Hollyburn Properties has proposed a boost to the rental accommodations of Vancouver's West End in the form of a 42-storey tower with a four-storey podium, to be located at 1640-1650 Alberni Street. A rezoning application for the development was submitted in fall 2016, with an open house on November 21 and a meeting with the Urban Design Panel on November 30 emitting additional details about the project.

The building would have 42 storeys, image via Francl Architecture

The 276-unit project would replace an aging residential and office building currently on the site. If approved and built, it would represent an increase of 211 units of housing, 104 of which will be family oriented. Broken down as 89 two-bedroom and 15 three-bedroom units, family-oriented floor plans constitute 37 percent of the development's total housing mix. 

The existing mixed-use building on the site, image by Forum contributor Roundabout

The proposal responds to pertinent planning policies, most notably the 2013-approved West End Community Plan, which provides guidelines for development in the area. Cognizant of the guidelines for the Georgia corridor, the project's podium rises to a pedestrian-friendly four storeys, allowing daylight to reach the sidewalk and Alberni Street. Along with the proposed 117-metre height, the tower's floor plate adheres to the 5,500-square-foot stipulated maximum for Area 'A.' Two at-grade residential units with associated patio space would front Alberni Street at approximately the same setback as the existing building.

1450-1460 Alberni would employ an expression of undulating balconies, image via Francl Architecture

The built form and massing has been shaped to minimize shadows and maximize separation between existing towers and potential future towers on neighbouring lots. Views in all directions — the mountains to the north, Stanley Park to the west, the West End to the south, and downtown to the east — will be afforded by windowed corner suites. Designed by Francl Architecture, the building's curving envelope is formed by its balconies, which are placed along its corners. In contrast with the heavy glazing of the opposing elevations, the east and west facades have a more opaque architectural expression. These orientations minimize privacy concerns with neighbouring buildings while taking advantage of the opportunity for panoramic views. 

A rendering of the proposed development, image via Francl Architecture

Residents will find amenities spread across three different levels, with the requisite fitness centre situated on the main floor next to landscaped common areas. The fifth level kitchen and games room would be connected with a terrace atop the podium with play space and garden plots. The tower's pinnacle would also host a unique sky lounge with exterior decks providing engaging vistas. 

An isometric view of the proposed development, image via Francl Architecture

The development is currently in the review stage, where it is receiving consideration from staff, the public, and advisory groups. After the rezoning application is evaluated, it will either be approved with conditions or refused, where it could be referred to a public hearing for further consideration. Additional images and information can be found in the Database file linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion or share your photos? Check out the associated Forum thread or leave a comment at the bottom of this page.

Related Companies:  Francl Architecture, Hollyburn Properties