Featured in Vancouver Sun Homes

Author: Kathleen Freimond

In Vancouver’s established Dunbar neighbourhood, new multi-family developments and the transformation of an entire city block are such a rarity that developer Qualex-Landmark decided to gather insights from local residents to inspire the design of Legacy, its 48-unit project at Dunbar and 28th Streets.

The site had an existing commercial zoning but recognizing that the area had not undergone any recent big changes, and anticipating downsizers from the area were potential buyers, Jordan Beach, vice-president sales and marketing at Qualex-Landmark, says the company met with neighbourhood residents, asking them what features they would want if they were moving from a single-family to multi-family home.

“There was a resounding response for gas fireplaces on the balconies,” says Beach, who grew up in the area. “They also wanted large format kitchens and bathrooms and big balconies.”

While these features were included in the final design, Beach says the exterior of the building was perhaps not as traditional as some in the neighbourhood would have expected. “We went with a modern but timeless design and incorporated a lot of landscaping on the roof and the different facades of the building to blend in to the area’s tree-lined streets,” he says. Bearing in mind the feedback indicating buyers’ preference for larger homes, there are only 48 units in Legacy, with an average size of 1,200 square feet, says Beach.

“It’s a hybrid, a cross between the smaller downtown multi-family homes and the larger single-family estates in the Dunbar area,” he says of the units in the planned five-storey concrete building.

The 30,763-square-feet site has a 15-foot slope from West 28th Street to West 29th Street, which adds a “half floor” to the southern side of the building.

With the city’s requirement that at least 25 per cent of the rooftop be covered with green landscaping, the landscape architect’s design includes plantings of Vanessa, a Persian ironwood tree cultivar that has a columnar shape canopy and foliage that is particularly beautiful in fall with colours of gold, bronze and crimson.

The nine penthouses (two and three bedrooms) each have a private rooftop terrace – some as large as 1,450 square feet – where owners will be able to install hot tubs.

A shared rooftop amenity space includes lounge seating and a fire bowl, barbecue and space for al fresco dining plus a small edible garden area. This outdoor space will connect with an adjoining indoor lounge. Other planned amenities include an infra-red sauna, gym with outdoor space for yoga, a lobby with a concierge desk and two elevators to access the residential floors and the underground parking garage (parking stalls are EV ready).

To appeal to both downsizers and young families, Scott Trepp of Trepp Design Inc. created two colour schemes – named for prominent streets in the area – Highbury and Collingwood. The interior design is a nod to the established neighbourhood, avoids trends and focuses on a palette of quality materials that Trepp describes as “classically modern.” Finished in the lighter Highbury scheme, the kitchen and ensuite bathroom in the sales centre showcase the developer’s decision to allocate more square footage to these spaces than is typical. Topped with a slab of four by almost 8 feet of Brazilian marble, the island is the showstopper in the kitchen.

“The slab is uninterrupted – the cooktop and sink are on the bank. Everything else is controlled, solid white cabinetry [with wood upper cabinets] so it becomes a foil for the luxurious beauty of the natural material on the island,” says Trepp. The countertop on the side bank of cabinets is a white quartz that also forms the backsplash and continues up the wall above the upper cabinets to the ceiling. This space is also designed to blur the lines between the kitchen and living area with elements like the open shelves at the end of the island. “Some people will use the shelves for cookbooks and kitchen items and others will use them as a display space to augment the living area – this creates a connection between the two spaces,” says Trepp. These wood shelves are complemented by a section of open shelves in the same finish at the back of the kitchen.

A detail to note in the kitchen at the presentation centre is how the 36-inch Wolf gas cooktop is recessed into the countertop, making the grates flush with the quartz surface and the knobs integrated into the millwork. “This gets the knobs off the cooktop itself, so you don’t lose any space,” says Trepp, who points out that it’s also an esthetic detail. “If you can keep the knobs below eye level rather than looking at them, that’s a win.” The electric wall oven and microwave are also by Wolf while the integrated 36-inch refrigerator and freezer and under-counter wine fridge are by Sub-Zero.

Natural stone is also a standout feature in the ensuite bathroom where book-matched travertine slabs provide a dramatic backdrop to the freestanding bathtub while also concealing the separate toilet with a glass door and a shower enclosure. The engineered oak floor that runs throughout the units marks the entrance to the ensuite and continues under the two floating vanities and then transitions to the limestone floor tiles that continue up the walls of the bathroom.

The Italian vanities have LED under-cabinet lighting, and halo light surrounds while the chandelier above the tub – slightly but noticeably offset – adds another layer of light to the luxe space.

In addition to the residences, Legacy will also include ground-level retail space and a public plaza featuring an art seating sculpture by Vancouver sculptor Marie Khouri.

Legacy on Dunbar

Project address: 3596 West 28th Avenue, Vancouver

Developer: Qualex-Landmark

Architect: IBI Group Architects

Interior designer: Trepp Design Inc. (Scott Trepp)

Project size: 48 homes

Bedrooms: 38 (two bedrooms); 7 (three bedrooms); 3 townhomes (two and three bedrooms)

Price: Estimated to start from $1.2 million

Sales centre: 3321 Dunbar Street

Sales centre hours: Early Fall; Open by appointment

Phone: 604-990-8800



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