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Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > Canada > Alberta & British Columbia > SSP: Local Vancouver > Downtown & City of Vancouver

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  #4581  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2014, 10:16 PM
officedweller officedweller is offline
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Originally Posted by officedweller View Post
A pic of the model of this project from Changing City Updates:

http://changingcitybook.com/2014/11/20/4th-and-main/


http://changingcitybook.com/2014/11/20/4th-and-main/
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  #4582  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 7:18 PM
BodomReaper BodomReaper is offline
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Very frustrating - for how much longer are we going to keep wasting sites at the intersection of key arterials with densities found on Port Coquitlam side streets? No reason why an intersection like Main and 4th can't handle an Olympic Village-style 10 floor midrise without overwhelming the surroundings.
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  #4583  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 7:23 PM
vanciti vanciti is offline
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Originally Posted by BodomReaper View Post
Very frustrating - for how much longer are we going to keep wasting sites at the intersection of key arterials with densities found on Port Coquitlam side streets? No reason why an intersection like Main and 4th can't handle an Olympic Village-style 10 floor midrise without overwhelming the surroundings.
At a 3 FSR the site has almost the same density as Olympic Village. The biggest problem we have in this city, is we rely so heavily on FSR as the end all be all to determining density on a site. FSR is such a crude tool to measure what is appropriate or can go on a site. An example, I was recently looking at a property that has a 5 FSR, but a height limit of 75 feet in the downtown core. Or another property that has a 7 FSR and a height of 299 feet...We need to start looking at density in growth with tools that do not involve FSR and more involve heights, fit, finish and design. Otherwise Vancouver will continued to be littered with 4 and 5 story buildings that are better suited for the Burbs.
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  #4584  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 7:51 PM
BodomReaper BodomReaper is offline
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Originally Posted by vanciti View Post
At a 3 FSR the site has almost the same density as Olympic Village. The biggest problem we have in this city, is we rely so heavily on FSR as the end all be all to determining density on a site. FSR is such a crude tool to measure what is appropriate or can go on a site. An example, I was recently looking at a property that has a 5 FSR, but a height limit of 75 feet in the downtown core. Or another property that has a 7 FSR and a height of 299 feet...We need to start looking at density in growth with tools that do not involve FSR and more involve heights, fit, finish and design. Otherwise Vancouver will continued to be littered with 4 and 5 story buildings that are better suited for the Burbs.
This is exactly one of the thesis ideas I'm kicking around for grad school (though it might have been done already) - designing a regulatory framework that regulates the negative externalities of density rather than density itself. Unless one prescribes to the anti-urban view that population itself is a negative needing to be controlled, I see no reason to impose FSR caps when setbacks, shadowing, parking etc. can all be held to appropriate standards directly and quantitatively.
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  #4585  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 8:44 PM
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^ That's effectively a form-based code and it has a whole lot of positive advantages to it.

Regarding the proposed building at Main and 4th, it's Main and 2nd that's the main intersection. I think a handsome 5 storey building will do just fine there, especially when one considers the slope of the hill.
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  #4586  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 8:55 PM
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Even with the useless generic retail at street level, it'll be nice to see the gap between mt pleasant and the dtes developed. I don't recall the mt pleasant ocp mentioning allowable density for main st but I thought there was at least 6 stories allowed which could accomodate a bit more density than 3 fsr. Imo for this location 5 fsr is more appropriate.
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  #4587  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 9:53 PM
vanciti vanciti is offline
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Originally Posted by logan5 View Post
Even with the useless generic retail at street level, it'll be nice to see the gap between mt pleasant and the dtes developed. I don't recall the mt pleasant ocp mentioning allowable density for main st but I thought there was at least 6 stories allowed which could accomodate a bit more density than 3 fsr. Imo for this location 5 fsr is more appropriate.
There are blocks in lower main that do allow a 5 FSR. Again, if you do it right FSR is a moot point. There is a common complaint about lack of design etc in this city. How do you expect to design anything that is short, squat and fat built right to the property lines. Allow heights, setbacks, design principals, you'll get a pretty nifty looking city.
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  #4588  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2014, 10:45 PM
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logan5 logan5 is offline
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Originally Posted by vanciti View Post
There are blocks in lower main that do allow a 5 FSR. Again, if you do it right FSR is a moot point. There is a common complaint about lack of design etc in this city. How do you expect to design anything that is short, squat and fat built right to the property lines. Allow heights, setbacks, design principals, you'll get a pretty nifty looking city.
I suppose you are right. Height works in conjunction with density but for larger projects I think you need an fsr. Anyways I lile knowing how much sq footage each development is allowed.
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  #4589  
Old Posted Nov 24, 2014, 4:26 PM
vanciti vanciti is offline
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I suppose you are right. Height works in conjunction with density but for larger projects I think you need an fsr. Anyways I lile knowing how much sq footage each development is allowed.
How do you figure? Olympic Village is a larger project where FSR stifled what could have been more. We have a table top of buildings over the entire site because FSR stifled. If the heights had been up and down, with setbacks I think we would have had a better village.

