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Safeway site at Broadway-Commercial Skytrain to be redeveloped

Developer Westbank and Crombie REIT, the owners of the Safeway at Broadway and Commercial next to the Skytrain, are holding an information session soon on the redevelopment of the site, which will include new residential, retail and office space.

An open house is planned for November 19th, and a website has been launched, calling the “revitalization of the Safeway property at Broadway and Commercial an incredible city-building opportunity.”

Architect Bing Thom is involved in the upcoming project, which is expected to transform the existing freestanding grocery store into a high-density residential and commercial development, with additional retail space.

The land is very under-utilized, as it’s right next to the Commercial-Broadway Skytrain station, the busiest station in the network with 90,000 trips per day. That number will only increase with the opening of the Evergreen Line later this year.

The city had originally floated several towers of up to 36 storeys for the site during the Grandview-Woodland planning process, but that idea was scrapped after neighbourhood outrage. The city was forced to backtrack and a Citizens’ Assembly was launched. A scaled back version of the plan with reduced building heights was passed by city council.

The new website and open house reveal some hints about what is envisioned for the Safeway site, including the following details:

Mixed use

  • Consider mix of uses, which may include large format grocery and small‐scale retail, service and community‐serving uses on the first floor and residential and/or commercial uses on upper floors


  • Range between 6 and 24 storeys


  • 5.7 FSR Residential uses: 4.5 FSR Commercial uses: 1.2 FSR minimum (0.5 FSR minimum for office)


  • Explore a new building typology that will support a vibrant public realm
  • Advance the City’s purpose-built rental and market ownership goals
  • Create community-sensitive transit-oriented density that encourages sustainable transportation choices
  • Support a vibrant local economy by locating activities and employment-generating space near transit
  • Create an improved Safeway store to better serve the community, with additional neighbourhood retail that will animate the surrounding streets
  • Push the boundaries of what green urbanism can mean and what it will look like
  • Support community well-being through “social” design, the re-integration of an improved Safeway store, and a safer pedestrian environment
  • Support public art and activities, recognizing the arts as an important community element of The Drive

For more information on the upcoming community open house, scheduled for November 19, visit www.broadwaycommercial.ca

Last updated November 3, 2016

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Peter Meiszner
Peter Meiszner
Peter Meiszner is an experienced journalist and media relations professional, based in Vancouver. As founder of urbanYVR.com, he has been reporting on urban development across the Lower Mainland since 2016, and has also served as vice-chair of the Gastown Historic Area Planning Committee. In October 2022, he was elected to Vancouver city council and is no longer actively reporting for urbanYVR.

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