December 10, 2012

Block 100 rises in evolving southeast False Creek

Street smarts Onni’s Block 100 will be steps from restaurants, public transit and the Vancouver waterfront

Special to The Sun

Block 100, a new development in the 100 block of East 1st Avenue, offers home shoppers a chance to buy in Vancouver’s expanding southeast False Creek neighbourhood. “It’s an up-and-coming community,” says Nick Belmar, Onni’s vice-president of sales of the project between Quebec and Main streets. “You get in early and you reap the benefits of having adopted an area.”

Block 100 will be minutes away from the waterfront, good restaurants, coffee shops, an Urban Fare and public transit. “You are just 45 seconds away from the seawall,” adds Belmar, pointing to a scale model of the building in Onni’s sales centre on Quebec Street. “It’s a huge amenity.”

The 231-unit development includes three different buildings — one 15 storeys, one five storeys and one 10 storeys — connected through Block 100’s contemporary design from Chris Dikeakos Architects Inc. It also includes close to 3,000 square feet of ground level retail space on Main Street.

Homes range from 465 square feet to 1,265 square feet, and start at $268,900. Belmar says the wide range of homes means they will appeal to a diverse mix of buyers. The site’s history and location helped to inform Block 100’s design, says architect Dikeakos. “The historical references of a site can act as a springboard to inspire a design concept that engages the urban fabric and enhances the public realm,” he says.

“For this site, the historic use of the railway that once passed through the site was a factor that drove the design evolution.” The sales kit notes that every aspect of the design was explored and considered. “A thoughtful mix of building materials were chosen to create a dynamic blend of texture, modernity and history,” it says.

The result combines elements like exposed board form concrete, resembling a classic timber construction style, with metal sun shades and blue glass accents. Details like a railway grid design on the sidewalk are a nod to the site’s past, Belmar says, while the blue glass references its proximity to the nearby ocean. The sales kits also includes a large map that highlights the many nearby amenities.

“Life at your doorstep,” it says, noting that residents will be able to walk to a Canucks game at Rogers Arena, or discover the boutiques and restaurants on Main Street. “Block 100’s proximity to the waterfront also means you can develop a healthy, active lifestyle close to home,” it says. “Easy access to parks, green space and the Central Valley Greenway provides a natural setting for walking, jogging, cycling and more.”

Each home has a patio. There are also shared rooftop decks and a solarium, from which residents will be able to enjoy the views. There’s also a walkway running along the north side of the development, opening to a courtyard. Residents will also have access to about 4,960 square feet of indoor and outdoor amenity space, including a bicycle wash station and workshop for tune-ups, a multi-purpose room, a media room, and a fully-equipped fitness studio.

The building will have a 16-hour concierge service and evening security, electronic key-fob controlled access at all building entry points, and controlled underground parking with a secured entry gate, good lighting and a closed circuit camera. It will also have sprinklers and smoke detectors in every suite. Inside, homes are bright and inviting. This is presented well in Block 100’s display suite, including an open-looking kitchen and sleek bathroom.

There’s European made commercial-grade wide-plank laminate flooring in the living, entry and kitchen space, with an option to upgrade to hardwood flooring. Bathrooms have wood veneer cabinetry and brushed chrome door hardware. An oversized white gloss medicine cabinet and under-mounted wash basin, with a WaterSense certified chrome faucet, combine attractive design with function.

The frameless glass shower enclosure has a mosaic-tiled base, with high gloss tile to the ceiling. It will also save energy, thanks to its WaterSense certified tri-function Kohler shower head, with pressure balanced shower controls. There’s also a handy built-in niche in the shower to help minimize clutter. The kitchen mimics the contemporary feel of the bathroom, with flat-panel wood cabinetry and composite stone kitchen countertops, and a luxury stainless appliance package.

The stainless zero-radius undercount sink is topped with a polished chrome Kohler kitchen faucet with extractable sprayer, and everything is nicely lit with pot lighting and under-cabinet puck lighting. A convenient, flip-out drawer just below the kitchen sink is hidden away, perfect for housing a scrub brush. The backsplash behind the sink is its own cabinet — great for keeping things neat and off the counter.

“People are having to fit a lot of items into their homes,” says Belmar, standing inside the display kitchen. “Instead of having things on your counter you can tuck them away.” These smart design details get noticed by buyers. “The reaction’s been great,” says Belmar. “It’s the little details that will set you apart from the competition.” And being a few steps from the ocean doesn’t hurt either.

Block 100

Address: 1695 Main Street, Vancouver
Project size: 231 homes in three buildings: Quebec Block – 15 storeys; Centre Block – 5 storeys; Main Block 10 storeys
Residence size: 465 – 1,265 sq. ft.
Retail size: 2,935 sq. ft.
Prices: From $268,900
Developer: Onni Group
Marketing: Onni Group
Architect: Chris Dikeakos Architects Inc.
Interior design: Onni Group
Sales centre location: 1618 Quebec Street
Hours: noon — 6 p.m., Sat — Thurs
Telephone: 604-682-8801
Email: block100 Late 2015/Early 2016
On sale date: Now previewing

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