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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

New building planned near site of Kitsilano fire

A small, three-and-a-half storey building is slated for West 4th Avenue near Macdonald Street, near the site of a building destroyed by fire.

The fire in July 2018 destroyed the Topanga Cafe, a popular California-style Mexican restaurant that was a fixture of the block, as well as Euro-Line appliances and a foot reflexology centre. Several tenants above the Topanga Cafe also lost their homes.

Now, BÜRO47architecture inc has designed a boutique building for the west side of the site, where the Euro-Line appliances was located.

Kitsilano buildings lost to fire
Birds eye view showing buildings destroyed by fire. Credit: BÜRO47architecture

It will include two retail units on the first floor, and four residential units above. Four parking spaces and 15 bicycle parking stalls will be provided. 

The lower level of the building will be clad in masonry, and the upper levels with near-white, cementitious panels.

Interestingly, the building is requesting a parking relaxation from the city, as the four parking spaces proposed are still three spaces short of the city’s requirement.

The architect says the building should receive an exemption because of its location on a frequent transit route (West 4th Avenue), as well as access to several car share options nearby. 

The developer is also offering a “two-way car share membership” to remain associated with each residential unit for 20 years, and $50/month in TransLink Compass Card subsidies to the commercial retail tenants for a period of 10 years. 

The building will be called The Highbury.

The project is across the street from a new residential development planned for the corner of West 4th and Macdonald, which will also include a London Drugs store on the ground floor.

2803-2865 West 4th Avenue proposed building
Proposed London Drugs at West 4th and Macdonald in Kitsilano.

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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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