that face away from the busiest street. The façades facing East Broadway will have enclosed balconies and solid walls which will help mitigate sound and contribute to the energy efficiency of the building.”

There will be a decrease in five vehicle parking stalls, bringing the total number of vehicle parking stalls to 70 across two underground levels. Instead, the parking stall reductions have made way for 217 bike parking spaces, nearly double the previous plan.