Vancouver House, developed by Vancouver-based firm, Westbank, and designed by BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group) has won Future Project of the Year at the World Architecture Festival (WAF) 2015, the world's largest international architectural event.
More than 2,000 architects and designers from around the world gathered in Singapore, November 4 - 6, for the Festival which celebrates the world’s most innovative developments. This is a double award for Vancouver House; first taking Future Project – Residential Category, followed by being named the over-all winner in the Future Category by WAF’s “Super Jury.” Vancouver House was selected from a pool of 12 Future Project category winners, drawn from 331 shortlisted Future entries from around the world, all of whom exhibited at WAF 2015.
“Bjarke Ingels’ architecture represents an evolutionary moment in Vancouver’s design history,” said Ian Gillespie, President of Westbank. “This is an incredibly prestigious win for Vancouver House and for Vancouver; it recognizes our vision for city-building. Every city needs to have a few special moments that take your breath away, and Vancouver has lacked that until now.”
Bjarke Ingels said, "Vancouver House is incredibly ambitious both socially in turning the Granville Bridge overpass into an urban canopy and architecturally in providing the well tested Vancouver urbanism of slender residential towers on podiums with a fresh interpretation with the expanding tower emerging from its urban village. To receive this endorsement from the World Architecture Festival is incredibly encouraging now that we are in the midst of realising this new Vancouver community."
World Architecture Festival judges selected the project, stating it "Mitigates the destructive impact of the highway fly-over on infrastructure and urban form, and generates an exemplar new urban typology. It is a delightful project that will impact positively on many future municipality- and developer-led agendas for cities across the world."
In Vancouver, Leslie Van Duzer, Professor at the University of British Columbia’s School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, said. “Vancouver House represents the confluence of an enlightened planner, a visionary developer and an architect who makes a practice of turning society’s detritus (in this case, a site with sprawling off-ramps) into gold. Such rare alchemy is most worthy of this significant global prize. Vancouver, long known for its exemplary urban planning, may yet earn a sustained place on the world stage for its architecture."
Developed by Vancouver-based development firm, Westbank and designed by BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group), Vancouver House is now actively under construction at 1460 Howe Street, in the city’s downtown core. Vancouver House’s innovative design makes it appear to twist from a 560 square metre (6,000 square foot) narrow base into a 1,300 square metre (14,000 square foot) rectangular tower, rising 59-storeys above Beach Avenue at the foot of Howe Street. Its pioneering design is in response to its proximity to the north end of Granville Street Bridge and adjacent buildings. Vancouver House is set to become one of the tallest buildings on the city’s skyline at 156 metres (512 feet) with 375 individual residential homes, and includes the creation of an urban village at the tower’s base, complete with offices, retail, rental apartments, restaurants and outdoor spaces; all of which will create and define the new Beach District neighbourhood.
Westbank and BIG have three projects under development in Canada. In addition to Vancouver House, there is TELUS Sky in Calgary, Alberta in partnership with TELUS and Allied Properties REIT slated for completion in 2018 and a recently announced project on King Street West in Toronto, Ontario, also in partnership with Allied Properties REIT.
Jill Killeen, Westbank
Office: (778) 340-8800
Cellular: (778) 837-8907