Beatty Gate was a three – or six storey building next to the Stadium SkyTrain station and the ‘Spanish Steps’ down to Chinatown and International Village. It had 3 storeys on the Beatty Street side, but as it’s at the top of a hill on the edge of the city’s now hidden escarpment, it had six storeys to the lane behind. Most of the rest of the former warehouses on this stretch of Beatty Street are now condos, but this project designed by IBI/HB with Bruce Carscadden has four extra floors of office (yes, office, not condos!). Our image shows the new windows on the previously very sorry exposed side of the building. The popular Chambar restaurant will move from the neighbouring building, and will have a presence on the plaza – an excellent idea that will bring some activity to an underused space. (There was once another building beside it, but it was demolished for the SkyTrain Station and ‘Spanish Steps’ to Chinatown. Perhaps that should be ‘Chinese Steps’?)
Here’s the building before and after on the Beatty side (and the illustration below). The approval came through almost exactly two years ago, and the developers have successfully leased the building in the meantime to a variety of tenants. The new 50,000 sq ft 10-storey building has a four floor structure that sits on top of the original ‘brick and stick’ warehouse, using cast-in-place concrete. Surprisingly, it was little heavier than a steel structure, allowed greater spacing between columns and improved seismic performance.