More than 3,000 new Vancouver homes envisioned in draft plan for False Creek Flats industrial area

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      Housing opportunities are built into the draft plan by the City of Vancouver for the future of False Creek Flats.

      Under the plan released by the city Wednesday (January 25), more than 3,000 new homes are anticipated in the industrial area.

      Located less than a kilometre to downtown and the port, False Creek Flats is currently host to 600 businesses and around 8,000 workers.

      The 182-hectare area is bounded by Main Street to the west, Prior and Venables streets to the north, Clark Drive to the east, and Great Northern Way to the south.

      It was once a tidal flat that served as fishing and gathering grounds for indigenous peoples in pre-contact times.

      “While the focus of the Flats is to retain and attract industrial uses, compatible housing opportunities for those who work and learn in the Flats will support community vibrancy and advance City-wide plans for housing affordability and sustainable commuting,” the city’s draft plan states.

      The draft calls for the integration of “new housing opportunities along the western periphery to ease the transition between residential, office and industrial uses”.

      Mount Pleasant is the transition area at the western edge of False Creek Flats.

      Under the plan, zoning will permit “rental housing with a priority for artist live/work studios”.

      The document also provides that student accommodation at the new Emily Carr University of Art + Design will be explored.

      The city also intends to “leverage” its properties to “maximize delivery of non-market housing”.

      In addition, the plan seeks to offer a “a variety of affordable housing choices and community facilities to attract and retain a vibrant workforce, including students, artists, artists with families and young workers”.

      It will consider “live-work and microsuites for priority groups (i.e. students, low income workers and artists)”.

      The plan also proposes a “transition area” between False Creek Flats and the mainly residential neighbourhood of Strathcona.

      This transition area is seen to have a “a combination of industrial and residential along Malkin Avenue”, wherein residential uses are permitted above industries on ground level.

      “This plan seeks to unlock the economic potential of the area by creating a more productive, sustainable and integrated False Creek Flats,” according to the document.

      Toward this direction, the plan will lay policies to “these critical employment lands continue to serve and enhance the City and Regional economy”.

      The plan will increase employment floor space from 5.4 million square feet to around 11 million square feet.

      The plan also expects to increase jobs from the current 8,000 to more than 30,000. These include jobs from the new St. Paul’s Hospital and Emily Carr University of Art + Design.