Revitalizing the Orphaned Site: 6th & Fir Bridgehead Project
Revitalizing the Orphaned Site: The 6th & Fir Bridgehead Interface Project
Nestled in a transitional zone between the light industrial area and low to mid-rise residential zone of Vancouver, the 6th and Fir site had been considered an 'orphaned' or 'abandoned' space. However, the Henriquez Partners Architects' team saw the potential of this site and transformed it into a vibrant community space with a 15-storey development.
Overcoming Challenges and Embracing Opportunities
The site presented many challenges, including its location near a major bridge off-ramp, noise pollution, and limited height restrictions. Despite previous unsuccessful attempts by other firms to get the necessary approvals, the Henriquez team's community-oriented approach and unique design led to a City of Vancouver rezoning approval. The new design's curved morphology and façade not only reduce noise pollution but also reorient the views towards the picturesque Burrard Inlet and maximize the sunlight into the neighbouring buildings below.
Enhancing the Community's Cultural Fabric
The 6th & Fir design acknowledges its position within the community by creating a central boardwalk, connecting the development to surrounding open spaces and parks while extending the local street front. The boardwalk is flanked by artists' studios and a retail space, contributing to the cultural fabric of Vancouver. The inclusion of subsidized artists' studios, owned by the City, further enhances the local community's artistic offerings and provides a new outlet for creative expression.
A Sustainable and Aesthetically Appealing Development
The Henriquez team's design not only enhances the community's cultural offerings but also prioritizes sustainability and aesthetics. The "vegetated frames" emphasize the views and limit sightlines to and from the off-ramp, while landscaped planters provide additional visual screening. The wood cladding and soffit absorb sound, and the concrete construction and acoustically-rated glazing further enhance noise reduction. The result is a sustainable and aesthetically appealing development that harmoniously integrates with its surroundings.
In conclusion, the 6th & Fir Bridgehead Interface Project is a testament to Henriquez Partners Architects' innovative and community-oriented approach. By transforming an orphaned site into a vibrant community space, the Henriquez team has revitalized the area, enhanced the community's cultural fabric, and prioritized sustainability and aesthetics. The 6th & Fir development is a model for future revitalization projects and demonstrates the power of community-oriented design.