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1833 Crowe Street, Vancouver, BC


Foundry is adjacent to the Vancouver Olympic Village
Building Information
Developer Polygon
Architect James Hancock of IBI/HB Architects
Management Company Pacific Quorum
Number of Units 106
Number of Floors 13
Year Built 2008
Construction Method Concrete
Type of Roof IRMA
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1833 Crowe Street, Vancouver, BC
Distance to Public Transit Less than one block
Region Vancouver
Municipality Vancouver
Zoning CD - 1
Title of Land Strata



City planners in Vancouver tore down a parking lot to put up a paradise.

On a former industrial site, that was once mostly a parking lot, the paradise they built was the Vancouver Olympic Village. It is now one of the greenest communities in the world. Among its many modern innovations are irrigation and sanitation systems which make use of captured rainwater.

The entrance at Foundry

The community has a net-zero building, which sometimes produces more energy than it consumes. Solar panels, green roofing, and other novel practices have made the Village the only community in Canada to achieve LEED Platinum certification, the highest level of certification available for environmentally sustainable building practices. [1]

The development of the Olympic Village was accompanied by its fair share of controversy. The project fell into a major funding crisis at the beginning of 2009, when it became clear that it could not be completed without additional finances. Unlimited access to additional funds was granted by the Province of British Columbia, after an emergency meeting was called.[2]

Foundry is a new 13 storey development standing adjacent to the Olympic Village. Developed simultaneously, but independently, Foundry was developed in the same spirit and with the same goals as the rest of the Village. It is itself LEED Silver certified, and benefits from many of the sustainable practices of the surrounding community.

With an unobstructed view of the Village, Foundry also provides residents with views of the downtown skyline, the North Shore mountains, and a partial view of False Creek. Within easy reach of numerous shopping, dining and transit options, Foundry is a flagship of eco-friendly urban living in one of North America’s most sustainable master-planned communities.[3]


South False Creek is one of the earliest neighbourhoods in Vancouver to undergo a deliberate and conscious transformation in the direction of what city planners have called “livability”. In many ways, it embodies an ideal that all Vancouver neighbourhoods seem to strive for in one way or another: a fusion of modernity, functionality, natural beauty, and connection to history.

The area was originally used and inhabited by members of the Squamish nation. After colonization, it became a heavily industrialized area, beginning in the late 1800s and carrying on into the 20th century. By the 1970s, citizens of Vancouver began to gather support for a new vision of the city. This vision entailed the development of green spaces and parks, the preservation (or restoration) of natural views, and a general move toward comfort and beauty for all, rather than profitability for some. South False Creek, which was located on federal and municipal land, offered project leaders an opportunity to realize this new vision.[4]

Referred to as a “post-modern space”, South False Creek now boasts diverse architectural designs, open public spaces and a vibrant community life. It is also a neighbourhood that has been designed for sustainable living practices. With the 2010 Olympic Village at its heart, residents of this neighbourhood have access to numerous transit options including the Aquabus, bike paths, a public market, and spectacular mountain views.[5]


Foundry, nearly complete

Foundry was completed in 2009, just prior to Vancouver’s 2010 Winter Olympics. Though it is not a part of the Olympic Village officially, it stands adjacent to the Village and was built to compliment it. Its modest stature of thirteen floors is harmonious with the other buildings in South False Creek, allowing for spectacular views from anywhere within the neighbourhood. Though it is of humble height by Vancouver standards, its thirteen floors are, in this neighbourhood, striking. It is a bold and modern tower, standing in elegant contrast to the natural views and organic shapes of the surrounding area.

The lines are strong and clean, emphasizing the graceful geometry of the design. The surfaces are as unadorned as the lines that define them, drawing further attention to the design's basic functionality and minimalism. The use of exposed concrete and aluminum give Foundry a strong, stable and functional feel.

