750 PACIFIC BOULEVARD PLAZA OF NATIONS

750 Pacific Boulevard, Plaza of Nations at False Creek North

James K.M. Cheng Architects Inc. has applied to the City of Vancouver to amend the existing CD-1 (Comprehensive Development) District By-law for 750 Pacific Boulevard. The proposed amendment would change the CD-1 (349) By-law to include residential (130 525 m²), commercial (32 515 m²),and community centre (5 338 m²) uses, with a Floor Space Ratio (FSR) of 3.9. The residential use will provide 1,700 to 2,000 dwelling units. The commercial use will provide retail, office, hotel, restaurants, and cafes. The community centre and associated uses include a daycare for 69 children, an ice rink, and sports science centre. All required parking will be below grade. The buildings will vary in height and be up to a maximum of 30-storeys (87.5 m) to meet view cones.

The Plaza of Nations is synonymous with the history and memories of Expo 86. However, the current Expo 86 site uses are no longer viable. This has been demonstrated by the demolition of structures and buildings on the site. Also, there have been functional conflicts with private site uses and the public False Creek seaside walkway and bike route running through the site. Overall, it is currently a highly underutilized and dysfunctional site.

Extensive discussions and workshops with the City concluded, in summary the following:
·  The Enterprise Centre should be demolished (confirmed by Council in October 2011)
·  A significant civic plaza for events should be achieved
·  The principle uses for the site should be mixed-use with residential, commercial, community and marine uses
·  Council approved view cones should be strictly adhered to
·  Major portions of the existing Expo 86 forest should be maintained

 

The proposed uses are primarily residential, commercial, community facilities, marine uses and public open space. These uses are consistent, and compatible, with the existing uses approved under the False Creek North Official Development Plan (FCN ODP) to the west, the proposed uses to the east, and the existing uses on the south side of False Creek of which the new Olympic Village is the principle example.

The proposed site density is approximately 3.9 FSR. This is well below the 5 FSR in Downtown South and to the recently rezoning submitted for Cambie Bridgehead at 5-7 FSR. Recent Council policies such as EcoDensity have also encouraged higher densities because it increases sustainability and reduces Vancouver’s carbon foot print. The public consultation process has expressed considerable support for the higher densities in recognition of the high level of community amenities proposed as well the sustainability features and meeting the LEED Gold standard

The major public benefits include, among others, the following:
·  Community Centre: the heart of the neighbourhood amenity facilities is the Community Centre which includes, among other things; day care centre for 69 children; community rooms; publically accessible ice hockey/skating rink that will be used by the community and as a training facility for the Canucks; and a sports science centre. In addition, all operating costs will be absorbed and indemnified by the applicant

·  False Creek Seaside Walkway and Bike Route: completion of the north side False Creek seaside walkway and bike route between Coopers Park Neighbourhood and the foot of the Georgia Street axis will be achieved. This adds 363m (1,190 ft) of finished seaside walkway and bike route to False Creek.

·  Civic Plaza: a major public outdoor event space is proposed on the water-front at the southerly apex of the site. This flexible space of approximately 4,500m (48,500 sf) will accommodate a wide range of audiences ranging from small gatherings up to 4,000 people. The event calendar will primarily be focused between spring and fall. It has the potential of accommodating a variety of neighbourly activities such as music, art shows, theatre presentations, and neighbourhood gatherings. The Civic Plaza replaces the original event space in the Plaza of Nations. This location gives uninterrupted southerly views to the water and maximizes sun access.

·  Public Open Space: in addition to the Civic Plaza there are a variety of public open spaces that includes: the existing Expo waterfront forest which will be maintained and enhanced; a substantial waterfront deck; the False Creek Seaside Walkway and Bike Route noted above; and landscape setbacks. In total there is some 6,600m (71,000 sf) of public open space.

·  Sustainability: The Plaza of Nations development will meet LEED Gold certification for both the site (LEED for Neighbourhood Development) and major buildings (LEED for New Construction). Features include, amongst others: connection to the Central Heat plant; achievement of significant reductions in water demand, and residential and commercial organic waste material; stormwater management that significantly reduces run-off from the site; and opportunities for urban agriculture.

·  Shoreline Sustainability: the Plaza of Nations has some 400m (1,300 ft) of shoreline which will consequentially change because of the new development. Shoreline habitat will be secured by, amongst other things, naturalized foreshore sections, extension of the length of seaside walk on piles, a new sub-tidal reef and subtidal and intertidal enhancements along the shoreline.

·  Marina: the new marina layout will provide public ferry dock with disability access and associated moorage for recreational water craft, accommodation of non-power craft moorage, short term moorage, a pump out facility and permanent moorage is maximized.

·  Jobs: the substantial commercial uses will provide extensive job opportunities. The 32,500 m2 (350,000 sf.) of commercial area and community centre will include a variety of job opportunities including, among others, office, service, retail, hotel and restaurant uses. The estimate for the number of jobs is 813 full time equivalents. These jobs and uses will assist in maintaining a good balance between jobs and number of residents in downtown Vancouver. The project will also create a very substantial number of job opportunities during the construction of the neighbourhood. The estimate for construction jobs is some 3,260 full time equivalents.

·  Housing: the 130,524 m2 (1,405,000 sf) of residential use represents some 1,700 to 2,000 new dwellings. These will range in size and affordability thereby accommodating a diverse population.

·  Community Support Uses: in addition to the Community Centre, the surrounding and new community will be supported by a wide range of on-site retail and service uses including a food store.

KEY PROJECT FEATURES
1.  Community Centre
2.  Daycare
3.  Ice rink
4.  Canucks facilities
5.  Sports medicine
6.  Expo forest
7.  1,500 to 2,000 residential units
8.  Retail at grade including restaurants and cafes
9.  Commercial
10.  Hotel
11.  Civic Plaza
12.  False Creek Seaside Walkway and Bike Route
13.  Public open space deck
14.  Public Ferry
15.  Transient moorage
16.  Non-motorized moorage
17.  Commercial moorage

SHORELINE FEATURES
18.  Naturalized foreshore in westerly bay
19.  Extension of length of seaside walk on piles
20.  Maintain easterly foreshore with seawalk on bridge
21.  Sub-tidal reef
22.  Subtidal and intertidal enhancements along shoreline

 

Contact Agnieszka Stryjecka for more detailed information on Vancouver Real Estate.

vancouver4life@gmail.com      TAC Real Estate Corp.      778.991.5881

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