After the Games

September 2, 2008

The coveted blocks that constitute this pop-up village include subsidized units going for $375 per month and, down the street, penthouses selling for up to $10 million. Think of this walkable, urbane site as a distillation of Vancouver itself: young, experimental, and brazenly mixed. The macro-designed community (built to LEED Gold accreditation) gets plugged in for locals in the spring of 2010, once the jocks move on. Till then, you can daydream on the boardwalk.

SCHOOL'S IN If realtor Bob Rennie had his druthers, the elementary school would be moved to Science World, freeing this space up for more parkland. Either way, children from lower-income families will be educated alongside the mega-rich (excepting, of course, those shipped to private schools)

SANCTUARY On Habitat Island, three dead trees have been erected (perches for bald eagles) and marauding Canada geese have already staked a claim

151 & 181 ATHLETES WAY 60 of the community’s most prestigious homes were designed by the Arthur Erickson Architectural Corporation (with Nick Milkovich and Lawrence Doyle). Their oblique postures, along with the helical turns of the Ritz-Carlton and the Erickson snake-dancing across town, poke at the rigidity of towers

STREETCAR From the Canada Line Olympic Village Station a trolley service will run to Granville Island. If all goes according to plan, that trolley will continue with stops along First Avenue, one at Science World, and more along the skirts of Yaletown on the northern shore

SALT BUILDING Post-Olympic plans for this three-storey heritage building (likely constructed with first-growth Douglas Fir) combine a brew pub (rumoured to be run by Mark James), a coffee shop, and a bakery, making the red landmark a vital site once more

WATERFRONT If the seawall is Vancouver’s crowning achievement in urban design, then the stretch of boardwalk girding Southeast False Creek is its crown jewel. Lounge in park furniture reminiscent of Karim Rashid’s blobjects or stroll over a miniature crossing that puts London’s Millennium Bridge in mind

NOSH PIT Coal Harbour’s phalanx of towers made little sense before a luxe grocery store allowed residents to hit the olive bar on the walk home. Urban Fare’s inclusion at Millennium Water is a key component of the “village” idea


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