The Waterfront Vancouver will rise faster now that water levels are falling, developers said Monday.
The project, which spans 22 city blocks on the Columbia River, will welcome two more, 135-foot cranes by the end of August. The apartment buildings will have ground-floor retail, and will join a bevy of other projects either under construction or nearly so.
This summer, steel frames have risen for two mixed-use buildings near the upcoming Grant Street Pier. The buildings combine restaurants and retail, and will house Ghost Runners Brewery, Twigs Bistro and Martini Bar, and WildFin American Grill. All are set to be open next summer.
The work is hitting higher gear now because the river is finally receding, said Barry Cain, whose company Gramor Development is leading the 30-acre development.
“It’s all about the river going down,” he said. “Normally it would have been lower, and there wouldn’t have been any delay in construction.”
Work was set back about two months, Cain said. After heavy rainfall in the winter, followed up by the melting snowpack in the spring, the Columbia River hit its highest point since 1997 and waylaid development.
Cain said the delays were unfortunate but, after a decade of planning the waterfront, they weren’t backbreaking.
“There’s probably some time we lost that we won’t be able to make up,” he said. “I think everybody’s going to work to get things done as quickly as possible.”
Now that work is back in full gear, Cain said the construction cranes will build parking underneath blocks 6 and 8. Block 6 will have 70,000 square feet of underground parking with 165 spaces, while Block 8 boasts 100,000 square feet with 216 spaces.
“Over the next few months, that’s where most of the time will be spent,” for the cranes, Cain said. He added that last week, a 5,000-square-foot, $1.3 million sewer pump went online. It had been in the works since the fall.
Gramor, based in Tualatin, Ore., isn’t the only construction company that battled the river. Tapani Inc. of Battle Ground had to stop work, too, at the 7.3-acre park it is building for the city of Vancouver.