250 Powell Street

Remand Centre 1When our first ‘before’ picture was taken, in 2002, the Remand Centre round the corner from the Main Street courthouse was just closing. Designed by Richard Henriquez in the late 1970s and completed in 1983, the building was taken out of commission as it became unnecessary to hold enough prisoners on remand to warrant the cost of running the building.

In 2008 the bottom floors were converted to the Community Court, but the upper floors and their massive concrete pods remained unused. A $21m makeover later, designed by Henriquez Partners, the building is now a 96 unit low cost and non-market housing project managed for B C Housing by the Bloom Group.

Remand Centre 2

Before images: 2002 and 2012; After images 2015.


The Lauren – Comox and Broughton

Lauren 1The Lauren is the first rental tower to be added to the West End in decades. Designed by Henriquez partners for Westbank Peterson, the tower replaced St. John’s United Church, a 1981 structure that was sold by the church authorities in 2009.

Alexandra – Davie Street

Alexandra 1

Alexandra replaces a really nondescript retail unit on the corner of Davie and Maxine’s, a former beauty parlour that later became a restaurant. Maxine’s is still there, sort of, with some of the facade retained and repaired. On the lower floors of the building are rental apartments, and there are condos in the remaining part of the 19 storey tower, designed by Henriquez Partners Architects.

Before images 2009, after images 2013.

Alexandra 2

700 West 8th

700 W 8th

Some websites thought this building was called ‘Icon’ – but that was the construction company. Another Westbank project, 800 W8th was an ingeniously designed Henriquez Architects condo on the surface parking lot of the Holiday Inn on West Broadway. The ingenuity was squeezing such a huge building onto the site, and it was achieved by taking the shadow cast by the early 1970s hotel and shaping the condo tower to ensure it wasn’t any worse.

before image 2008; after image 2013


Woodwards 1

Woodwards is known for the two massive condo towers with over 500 apartments, and another 200 units of non-market housing. On the Hastings side the brickwork of the original 1903 W T Whiteway building was tied to a new frame, with offices behind, while further west a new building houses SFU’s Arts Faculty with residential above. Inside the Henriquez Partners designed atrium is a huge artwork by Stan Douglas called Abbott & Cordova, 7 August 1971, with a recreation of the violent end to a Gastown clash between the police and counter-culture of the day. There’s a food store and London Drugs too.

before images 2003 and 2005; after images 2010

Woodwards 2