A new tower proposal with the striking appearance of boxes resting on top of the other could rise from the northwest corner of West 2nd Avenue and Ontario Street in Vancouver’s Southeast False Creek neighbourhood, just south of the Olympic Village.

Point Grey Developments and MA+HG Architects have submitted a rezoning application to redevelop 5 West 2nd Avenue into a 181-ft-tall, 18-storey, mixed-use tower.

The property is currently occupied by a 1941-built, two-storey building, tenanted to Big City’s Auto Body.

The proposal calls for 122 secured purpose-built market rental homes, with 20% of the total residential space in the building offered to moderate income households.

Site of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (Google Maps)

Current condition:

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Site of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (Google Maps)

Future condition:

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

The residential unit mix is 21 studios, 57 one-bedroom units, 36 two-bedroom units, and eight three-bedroom units.

Residents will have access to over 2,100 sq. ft. of indoor amenity space, spread over various spaces in the second, eighth, and 14th levels. Minor outdoor amenity spaces are attached to several indoor amenity spaces, and the entire tower rooftop is dedicated as a landscaped outdoor amenity space with lounge and picnic areas, an outdoor kitchen, and urban agriculture plots.

The tower’s massing shape is cut into four vertical sections, with each mass horizontally shifted or carved, resulting in multi-roof terraces that can be used for both shared outdoor amenity spaces and private unit patios.

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Massing of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

The architectural concept is inspired by the area’s industrial past to the extent that the tower is described as “a collection of industrial block buildings, modernized to form a collection of stacked brick residential massings.”

“This robust character is conceived both in form and materiality — it harkens to both an industrial past, and celebrates a more robust future,” reads the design rationale.

There is also a simplicity to the design, offered by the shape and pattern of its punctured windows. Additionally, the use of varying pastel colours creates a playful break in the evolving 2nd Avenue streetscape, where the tallest towers in Southeast False Creek can be found.

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

On the ground level, activating the street frontages, there will be just under 5,000 sq. ft. of retail and restaurant space.

Three underground levels will accommodate 53 vehicle parking stalls and 232 bike parking spaces.

The proposed total floor area is 94,006 sq. ft., creating a floor space ratio density of 7.77 times the size of the 12,100 sq. ft. lot.

Last fall, Vancouver City Council approved the possibility for building heights up to 153 ft on the entire south side of 2nd Avenue between Yukon Street and Quebec Street. While it mirrors the building heights rising on the north side of the street, no residential space is allowed; only light industrial and office developments are permitted on the south side of the street, which falls under the Mount Pleasant Industrial Area policy.

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

Artistic rendering of 5 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

5 West 2nd Avenue Vancouver

5 West 2nd Avenue, compared with adjacent buildings on the streetscape. (MA+HG Architects/Point Grey Developments)

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