Don't get me wrong, I think Olympic Village is fantastic, I just think we lost opportunity because of the FSR number.

A downtown building with a height allowance of 299' (with conditional height to 499') but an FSR of 7. When a developer goes to rezone it, the public lose their cheerios over the FSR being 20, but at 20 the proposed tower barely hits the allowable height limit. When the public loses their cheerios it makes the rezoning process longer, which costs a developer more money, which in turn can either sink projects or causes the price of the end units/rent rates to go up.

I maintain FSR is the devil when it comes to building height and getting away from the table top concept that is so often discussed on this forum.
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  #4590  
Old Posted Nov 24, 2014, 7:49 PM
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Vanelevatorman Vanelevatorman is offline
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Off topic I know but I like the "lose their cheerios" lol
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  #4591  
Old Posted Nov 24, 2014, 8:07 PM
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Ideally, if the City of Vancouver really wants to go green, then downtown, West Broadway/Cambie/north Main corridors, Olympic Village should go really tall, like 40-80 stories tall, not a wall or table-topped bunch of buildings of course, but with setbacks and distance between the towers. These towers would be built on grand podiums with hanging gardens and plenty of sun spots, offering services from retail spaces to restaurants. Along the major roads criss-crossing these towers would be trams and underground trains that serve the masses.

Also ideally, people and businesses would be rehoused in these structures from low density areas and these properties repurchased by the state/city and converted to green lungs/parklands/agricultural lands. Vancouver can become a city with nodes of really tall towers but surrounded by lots of green space. I think certain neighbourhoods of Burnaby are quite successful in meeting this ideal, like the Edmonds neighbourhood, but being planned as only residential, lack the kind of city buzz and convenience one would like to see.

The current FSR or other viewcone requirements of Vancouver will never ever make this city green or alleviate housing shortage problems. The city would only succeed in a sprawl, except that instead of having single housing neighbourhoods, it would be filled with 5-storeyed wooden shacks that age badly throughout the suburbs. And in 20 years' time, those shacks will look exactly like the neighbourhood immediately south of Metrotown station, or many parts of ugly West End.
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  #4592  
Old Posted Yesterday, 8:13 AM
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does anyone else find the streets of olympic village kind of enclosed? when i have walked around there the buildings seemed close to me. i don't know, it just didn't feel very open to me.
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  #4593  
Old Posted Yesterday, 9:46 AM
officedweller officedweller is offline
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Yeah, it's a bit claustrophobic on some of the east-west streets that are about the width of lanes.
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  #4594  
Old Posted Yesterday, 9:37 PM
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Originally Posted by VancouverOfTheFuture View Post
does anyone else find the streets of olympic village kind of enclosed? when i have walked around there the buildings seemed close to me. i don't know, it just didn't feel very open to me.
I love that feeling. It happens often in Europe and feels very urban.
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  #4595  
Old Posted Today, 12:22 AM
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Same I like that feeling a lot!! I want to see more of that and less point towers with big set backs
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  #4596  
Old Posted Today, 3:50 AM
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