Yesterday Vancouver council voted in favour of increasing density along the entire Cambie Corridor. The plan calls for buildings up to 12 storeys, with even higher buildings around Oakridge Centre and Marine/Cambie area. An additional 15,000 to 20,000 people will live along the corridor once development is complete (around 20 years or so). Further, office space is as part of the plan and at least 20% of the larger developments will be earmarked for social housing.
This is a great first step for the city of Vancouver as it starts to embrace density outside Downtown and Uptown neighbourhoods. Now it’s time that the residents of Vancouver embrace it as well. As expected the decision yesterday was met with the usual “won’t somebody please think of the children” response from many area residents. The concept of change must be foreign to them, boy are they in for a rude awakening. As real estate prices remain high in Vancouver, increased density is the option. Sure real estate prices might dip, but as soon as they do people from all over the world start pouring their money into our housing.
This decision should have been made a long time ago, or at the very least once the Canada Line was approved. However, just like anything, council first had to convince the naive residents in the area that arrival of rapid transit in their neighbourhoods will not mean more density. Fast forward five years or so and council has done what needs to be done.
Change isn’t easy, I understand that. However, people need to come to the realization that the future of Vancouver will bring more high density neigbourhoods outside the downtown core. It’s starting to happen in East Vancouver and now it’s coming to the west and south side.
The next 20 years we’ll see a lot more growth outside the core.