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Jan. 26, 2023

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Construction work continues at The Waterfront Vancouver

Cranes overlook development as work on housing, hotel, retail buildings underway

By , Columbian staff writer
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Among those buildings under construction are numerous residential towers including a senior living facility, The Springs. The parking lot in the foreground is also scheduled to become housing.
Among those buildings under construction are numerous residential towers including a senior living facility, The Springs. The parking lot in the foreground is also scheduled to become housing. (Amanda Cowan/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Cranes along the river at The Waterfront Vancouver are in no short supply this December, with about half a dozen buildings currently or soon to be under construction and more development coming.

“It’ll be a busy place,” said Barry Cain, president of Gramor Development of Lake Oswego, Ore., which is the lead developer of The Waterfront Vancouver. “That’s what we wanted. We wanted it to be an urban environment on the water.”

Here’s what’s going on at the moment:

Work on The Springs senior living facility started this summer on Block 18, fronting the waterfront park west of the restaurant buildings. The 12-story building is set to include about 250 private residences. Tenants can enjoy an indoor swimming pool, fitness and wellness center, spa, massage area, hair salon, theater, art studio, medical clinic, restaurant, full bar and secure underground parking.

The Springs is based in McMinnville, Ore., and owns and operates 18 senior living communities in Oregon and Montana.

The Springs is expected to open in 2024.

At the far west end of the development, near a traffic roundabout, Modera Vancouver is planned for Block 21. The 14-story building will have 268 apartments averaging 750 square feet. The building will have 2,400 square feet of retail on the ground floor.

Construction on that development is expected to begin in the spring. The project is by Mill Creek, a national multifamily development company.

Just east of Modera Vancouver lies Block 19, which will be a seven-story residential building developed by Alliance Residential. The building is expected to have 180 apartments as well as underground parking. Cain anticipates that opening in 2024.

Alliance Residential is a national real estate developer headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz.

On Block 17, the next block to the east, Alliance is currently building Broadstone Claro. That building, which should be done this month, is a seven-story residential tower with underground parking and 178 units. It also has about 2,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space.

The building will have a conference room, coworking space, a catering-ready hospitality station, a 1,500-square-foot fitness center and a private exterior courtyard.

Meanwhile, construction on the waterfront’s first parking garage is set to begin in January on Block 7, on the northeast corner of Columbia Way and Grant Street. It will include eight stories of parking and over 11,200 square feet of ground-floor retail. The initial proposal for the building was for 830 parking spaces.

Just east of that, past Block 5, which is a temporary parking lot, construction is underway on Block 3. Facade installation is underway on this high-rise residential building by Summit Development. Expected to open in 2023, the building will house 180 apartments.

On the easternmost end of the Gramor development are Blocks 1 and 2, both of which are being developed by Lincoln Properties. Neither is yet under construction. Lincoln’s plans call for 24,500 square feet of retail and restaurant space, 171,000 square feet of office space and 200 apartments, all expected to open in 2024.

Port projects

Meanwhile, farther east at the Port of Vancouver’s Terminal 1, a new building for Vancouver technology company ZoomInfo is expected to be completed in 2025. Currently under construction, it will include 366,000 square feet of space. Across the street, the former Red Lion Hotel at the Quay site is due to have some pilings and decking replaced before it is eventually redeveloped.

Construction of the parking garage is a big moment for The Waterfront Vancouver development, Cain said. It was one of the last planned projects and means there’s only a handful of properties left.

Currently, Blocks 14, 10 and 5 are currently being used as temporary surface parking, but will be available for development when the parking garage on Block 7 is complete. Block 11, which provides surface parking closest to the restaurants, is under contract and is expected to become a residential property. Block 16 along the waterfront is being used for construction of The Springs and will be available when that project is finished.

The triangular-shaped Block 15 is a park.

For area natives, The Waterfront Vancouver is an unbelievable achievement given that the entire property was used for paper manufacturing for more than 80 years.

“It’s really satisfying,” Cain, who planned the development from its infancy, told The Columbian.

“A lot of people didn’t think that Vancouver was capable of having something of this quality,” Cain remarked.

“I don’t think anybody doubts it now.”