Meccanica

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108 East 1st Avenue, Vancouver

Meccanica
Meccanica-Vancouver-Rendition.jpg

A rendition of what the upcoming Meccanica will look like upon completion
Building Information
Developer Cressey Development
Architect Rafii Architects
Management Company MAC Marketing Solutions
Number of Units 170
Number of Floors 12
Year Built 2014
Construction Method Steel
Type of Roof IRMA
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108 East 1st Avenue, Vancouver
Distance to Public Transit Bus stops nearby, Skytrain accessible
Region Vancouver
Municipality Vancouver
Zoning CD-1 (522)
Title of Land Strata


Contents

Background

Separating from the crowd and being unique is a harder task than it sounds. While the first to innovate has the advantage, others will soon follow in step, and eventually what made the first entity special is now run of the mill. Thus, innovation has to continue in order to avoid stagnation. A prime example of this phenomenon in action is Vancouver, a city filled to the brim with buildings that all strive to stand out and be more than just a place to live. Some succeed, while some unfortunately do not.


Meccanica, an upcoming building from the Cressey Development Group, is in turn an excellent example of continuing innovation. The name is inspired by Intermeccanica, the custom builder of replica Speedsters and Roadsters, the original company who worked on the lot. The craftsman concept was embraced by Cressey, and Intermeccanica will enjoy a brand new showroom and modern workspace located at the base of the finished Meccanica tower.


On the inside, high-design guided Cressey's decision making, and beautiful, high-end finishings that are standard in each home can be found throughout. A glass and steel complex that aims to utilize tenets from the automotive world in its design, the current renditions of what the architects have in mind for the structure make it look tremendously different from the average condominium. It will be comprised of two sections, a 12 story tower and a smaller base structure beside it, with the two being connected via a glass enclosed bridge. The tower will contain 89 of the 170 units, with the other section holding the other 81.[1]


With construction well underway as of April 2013, Meccanica is slowly but surely inching toward the finish line, and when it is ready for occupancy there is no doubt that the people who choose to live there will have chosen one of the most distinctive buildings in the city to call home.


Location

A shot of Mount Pleasant

Located on East 1st Avenue in Vancouver, Meccanica is located in the heart of Southeast False Creek. This brand new master-planned neighbourhood is already full of thousands of new residents, and new amenities that are loved by locals such as Urban Fare, Terra Breads, Legacy Liquor Store, London Drugs, the Tap & Barrel Pub, and brand new Craft Beer Market. The seawall and sidewalks are packed daily with dog-walkers, joggers and bikers.


Soon, the newly programmed Quebec Street will be home to brand new bike lanes, lushly landscaped sidewalks and pathways to connect residents to the waterfront. Meccanica is also close to the Mount Pleasant Area, and by extension, the wealth of shops and attractions that lie in the neighbourhood. As the area of choice for first time home owners and young, growing families, placing their building there was certainly a sensible move from the Cressey Development Group.[2]


Prospective residents of Meccanica will be glad to find out that the need for a car is slim to none; the Walk Score of 92 attests to that, as many services and stores are well within walking distance. Should residents need to go somewhere outside of their immediate neighborhood though, Vancouver's transit system is ready and able to provide transportation.


There are around 60 bus stops near Meccanica and with that many stops comes easy access to the SkyTrain, Vancouver's renowned elevated light rail system. Downtown Vancouver, Richmond, and other regions of the city are all easily accessible even without a car. There are also a number of schools nearby, though the closest ones target more esoteric fields such as acting and music as opposed to the traditional K-12 facilities.[3]


Construction

Construction progress as of April 2013

Meccanica is a concrete residential tower, and as one may be able to infer from its name, is heavily influenced by its automotive namesake. Meccanica's exterior, once completed, be comprised of a striking combination of metal and glass, with surges of colour for contrast.


Of note is the western facade, which is patterned after automotive grilles and serve to act as a cooling mechanism during hot days by deflecting the sun. Even the building's smooth profile itself is meant to be evocative of the replica Porsche models once built on the same site many years ago.


The result will be a steel and glass colossus comprised of straight lines and symmetry, eschewing curves in favour of precise angles. Meccanica's architecture is also influenced by the underlying layouts of each unit, as Cressey strives meticulously to design the best floor plans for comfort and living.


Layout and Features

When completed, Meccanica will have a total of 170 units split up between the main structure and the tower section. The spacious units come in a variety of intelligent and efficient configurations, with studios, one bedroom, one bedroom and den, two bedroom, and two bedroom and den residences being offered. The smallest studio is still a spacious 555 square feet, while the largest two bedroom and den penthouse will be close to 1,500 square feet. Every unit includes private outdoor space, ranging from a petite "Juliet" balcony to ample rooftop decks.

The standout feature in each unit is the kitchen, which has been branded by the developer as the "CresseyKitchen". It's easy to see why - there is simply so much space, for cooking and for storage. And, it's incredibly visually appealing. It looks like a chef's kitchen in a designer show-space. European appliances are integrated into the purchaser's choice of high-gloss lacquer or matte wood cabinets. Quartz counter tops and back splash are both durable and beautiful. Under-cabinet lighting adds warmth to these modern spaces.

Meccanica's interiors break the mold as much as its exterior, with high-design features rarely seen in most condominium developments. Choose between rich hardwood or polished concrete floors. Enjoy air-conditioning, roller-blinds, and an over sized statement door. Best of all, these homes feature ample storage throughout. Additional features include a common rooftop deck, residents' lounge, garden plots, and fitness centre with state-of-the-art equipment. [4]

Floor Plans

A selection of Meccanica's floor plans are picture below:


Amenities

Some of the amenities that Meccanica will offer are:

  • Garden plots
  • Gym
  • Rooftop deck with barbecues
  • Dining hall with demo kitchen
  • Bike storage
  • Children's play area

As the building is still under construction, there are no physical photos available. The website, however, does offer two virtual 'tours' of units, giving people a chance to see what the projected units will eventually look like.[5][6]

Bylaws

Meccanica Bylaws
Rentals Yes
Pets Yes
Age No
Barbecues Yes


  • There will be rentals allowed
  • Pets will be permitted
  • There will be no age restriction on residents
  • A shared barbecue area will be available

Sustainability

While there was no indication that there were any specific measures taken to ensure sustainability, the fact remains that certain design choices wind up helping the environment, even if they were not necessarily meant to be green.

For instance, the grille inspired western facade can cut down on energy use by acting as a screen on very hot days, reducing the need for air conditioning. In addition, the building's heating set-up is energy efficient, and the plethora of windows also ensure an abundance of natural light, which cuts down on the amount of electricity used to power artificial lights.

Trivia

A custom Porsche 356 from Intermeccanica
  • The name Meccanica actually comes from the automobile firm Intermeccanica, a company that built replica Porsche vehicles for more than 30 years on the location where Meccanica will be erected[7]
  • All the floor plan names (Speedster, Roadster, Turbo) are automobile terms utilized by Porsche at one point or another
  • The Cressey Development Group has been responsible for over 200 projects since 1969


References

  1. Building Specs
  2. Mount Pleasant on Wikipedia
  3. Walk Score
  4. Models
  5. Video tour of Speedster Model A on Youtube
  6. Video tour of Roadster Model B on Youtube
  7. Story on Meccanica


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