October 14, 2014

Readers’ Choice Award Contest

We’re inviting readers to have their say on Development Design in Metro Vancouver

In celebration of the 42nd anniversary of the Urban Development Institute, The Vancouver Sun is honoured to present the Readers’ Choice Award at the upcoming 2014 UDI Awards Gala on Nov. 26.

We’re inviting readers to vote for their favourite highrise. The six projects featured for the Readers’ Choice contest are Aspac’s River Green in Richmond, Intracorp’s Metroplace in Burnaby, Concert Properties’ Salt, Cressey’s Maddox, Delta Land Corp.’s The Private Residences at Hotel Georgia and Onni Group’s The Mark, all in Metro Vancouver.

Cast your vote and you could WIN a fabulous weekend for two at the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel, including two nights of accommodation in a Gold Suite with private check-in and lounge, hotel car service, breakfast and evening canapés and dinner for two at ARC restaurant. A prize package valued at $2,500.

HOW TO VOTE: Take a look at the finalists on the following pages and then check out the videos and photo galleries for each development – and cast your vote – online at vancouversun.com/readerschoice

5111 Brighouse Way, Richmond


River Green has what many developers yearn for in a residential community – a sense of home with the atmosphere and all the amenities of a luxury resort.

Aspac Developments Ltd. and renowned architect James K.M. Cheng have created six highrise towers on the banks of the Fraser River in Richmond. Using innovative site design, the buildings are layered in profile to create unobstructed views of the North Shore mountains.

Each of River Green’s 458 residential units receives plenty of natural light, and there are sunlight-filled transition areas between buildings. Outdoor spaces showcase extensive illuminated water features that focus on the natural elements used, such as stone and wood. Borders of native plants formalize the waterscapes.

Amidst the magnificently manicured landscaping and flowing water gardens are nestled private patio spaces. Alternatively, open spaces display Aspac’s commissioned public art pieces created by local artists.

River Green residents live a 5-star resort lifestyle.  20,000 square feet of health and wellness facilities on site are complemented by access to the nearby Richmond Olympic Oval. There is an 80-foot indoor pool, whirlpool plus sauna, and steam rooms at River Green. For socializing, expansive party room, theatre, golf simulator, children’s play area, as well as music and study rooms are available for residents.

The sophisticated River Green residences are not only exceptionally well built but built with the environment in mind. LEED Silver equivalency elements such as hydronic heating and cooling, amongst other features, are an integral part of the River Green vision. Residents are encouraged to go ‘green’ by using the private shuttle service connecting to Canada Line.

Aspac’s visionary approach to what livability means in the urban context makes River Green a model of design for all of Richmond’s future developments.

6461Telford Avenue, Burnaby


Creating the highest and best use for a piece of property is a tall order for any developer. But many agree that Intracorp was more than up to the task when it completed the extraordinary 46-storey MetroPlace, located just 25 metres from the Metrotown SkyTrain station in Burnaby.

MetroPlace features 342 one-, two- and three-bedroom homes ranging from 471 square feet to a penthouse at 1,434 square feet. Intracorp was the first developer to create a building that is transforming the Maywood neighbourhood into a new town centre, with wide sidewalks, tree-lined streets, outdoor seating, street-front cafés and retail.

Intracorp created affordable homes in an urban centre that is transit-accessible and close to all amenities. It designed homes above where views are maximized in all directions, and constructed to meet LEED Silver standards. It met those goals and achieved others as well.

MetroPlace offers indoor and outdoor lounges with BBQ facilities for all residents to enjoy. Other amenities include a two-storey fitness centre that overlooks a Zen garden, and a playground for children.

Metroplace includes a 10,000-square-foot community contribution for non-profit organizations such as the YMCA and the BC Centre for Ability to the National Congress of Black Women. Intracorp also commissioned public art, created by B.C. artists Jacqueline Metz and Nancy Chew, which marks the beginning of the Beresford Artwalk.

Intracorp has been recognized for its effective digital media campaigns that included Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and blogging. It also maintained regular communication during construction with homeowners via quarterly newsletters, blogs and other social media interaction through to completion.

Located on one of the highest points in the region, and as one of the tallest buildings in Burnaby, it is fitting that atop MetroPlace is a glowing lantern, a beacon for a neighbourhood that can be seen from most places throughout Metro Vancouver .

1308 Hornby Street, Vancouver


Concert’s Salt development is revitalizing Vancouver’s Downtown South neighbourhood. Located on a compact building site of less than 12,000 square feet at the corner of Hornby and Drake streets, Salt was designed as a uniquely attainable home-ownership option in a market often dominated by cost-prohibitive luxury. It is a 31-storey highrise with 194 modern suites and 3,326 square feet of street-level commercial space. Of the 194 suites, most range from 475-square-foot one-bedrooms to 934-square-foot two-bedroom and den homes. Sub-penthouse and penthouse two-bedroom and den homes were also released.

Vancouver architects Bingham Hill and Richard Henry designed Salt to be tall and slender. Form elements, glazing proportions, stacked balconies, bay windows and relatively small floor plates reinforce this objective. The top flourish adds an attractive shadow-box element, distinguishing Salt in the ever-changing skyline.

