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Dec. 3, 2022

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Waterfront Vancouver projects Kirkland Tower, Hotel Indigo face delays

Issues with supplies, labor, permitting cited

By , Columbian Innovation Editor
Published:
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The Kirkland Tower is set to open June 1 after multiple delays for supply chain, labor and permitting issues for the hotel and condo project.
The Kirkland Tower is set to open June 1 after multiple delays for supply chain, labor and permitting issues for the hotel and condo project. Regardless, the leaders of Kirkland Development are optimistic about the progress of the building, the fully leased retail space and the sold condo units. (Will Campbell/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

The Kirkland Tower and Hotel Indigo projects at The Waterfront Vancouver are facing more delays, with developers now targeting June 1 as their opening date.

The latest delay involves the building’s fire suppression system, made more complex due to the building’s internal structure, which includes an indoor atrium with a glass ceiling.

“There have been delays, from supply chain and labor shortages,” said Dana Gardner, Kirkland Development project development director. “But we’re very happy with the progress.”

Gardner said that she has the smoke control permits after making minor adjustments, and testing for the systems is underway.

“It’s been a learning experience for us and the city of Vancouver because there’s never been a building like this in Vancouver,” she said.

Chad Eiken, the city’s director of community and economic development, echoed the complexity of the project and said that the smoke suppression system delay is caused by the unique interior of the building.

“It’s a large and complicated design in that there are multiple uses connected by common space. It’s really challenging to figure out how to extract smoke. It’s the city’s main concern is: Let’s make sure the building is going to remain safe.

“Everybody thought it would be done before now,” Eiken said. “There are some good reasons why it’s taken longer. Construction labor issues, trying to find enough people to do work, supply chain materials have been issues, on top of trying to resolve the smoke suppression issues. It’s a convergence of a lot of things.”

Kirkland Tower broke ground in June 2018 as one of the most upscale and complex projects attempted in the city of Vancouver. The building features floor-to-ceiling glass curtains around the 12-story condominium tower called the Kirkland Tower. It shares a wall with the eight-story Hotel Indigo, which will have a glass ceiling, an atrium interior and a rooftop bar.

From the street level of the building, it appears there’s still a little work that needs to be done. Construction fences still surround the building and a few pallets of materials and port-a-potties sit nearby. But the brick and glass bottom floor exterior is nearing its finish, and most of the furniture has been moved into the building.

Half of the 40 condos in the Kirkland Tower have been sold, according to Gardner, and there are no concerns about selling the rest.

“No concerns about wrapping them up,” Gardner said. “We’re setting the trend for the market with price per square foot.”

The condo units range from 900 to 3,100 square feet, and are one-, two- and three-bedroom units. Prices range from $840,000 to $3.3 million.

The project’s total cost went from an estimated $100 million to around $150 million, according to Gardner, but every other aspect of the project has been delivered as first envisioned.

With the retail space completely leased, tenant renovations are nearly complete for the building’s two restaurants, El Gaucho Steakhouse and 13 Coins, which are more than 90 percent complete. Workers are also still constructing the interior of the 13 Coins Coffee shop, Evoke Winery and Amelie, an aesthetic beauty spa.

Gardner also said that a small liquor store that also sells wine and beer will go into the building’s public-accessible lobby. She said the store, about 700 square feet, will be called the Liquor Cabinet and will be the first liquor store at The Waterfront Vancouver.

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