Restaurant coming to former BMO pavilion at renovated downtown plaza (PHOTOS)

May 19 2020, 7:36 pm

Construction is nearing completion on the renovated privately-owned public plaza at the northwest corner of the intersection of West Georgia Street and Homer Street in downtown Vancouver.

This is all part of Oxford Properties’ tenant improvement project for its office complex at 401 West Georgia Street, ahead of the completion of the new nine-storey office building at the northern end of the city block at 402 Dunsmuir Street, which is fully leased to Amazon.

The extensively rebuilt plaza now has an open feel after some of its old design elements were removed, specifically the arch and columns that straddled over the space’s southern perimeter, facing West Georgia Street.

Before:

401 west georgia street vancouver

Previous condition in 2018 of 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver. (Google Maps)

After:

401 West Georgia Street Vancouver

Construction progress at 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

But the former BMO pavilion and the breezeway have been retained and renovated, with the pavilion set to become the new location of Water + Flour Restaurant, which currently has a location just two blocks south at Per Se Social Corner.

The new restaurant at 425 West Georgia Street will have an indoor floor area of about 7,000 sq. ft., and an on-plaza patio area of about 3,000 sq. ft.

401 West Georgia Street Vancouver

Construction progress at 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

401 West Georgia Street Vancouver

Construction progress at 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

At the other end of the city block, exterior work on the new Amazon office building is now complete, with crews now focusing on outfitting the interior workspaces.

The building’s completion and opening is expected this summer, but given the current health safety challenges it is not immediately clear when exactly Amazon employees will start using the space. Amazon previously announced this office building will employ 1,000 employees.

402 dunsmuir street vancouver

Construction progress at 402 Dunsmuir Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

402 dunsmuir street vancouver

Construction progress at 402 Dunsmuir Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

The existing office complex’s public spaces have been renovated to create a unified public realm that is integrated and consistent with the newly-built public spaces of the Amazon building. B+H Architects is the architect behind both the new building and the public realm renovations.

The 1984-built office building on the site consists of 260,000 sq. ft. of floor area. With the completion of the new office building addition, the complex’s total floor area is now approximately 410,000 sq. ft.

401 West Georgia Street Vancouver

Construction progress at 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

401 West Georgia Street Vancouver

Construction progress at 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, as of May 18, 2020. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

Immediately to the east, work continues to progress on QuadReal Property Group’s The Post — the redevelopment of the old Canada Post building into 1.13 million sq. ft. of office space for Amazon, and 485,000 sq. ft. of retail and restaurant space in the lower levels, including a 50,000-sq-ft flagship Loblaws supermarket.

This single repurposed building is expected to employ as many as 10,000 people when it reaches full completion in 2023.

And just to the south, the lower half of the stacked cube forms of Westbank’s Deloitte Summit have taken shape, with the first glass panels recently installed.

The 24-storey tower consists of 370,000 sq. ft. of floor area, including 117,000 sq. ft. leased to Deloitte, 60,000 sq. ft. to Apple, and 120,000 sq. ft. to Spaces co-working, which has been subleased to Amazon on a temporary basis. Northeastern University is also occupying an unspecified but significant amount of space. All three new buildings, along with Amazon’s original office within TELUS Garden, will create a new major global hub for the company in the city.

401 West Georgia Street Vancouver

Artistic rendering of the upgraded plaza at 401 West Georgia Street, Vancouver. (Oxford Properties)