Public comments on controversial 508 Helmcken tower (1111 Richards) due Dec 18, 2015 (Fri): 35 storeys proposed in Emery Barnes Park downtown

508Helmcken aerialCity staff are receiving public comments on the controversial tower proposed for 508 Helmcken by or on Friday, December 18, 2015. These comments will be considered for inclusion in a future staff report.

Comments can be sent to:
Lisa King, Project Facilitator,, 604.873.7642

Many details about the controversial tower project beside Emery Barnes Park can be found on the webpage for CANY (Community Association New Yaletown).

A Development Permit Board hearing has been set for February 9, 2016 to review the proposal. Members of the public will have an opportunity to speak for up 5 minutes and address the panel.

The proposed development has the following specifications:
• Total height of 320 feet or 97.5 metres (built to height of Choklit Park view cone)
35 storeys
Floor space ratio (FSR) of 16.68
• 388 residential units, 278 market condos, 110 market rentals (level 11 and up)
• Of the residential floor area, 72.7% is for market condos while 27.3% is for market rental
• Total floor area for condos: 211,360 square feet (19,636 sqm) vs. market rental: 79,495 SF (7,385 sqm)
• 236 parking stalls in 6 underground levels
• Private pre-school (partially at grade and level 2)

It’s worth noting that this building density is over four times the normal limits in the New Yaletown neighbourhood. The predominantly residential building is proposed to contain condo and rental units, but no true social housing. However, it will be classified as “100% social housing” due to the revised definition in the updated Downtown Official Development Plan. There are many concerns that this proposed tower would be too large and dense for the property. The site is adjacent to Emery Barnes Park and the Park Board originally had plans to acquire this land to expand the park to cover the whole block.

Further details on the design can be found on the following Development Application webpage of the City of Vancouver:
1111 Richards Street (formerly 508 Helmcken Street) – DE419710

508 Helmcken508 Helmcken and Emery Barnes Park


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