Following initial reports last week of the planned demolition and redevelopment of the architecturally-unique Villa Maris tower, also known as the Pink Palace, on West Vancouver’s waterfront, the longtime property of the Lachman family.
In a release, the proposed multi-phase project involves the redevelopment of two sites on the waterfront located within a city block’s distance from each other — the Pink Palace at 2222 Bellevue Avenue, and Shoreland Apartments at 2190 Bellevue Avenue.
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The 1964-built, 11-storey, 62-unit Shoreland Apartments will be replaced with a 21-storey building comprised of 206 rental homes, with the height consistent with those of adjacent buildings.
There would also be a low-rise, six-storey building in this first stage redevelopment, containing 24 affordable homes for West Vancouver families and residents who work for the district government, including first responders, and local teachers.
When the Shoreland Apartments redevelopment is complete, residents of the Pink Palace will be provided with the first right of refusal to relocate to the new units.
At the very earliest, the redevelopment of the 1966-built, 18-storey Pink Palace into a new “iconic” condominium building could begin in 2025.
Both redevelopments combined will create a net gain of 67 new rental homes, according to William Lachman, whose family has owned both buildings for over half a century.
While there is a certain vintage quality appreciation with both existing buildings, they require replacement due to seismic and end-of-lifespan maintenance reasons.
“We are in the initial stages of discussions with the community for a long-term plan which would see the buildings replaced with iconic, modern homes including a dramatic increase in rental suites, addressing a key West Vancouver priority,” Lachman said in a statement.
“From more affordable suites and bachelor suites to three-bedroom rentals and market condos, we want to create a diversity of housing choices to meet the needs of our community. The new buildings will also be pet friendly.”
Lachman notes there has been “overwhelmingly positive” feedback for the proposals from the tenants of both existing buildings.
“This project will make a big difference for West Vancouver by making it easier for workers such as first responders to be able to live here in the community that they serve,” said project partner Rob Macdonald of Macdonald Communities.
“We believe this workforce housing concept is a first for the North Shore and will likely become a model for other communities to follow.”
According to BC Assessment, the Pink Palace has an assessed value of $74.9 million, with $7.3 million from the value of the building and $67.6 million from the value of the land.
Shoreland Apartments, on its 0.7-acre lot, has an assessed value of $30.2 million, with $20.6 million from the land and $9.6 million from the building.