There was a unanimous decision by Vancouver City Council on Tuesday evening to approve the rezoning application for a new 12-storey office tower at the southeast corner of the intersection of East Broadway and Ontario Street.
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There will be nearly 1o4,000 sq. ft. of office space within the upper levels, with smaller office plates suitable for smaller businesses, and close to 20,000 sq. ft. of retail and restaurant space within the lower and basement levels, creating employment space for about 450 jobs.
Space will be set aside for a Mobi bike share station on the Ontario Street side of the property, next to a new corner plaza, providing convenient access to this north-south bicycle route and the 10th Avenue bikeway just to the south.
Value Property Group is the developer, and Formosis Architecture is the design firm. The architectural concept is a massing of three blocks.
“I do think there is some work to do on the building, on the accessibility with the bike ramp as well as ensuring that the building fits more with the neighbourhood’s character,” said Green Party councillor Michael Wiebe.
“I know work is ongoing, and I just look forward to seeing how this building comes together, recognizing it’s great to see job growth and the proponent wanting to own and continue to have this building in the future and becoming a part of the neighbourhood.”
Outdoor amenity spaces are planned for various office levels. Workers will also have access to a 4,260-sq-ft indoor amenity space on the eighth level with a fitness gym, yoga room, end-of-trip facilities, and multi-purpose spaces, as well as a common outdoor amenity deck.
Seven underground levels will provide 230 vehicle parking stalls and 68 bike parking spaces.
The total floor area is about 125,000 sq. ft. for a floor space ratio density of almost eight times the size of the 16,100-sq-ft lot. The site is currently occupied by a 1959-built, three-storey commercial building, and a 1910-built, three-storey house. Both properties were sold in January 2017 for a combined value of $19.3 million.
The redevelopment maximizes its allowable height, reaching the ceiling of 148 ft — a constraint of View Cone 3 from Queen Elizabeth Park.
In exchange for the rezoning approval, the proponent is required to provide $3.5 million in public benefits, including $2.47 million for development cost levies, $635,000 for community amenity contribution, and $239,000 for public art.
Construction is estimated to generate about 520 off-site and on-site jobs.