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07 MARCH 2022
Grosvenor has just unveiled its master plan for a pedestrian-focused development that will include one of the largest rental housing schemes in Metro Vancouver. The proposed development has just been approved by the City of Burnaby to move forward to consultation and is poised to transform a 7.9-acre site into a thriving, sustainable mixed-use community with approximately 3,500 new homes, including 2,450 rental homes, a new urban, multi-storey community centre and approximately 200,000 square feet of commercial space on transit.
The development, for which Grosvenor is currently seeking co-investment equity partners and construction financing, takes an innovative approach to design and operations and aims to be a model for future large-scale, pedestrian-focused, transit-oriented rental developments. Featuring the tallest all-rental tower in Western Canada at over 60 storeys, the development will deliver approximately 2,000 market rental and 450 below-market rental homes.
“Reaching this important milestone is a result of hundreds of hours engaging with the community, collaboration with the City of Burnaby and thoughtful environmental consideration rooted in Grosvenor’s net zero commitment. Our master plan development addresses the significant regional housing challenges of an undersupplied rental market and will bring much needed rental housing to the community,” states James Patillo, Chief Development Officer for Grosvenor’s North American development program.
This will be one of the first projects of this scale to have an entirely pedestrian ground plane, with all cars accessing the underground from the site’s periphery. The master plan also incorporates an abundance of green space in a public courtyard for both residents and the general public, including landscaped trails for pedestrians and routes for cyclists and a new, approximately 100,000 square foot community centre for the City of Burnaby that is anticipated to attract well over one million visitors a year.
“Both Metro Vancouver and the Brentwood neighbourhood have enjoyed significant growth over the last several years and we see more runway ahead,” states Brian Biggs, Vice President of Research for Grosvenor in North America. “Vancouver apartment rental growth has outpaced inflation, on average, since the late 1980s. Such strong rental growth reflects high demand for Vancouver residential space, with apartments seeing an average 1.2% vacancy rate since the early 1970s. Demand for Vancouver apartments will continue to be supported by several factors including competitive labour costs, the transition to a tech-based labour force, high levels of education and continued inward migration. In this environment, we anticipate Brentwood’s central, transit-oriented location and expanding amenity offering will drive above-market rental performance.”
Furthermore, the environmental impacts of the site were taken into careful consideration and upon completion, the development will exceed the City of Burnaby’s sustainability requirements, as well as achieve Grosvenor’s corporate commitment to net zero carbon in operational emissions from all directly managed buildings by 2030.
“Given its scale and impact, our Brentwood development site in Metro Vancouver is a prime example of how we are operationalizing our net zero ambitions,” said Steve O’Connell, Chief Executive of Grosvenor’s property business in North America. “The team has focussed on creating a sustainable community in direct proximity to mass transit and in line with our progressive ESG ambitions. We are striving to develop highly-efficient buildings that reduce operational carbon, provide significant green space and make a positive social contribution to the Brentwood community. Our team has engaged meaningfully with the local community and we are thrilled to have the Brentwood Community Center be a central part of this transit-oriented and pedestrian-focused development.”
Today’s approval to advance Grosvenor’s master plan to consultation is a manifestation of many years of careful planning and collaboration with the City of Burnaby. The resulting vision strives to be a game-changer not only for the city, but for the region as a whole.
Cori Howard Communications