Bridgehead tower carves out space for living and studios for local artists
Hedged in by the Granville Street Bridge and the Fir Street off-ramp, the West 6th and Fir site proved challenging for previous development attempts by others. The solution was born from a practical insight that allowed City of Vancouver Planning to reverse its previously conservative view for bridgehead sites. The traffic on the offramp flows south of downtown, thus not blocking any view to the mountains, which was a goal of the Bridgehead Guidelines. The tower’s curvilinear silhouette and elliptical form is sculpted to create dynamic residences that afford sweeping views of Burrard Inlet, while integrating the building into the urban fabric of Vancouver’s Burrard Slopes. The resulting form preserves the views and maximizes access to natural light for neighbours in lower rise buildings.
The 15-storey development comprises 50 boutique condominium suites as well as street level retail. A series of skyboxes – consisting of two, three and five-storey sculptural rectangular forms – give the LEED Silver tower a distinct identity. The skyboxes also break down the building’s mass, orient views, and limit sight lines to and from the bridge off-ramp. Community Amenity Contributions allowed for the creation of a neighbourhood park and the incorporation of two studios owned by the City of Vancouver that are leased to emerging artists at below-market rates.