Vancouver real estate: fight looms over plaza in Safeway redevelopment on Broadway and Commercial

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      The community plan called for a new and centrally located plaza.

      Developers previously wanted to move the square outside the Safeway site.

      Now a plaza is back on the drawing board for the Broadway and Commercial Drive location in East Vancouver.

      However, it’s not at the centre as envisioned by the Grandview-Woodland Community Plan approved by city council in 2016.

      Based on plans submitted to the City of Vancouver, the plaza will be on the western edge of the property.

      It’s going to be sandwiched by the Broadway-Commercial SkyTrain Station and a new Safeway store.

      Community activist Jak King wrote online that the proposed design for the plaza “seems less like a public gathering space for families”.

      According to King, it’s more like an “enhanced foyer for both the Safeway store and the Skytrain station”.

      Developers Crombie Real Estate Investment Trust and Westbank have a website promoting the redevelopment of the Safeway site.

      “The major new urban edge of the project is formed by the creation of the new public open plaza, which runs from East 10th Avenue north to Broadway,” according to the site.

      In addition, “The plaza is considered a positive contribution to the invigoration of the Broadway Commercial Drive intersection, faithfully addressing the urban design goals of the Grandview Woodland Community Plan.”

      According to the developers, the plaza will be “animated with small, unique retail and child friendly activities and be fully accessible to the public”.

      A Perkins and Will rendering of the proposed concept for the plaza adjacent to the SkyTrain station.

      Three residential towers are proposed for the property.

      The three buildings will be “arranged around the periphery of the site framing a landscaped courtyard that is accessible to all residents and tenants”.

      The towers will have heights of 24, 27, and 30 storeys.

      These elevations surpass the levels indicated in the Grandview-Woodland Community Plan.

      The council-approved community plan provides for buildings with heights ranging from 12 to 24 storeys.

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