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Monday, June 17, 2024

Terraced ‘Forest Hill’ concept in North Vancouver seeks development partners

A spectacular tower concept inspired by the forest could soon liven up the skyline of Central Lonsdale.

The concept for ‘Forest Hill’ was created by Alterativ Design Lab, an international design firm based in Vancouver and co-led by Mehdi Einifar, a designer who previously worked at Perkins+Will and Henriquez Partners Architects, and Soudeh Keypour. Einifar worked on high-profile projects such as Oakridge by Westbank and Bosa Properties’ recently-completed Cardero tower.

The concept by Alterativ Design Lab is being floated for several lots at Lonsdale and 14th, across from the North Vancouver City public library. The intention is to go through a land assembly and the rezoning process with the City of North Vancouver.

Renderings: ‘Forest Hill’ by Alterativ Design Lab

Alterativ Design Lab concept
Controlled amount of glazing and opening on the building increase energy efficiency and also contribute to environmental goals of the project. The greenery on the south and west side of the building also help with natural cooling and shading for the units. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab
Forest Hill mass timber residential
A modular mass timber structure creates both an environmentally-friendly solution and expedites the construction process. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab
Alterativ Design Lab concept
Looking north from Lonsdale Avenue & 13th. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab
Forest Hill rendering
The Forest Hill project is currently in the early design stage. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab
Looking south from Lonsdale Avenue and 15th
Looking south from Lonsdale Avenue and 15th. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab
Forest Hill rendering - Alterativ Design Lab concept
A distinct entry and an all-wood interior design of the lobby are also unique design features of the project. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab
Forest Hill rendering - Alterativ Design Lab concept
Rendering of Forest Hill concept in North Vancouver. Credit: Alterativ Design Lab

The terraced form of the building is designed to ensure sunlight on the library plaza, as well as providing useable outdoor space for residents. The orientation of the units maximizes views of the downtown Vancouver skyline and evening sunsets to the west. The top six floors have penthouse/sub-penthouse-quality units. 

Einifar says the building aims to set a new standard for environmentally-friendly, contextual buildings in Metro Vancouver that are sensitive to their surroundings.

The design concept calls for a mass-timber structure and modular construction, based off of a 3.5 metre by 7.5 metre cross-laminated timber module. The facade is finished with an acetylated wood cladding, and the limited openings are meant to help the homes achieve energy efficiency and fulfill Passive House requirements.

The concept is seeking additional height and an increased FSR to offset the cost of providing public benefit in avoiding shading the public plaza and creating an environmentally-friendly building.

Einifar says he hopes to grab the attention of local developers and architects who can help bring the ‘Forest Hill’ concept to life.

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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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