Home Depot, Winners sign up to RISE

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Development will be third-largest retail centre in city

Ashley Ford

Architect’s drawing shows what Grosvenor’s new retail-condo development will look like at Cambie and Seventh.

International property giant Grosvenor is now out of the ground with RISE, the city’s third-largest retail centre.

The project bounded by 7th and 8th Avenues and Cambie and Yukon has attracted three of the biggest names in retail — Home Depot, Winners and Save-On Foods as anchor tenants.

In essence, the development coupled with others nearby such as Best Buy and Canadian Tire and more retail going in along Main and Cambie are creating a new “mid-town” retail centre.

Grosvenor is a privately-owned international property group headed by the Duke of Westminster, for many years the richest person in Britain, although now third wealthiest behind Indian industrialist Lakshim Mittal and Russian oil tycoon Roman Abramovich.

The $120-million RISE will combine 200,000 square feet of retail with 92 rooftop, live-work townhomes.

It will only trail Pacific Centre and Oakridge in retail size and service the fast-growing residential communities of Fairview Slopes and southeast False Creek that will eventually house the 2010 Winter Olympic Village plus other planned housing developments.

“It will rival Oakridge when completed,” said Andrew Bibby, Grosvenor chief development officer. “Perhaps what is most interesting is that we initially intended it to be a retail development only but the city proposed we add two levels of live/work units.”

Bibby said Save-On was long looking to come into Vancouver and at first Home Depot said no, but then changed its mind.

“We started talking with Winners fairly recently and the result is 90 per cent of the retail space is spoken for and we only have some small shop places left,” Bibby said.

The development is also strategically situated between two future transit stations — at Broadway and at Second Avenue — on the coming Canada Line that will link Vancouver International Airport and Richmond with the downtown waterfront.

Home Depot will have a 78,000-square-foot operation, offering products and services specifically designed to appeal to the surrounding urban neighbourhood.

Winners and Home Sense will occupy 60,000 square feet and sit atop Home Depot.

Save-On will occupy 45,000 square feet at the northwest corner facing Cambie and 7th Avenue.

There are 500 underground parking stalls for retail customer and another 100 for residents.

At street level, RISE will be home to a mix of boutiques and cafes, and is designed to be both pedestrian-friendly and bike accessible.

The 92 live-work rooftop homes will be in a garden setting that will include almost 0.8 hectares of roof landscaped green space. The project is set for completion late next year.

Grosvenor has been in Vancouver since 1951, when it announced its presence with the purchase of Annacis Island on the Fraser River. Its investments can be found in the Americas, UK and Ireland, Europe, Australia and the Pacific Rim. It manages or has interests in about $17.3 billion worth of real estate.

© The Vancouver Province 2006

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