Salt was designed to meet LEED Gold green building standards. Seventy-five per cent of construction waste was diverted from landfill and where feasible, building materials were selected for local availability and recycled content. Green roofs and landscaped amenity spaces utilize drought-tolerant, native species, reducing the heat island effect, storm water run-off and improving thermal efficiency.

Furthering the objective of a revitalized community, the second floor rooftop terrace was designed for relaxation and socializing; community garden space lets residents connect with nature and indulge their green thumbs.

In pre-sale, Salt offered 28 homes under $300,000 and 125 homes from $295,000 to $495,000 – appealing to first-time buyers wanting quality, value and a walkable downtown location. With all of the homes at Salt pre-sold in less than six months, Salt was the most successful downtown condominium offering of 2011, capturing the attention of discerning homeowners and investors.

667 Howe Street, Vancouver


Located on two land parcels at the corner of Georgia and Howe Street in downtown Vancouver, Delta Land Corp.’s mixed use development combines the fabulously refurbished Hotel Georgia with a 48-storey commercial and residential tower, marketed and sold as the Private Residences at the Hotel Georgia.

Designed and constructed to the highest standards of excellence, the sparkling glass tower includes 11 floors of commercial and 156 residential suites. The residential portion started construction in December 2008 and was completed in January 2013.

Although both the Private Residences and hotel are connected at Level 1 with common access points and Level 4 with shared amenities, both buildings maintain their individuality. Indeed, the sleek and modern tower tastefully complements the heritage hotel.

One of Delta Land Corp.’s objectives was to exceed mandated sustainability and environmental standards. Power Smart Building status was achieved for all aspects of the development, including the heritage hotel. A geothermal field below the underground parkade heats and cools both the hotel and the commercial component of the tower. A frameless curtain wall incorporates about 2,500 square feet of photovoltaic panels, which supplement power for lighting in common areas.

Further power savings were realized by installing LED lighting that utilizes a sophisticated control system to conserve energy. Combining amenities such as the swimming pool, fitness room and spa further reduced the development’s energy footprint. The saltwater swimming pool is also used in combination with the seismic rooftop water tanks as back up for the fire suppression system.

The development has garnered many awards in categories ranging from heritage restoration to hotel design, tower design, power saving and sustainability. The finished buildings successfully achieved the project’s ambitious goals.


1351 Continental Street, Vancouver


The secret to creating an elegant building like Cressey’s Maddox is to keep a restrained material palette and to provide variations in the detailing of the high-quality finishings to differentiate the various components of the building.

In the case of the 31-storey Maddox, situated in the Downtown South neighbourhood, the architects and builders used terracotta tile cladding, a lightweight material that provides a ventilated and insulated rainscreen system.

This high-quality cladding solution, available in a variety of colours, sizes and textures, assists in reducing heat loss and provides exceptional solar performance. The visual presence of concrete is minimized as glass becomes the dominant structural element, highlighting Maddox’s varying building elevation.

The exterior material fits in with the tactile interest and warmth generated by the masonry buildings in the neighbourhood, while enhancing the modernity projected in Maddox’s design. The colours used on the tower are salmon pink, natural red and dark red. Panels of different colours are organized in a spiral motif and terminating at the penthouse at the top of the tower. In contrast, the east upper half of the tower is simple, with clear glazing and spandrel panels (between the top of one window and the sill of the next floor’s windows) in a window wall.

Maddox offers a diverse mix of unit sizes –139 one-bedroom units, 71 two-bedroom units, and one three-bedroom unit – with a range of amenities. On the ground and second level of the two-storey podium are a spa, fitness area, change rooms and yoga room as well as two multi-function rooms. All residents have access to an outdoor amenities space on the seventh level in addition to the direct access most units have to private terraces and balconies.

Maddox is designed to LEED standards, with energy-efficient forced air heating and cooling technologies among the list of green and ecologically friendly features.

1372 Seymour Street, Vancouver


Simultaneously designing for beauty and sustainability is the demanding goal that Onni set for itself in creating The Mark, a 41-storey residential complex situated in Vancouver’s Yaletown district. When completed in October 2013, the 288-unit complex exceeded the LEED Gold standards required by Vancouver City Council policy.

A striking presence, wrapped in a curtain of glass, sunshades and a living wall, the project’s design maximizes the views from every angle, showing the panoramas of the city from English Bay to the North Shore mountains to best advantage.

Its adherence to sustainability involves both active and passive approaches. The active embraces high-efficiency heating and cooling and a rooftop solar panel that converts solar energy into usable energy and is used to heat hot water within the building. As well, rainwater is collected internally for irrigation. Passively, design elements include a single loaded corridor design of the podium with exterior walkways, permitting units to receive cross ventilation and natural light from both sides. Finally, the projections, deep balconies and horizontal shades reduce solar heat gains on the western side of the building while avoiding adversely affecting views.

More than an esthetic feature, the living wall helps to reduce overall temperatures and thereby energy consumption. Green roof plantings reduce paving and create a pleasing urban surface while cutting the environmental impact on the building’s mechanical systems.

The list of amenities is impressive and includes an outdoor pool, weight room, theatre, plus games and party rooms. Helping to meet the world’s most livable city’s social needs, The Mark provides a 37-space multi-level childcare facility with indoor and outdoor space as well as the new head office for the Vancouver Society of Children’s Centres, earning Onni Group the 2014 BC Child Care Award of Excellence.

The overall building was described by the Urban Design Panel as a “work of art.”



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