Fears of Shade Slice Job Space Off 31 Floor Vancouver Office Tower

1166 West Pender St
Never have we been so wrong or had our expectations let so far down at an open house. As Darren recently mentioned, we had high hopes for this event, so you can only imagine our horror when we arrived and found simple cookies and coffee, instead of the tasty treats the Marriott Pinnacle Hotel normally provides. While we’ve seen people turn against a proposal for something as trivial as this, we were a bit more reasonable.

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There was a touch of silliness in the room, which was likely due to staff suffering from severe boredom, as only 20 people had come through over a three hour period. This seemed to rub off on the public, as one person even joked they would support the demolition of the building, but only if Canadian Revenue Agency was still inside of the building when it happened.

There were some irrational fears expressed by the applicant too. When asked whether a light feature would be added to the building, the person I was speaking with balked. After having spent $400,000 on a city approved lighting feature at 1499 W Pender (West Pender Place), the neighbourhood rallied against it, which has apparently led to that the artwork being disabled. Still, Darren and I feel that a similar element would be more likely to be accepted in this area of the city’s office district, and could be a nice addition to the public realm. As Hariri Pontarini Architects have recently joined the project, maybe that view will change. However, given the strict city policies affecting this site, the building’s design will likely stay similar to the current proposal.

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That said, the people that attended the event appeared to support the proposal, as many remarked they would support an even taller building. Unfortunately, the building’s height is limited by a policy which bars any shadowing on city parks, even though a taller version of this project would appear to only shadow tree covered areas of Harbour Green Park. That policy has also resulted in the sculpting of the building and the terracing of the top floors, so it has helped create an interesting appearance.

The applicant hopes to provided a common rooftop amenity as well as private office patios on the terraced floors, but are unsure if these areas will have enough space to be viable. Sadly, the large number of parking stalls provided is the bare minimum required by the city. However, we did hear some desire expressed for less parking and more charging stations.

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While there appeared to be ample support for seeing that amount lowered, it is going to take a lot more than 20 people to see any sort of flexibility on that requirement, even with the site’s proximity to Waterfront Station. As an official application has yet to made, if you want to express your thoughts on that, or any other issue related to this proposal, you can email zoe@pottingerbird.com by June 22nd.

Lastly, if your partner promises to take you out to for dinner at a nice hotel for your anniversary, just make sure an open house isn’t also scheduled for that night. Still, at least the cookies were good.

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