These surfaces also contribute to a slick and modern appearance, when complimented by the over sized glass windows which dominate the sides of the building. The use of terracotta brick at the base connects the futuristic design to a feeling of warmth and homeyness, lending an earthy element to a building that is, after all, designed to be in harmony with its natural environment.[6]

Layout and Features

Impressive views of False Creek are readily available to residents of Foundry, through windows that stand from floor to ceiling. This is especially impressive in a building that is designed with over-height ceilings. The natural light, maximized by this design, is complimented by light woods, natural fibers, and muted colours.

The floor-space for the various units may range from 600 to 1300 square feet, and is cleverly laid out to allow residents to enjoy the most of their space. [7]

The designer kitchens are completed with glossy laminate cabinetry, and stainless steel appliances. The bathrooms are finished with handset imported porcelain tiles, glass-door showers, and large soaker tubs. Elegant wood cabinetry and wide plank laminate wood flooring complete the look of a sophisticated, tasteful and modern living space.[8]

Floor Plans

A sample of the various floor plans is shown below.


Some of the amenities at Foundry include:

  • Full-time resident manager
  • Bike room
  • Secure elevators with restricted floor access to residents only
  • Exercise centre
  • Entry gate videophone
  • Garden space
  • Secured underground parking with video camera surveillance
  • In-suite laundry , with stacking washer/dryer


Foundry Bylaws
Rentals Yes
Pets Yes
Age No

  • Pets may be allowed, upon approval.
  • Rentals are permitted.
  • There are no age restrictions.


The Olympic Village, adjacent to Foundry’s location, is an oasis of eco-friendly urban living. There are six acres of green space in the Village, including parks, gardens, reflecting ponds, and play areas. A non-motorized boating area sits along the seawall, offering visitors and residents the use of dragon boats, canoes, sailboats and kayaks.

The 2010 Olympic Village

The innovative landscaping includes composite stone surfaces, which require no quarrying and need only minimal transport. The Olympic Village is the first neighbourhood in North America to acquire LEED Platinum certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). And it is not just the first, but the only neighbourhood to achieve that distinction.[9]

Foundry stands tall in this haven of eco-consciousness, as an exemplar of sustainable urban living. It boasts LEED Silver certification, making use of energy efficient materials, systems, and appliances wherever possible. It utilizes state of the art heating systems, including hydronic baseboard heating, and it also makes use of systems designed for the Village. [10]

The hydronic baseboard heating, for instance, is supplemented by a central district heating system. Nearby community garden plots are available to residents, as is a car sharing program utilizing energy efficient hybrid cars. The Village also utilizes progressive rainwater management systems, making use of captured rainwater for irrigation and sanitation. With numerous green spaces all around, access to fresh market foods, and even a nearby fish habitat, this developing neighbourhood and its surrounding buildings are an icon for environmentally conscious urban living.[11]


A controversial kangaroo flag
  • The estimated total cost of the Olympic Village is one billion Canadian dollars.
  • The Olympic Village funding crisis was signaled by the resignation of the deputy city manager overseeing construction in 2009.
  • At the time of the funding crisis, an additional $467 million dollars was required by the City of Vancouver to complete the project.
  • Bill 47, which allowed the City of Vancouver access to the additional funds it needed, also allowed the borrowing to occur without a public referendum.
  • A banner featuring a kangaroo wearing boxing gloves was hung in the Olympic Village in February of 2010, and it became the centre of controversy. Though (obviously) not an image of the Australian flag, it was hung by members of the Australian team, and it has been at every Olympic Village since the 2000 games in Sydney. After much dispute and discussion, the flag was allowed to remain.
  • The controversy over the boxing kangaroo flag created demand for a version of it at local Vancouver flag shops.[12]


  1. City of Vancouver Website - Olympic Village
  2. Wikipedia - Olympic Village
  3. Sunstar Realty Ltd. Website
  4. Wikipedia - False Creek
  5. City of Vancouver Website
  6. Skyscraper Page Website
  7. The Vancouver Sun
  8. Les Twarog & Sonja Pedersen Real Estate Website
  9. The Village on False Creek Website
  10. Vancouver Athlete's Village Website
  11. Polygon Website
  12. Wikipedia - Olympic Village

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