Catalyzing untapped urban spaces under the bridge
Vancouver House is a collaboration between DIALOG and Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG). This neighbourhood-scaled project is comprised of four highly crafted buildings at the north end of the Granville Bridge. The project’s iconic tower dramatically unfolds from a mixed-use urban village under the bridge. This new neighbourhood is comprised of three intimately-scaled triangular buildings that provide spaces for working, shopping, and leisure. The tower gains its form in response to site constraints, shape shifting from a triangle at its base to a rectangle 500′ above the bridge. A central cathedral-like urban realm below the bridge offers ample opportunity for a variety of uses and public events.
- Vancouver, BC
- 700,000 sq ft
- Westbank Project Corp.
Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) – Design Architects
Glotman Simpson Consulting Engineers
ICON Pacific Construction Corp.
Nemetz & Associates
WSP Canada Inc.
BVDA Group Ltd.
- DIALOG Services
Planning & Urban Design
As space in Vancouver’s downtown core tightens, architectural responses on residual land assemblies will require heightened creativity.
The highly civic scheme evolves the local ‘Vancouverism’ typology of traditional tower and podium with a sculptural sentinel demarking an entire neighborhood below.
The building’s height and proximity to the creek means it is unique in the city. Views to both the water and the mountains grant visual access to the breadth of Vancouver’s natural surroundings.
The tower has a dynamic form – the base is triangular in response to site constraints, while the top is rectangular in response to maximizing upper level real-estate.
DIALOG’s early involvement led to a rezoning that ultimately afforded more density and height – both of which made immense contributions to the achievement of graceful form and a new community.
Suites in Vancouver House are markedly different over the course of the building, providing a unique experience for every tenant.
The new Beach District will activate an assembly of residual urban spaces under the Granville Bridge.
This weather-protected area will be energized by retail and restaurants and is designed to be an invigorating canvas for urban creativity.
Vance Harris, Principal Architect
There was something drawing me to this project. I had to try it, and I had to convince others that it was doable. For me, it’s been transformational. Absolutely transformational.
Negotiating a difficult site trisected by the Granville overpass and burdened by setbacks, the tower maximizes its mass where it has the most impact.
At its base, a 30m setback from the bridge dictates a triangular footprint on the ground. But as it ascends in elevation, the tower clears the zone of noise and visual chaos.
It then exploits the opportunity to overcome the setback and reclaims the valuable area. In doing so, it provides an icon for the city’s skyline and a generous public space at its base.
The buildings peak to rise over the bridge and transform a piece of the city’s infrastructure into one of the most prominent locations in Vancouver.