BIG's Beach & Howe Tower Proposal

Beach and Howe Tower at Night

A few weeks ago we got our hands on a leaked rendering of Vancouver’s most daring architectural proposal by Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) architects. There is now more known about the project, thanks to Jlousa at for sending this out, as an application to rezone the site has been received by the city of Vancouver.

The proposal is for a mixed-use development. On the Howe Street side, there will be a 49-storey residential tower with a 9-storey podium which includes market rental housing, commercial uses, and a childcare facility. The building height is at 150 metres and will be the tallest building on the southern end of downtown and the 4th tallest building in the city, unless the Ritz Carlton site gets developed before this, in which case it would be the 5th tallest.

On the Granville Street and Pacific Street side, is a 6-storey building providing retail (including a grocery store, drugstore and liquor store) and office space.

The project area is 653,046 sq. ft.
– 424,800.9 sq. ft. strata residential
– 68,245.4 sq. ft. rental residential
– 67,814.9 sq. ft. retail
– 63,885.9 sq. ft. office space, and
– 6,996.8 sq. ft. childcare

The building will contain a total of 600 residential units including 180 market rental units, 713 parking spaces, 8 loading bays and 270 bike spaces.

Here are some renderings of the proposal:


Here is how the building will utilize the area underneath Granville Street Bridge:

Here is the Beach and Howe tower in context to other tall buildings in the city and the south side of the city:

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  • Kashif Pasta

    I absolutely LOVE BIG! Had no idea they were doing a Vancouver building, their other work is seriously SO amazing. BIG buildings are so much more than just buildings, they have huge impacts on their communities.

  • george

    looks great – will this be the location for the whole foods?

  • David W Lemley

    I love how this one uses the space under the bridge. If they’re not going to tear down the viaducts, they should use them like that too (especially the Georgia Viaduct), otherwise its such a waste of space.¬†

  • Yogiderek

    Finally a cool looking building that is not a square box, it should go even higher

  • Laurent

    Everything was #win about this building until they used Twilight as the sample image for the movie screen #fail #twihard

  • Desdf

    I live in the area, and this is great use of space and will open up the area under the bridge, and has a cool design

  • Jen

    I love it! I hope it gets approved soon ūüėÄ

  • Giovanni

    I Just love it vegas STYLE

  • Tf

    not really a fan. why would we want vancouver to look like Vegas? does anyone want to be in Vegas for more than a few days? I love Vancouver’s boutique style buildings, we are not Dubai or Hong Kong. I’d rather see us become class like New York, rather than trash like Vegas. BUT, in saying that, architecture wise, it is stunning, and would be quite a feat. I just don’t think it suits Vancouver.

  • Swoosh

    Umm, New York is doing buildings like this now. Basically every world class city is. I am happy to see some creativity in building design in Vancouver.

  • coco

    This is the kind of architectural statement that we need in Vancouver as a ‘one off ‘ against a backdrop of new buildngs.¬† THe ground plane and urban realm must work to enliven what could be a rather unpleasant space under the bridge.¬† Given the talent involved…BIG…I think this could be a really marvellous project.

  • Guest

    How exactly does this even look like Vegas?  Travel much?

    Vancouver is the only city I’ve been to with a disdain for creativity.

  • Gregor316

    yeah, it’s a square box with twist – “cool” by Vancouver standards I guess.

  • guest

    People who liken this to “Vegas style” clearly haven’t travelled much, don’t follow architecture, or both. This is a stunning proposal in almost every way (minus points for Twilight). It will be an absolutely amazing addition to the neighbourhood, downtown, and Vancouver in general. I can only hope the city grants temporary liquor licences (and whatever other permits that might be needed) so that the under the bridge plans are able to be fully realized.

  • Drumhock2

    This is such an interesting design! Love how much information there is here on it. Skyline, and renderings look amazing! very futuristic. 

  • Simon

    Twilight on the movie screen? Really? Render-fail.

  • Bbehnia11

    Agreed, it’s that typical West Coast Isolationist attitude that doesn’t realize or reward great design and high quality aesthetic features, mostly from people who were born and raised here. Thank god for the immigrants who brought some class to this City!

  • guest

    This area has needed new development for a while. I hope the proposal goes through. Design is secondary to the need for me.

  • celtic64

    Although I disagree with your comments, I think the building looks good. I was born here. Were you? I enjoyed the city when we had clear views of the mountains. Just drive¬†north over the Iron Worker’s Memorial bridge and admire the view.¬†Yes, that is what “isolates” us from the rest of shitty boring, cold or sweltering smoggy cities like Toronto. I have been to Toronto, actually lived there for a year, and¬†Montreal, Calgary and Edmonton. Vancouver, is the best. The west is best. And about “immigrants” bringing “class” to the city, they also have brought crass with many unsitely, post-Expo 86 condos. Also, the Wall Centre is ugly, and The Shangri-La building is a view blocker. I love great architecture and I am in favour of unique new ideas that improve upon wasted space. Having entertainment under a noisy, dirty bridge is not a good idea. A¬† lot of our best architecture was built by locals like Arthur Erikson. Too many high-rises are not a good idea for Vancouver, based on where the main downtown area was settled over one hundred years ago. There are other ways. Even though some of us were born here, we are all immigrants.

  • Ron

    Finallt a building with some architecture!!!!!! We should be dancing in the streets that we have something besides green glass boxes. 

  • Art Vandelaye

    Wow”……….. a developer willing to NOT follow the developer theorem for the cheapest possible floor plate for the maximum return………as is every green glassed tower on our skyline…..The architects fees to hire B.I.G. would make our Vancouver developers cringe.

  • Vancouverstreetblog

    Yes a great design!

  • guest

    Love it.  Exciting, innovative, imaginative.   Great use of dark and dead space.  Will bring services and energy to an under-serviced area.

  • Mark

    Check out some of Bjarke Ingels’ past projects – he doesn’t just twist buildings for the sake of being “cool”. Every design decision he makes is deliberate, made to afford users the best views and take advantage of the way the sun passes through the sky to capture maximum light.

  • sam

    Tf – you are a moron! Vancouvers boutique style!!? wtf

  • raaaaaaaaaaaah

    ¬†you’re and absolute idiot…

  • Beach Ave Guy

    Looks great…love it, and love the rendering for what’s under the Granville Street Bridge : that mundane abandoned block could use something like this to breath some life into it!¬† It’s just what this corner of town needs!!

  • Guest

    And let 

  • VANCITYrules

    square box with a twist? you clearly have no clue what a complex building this is from an architectural or construction standpoint…….thanks for your contribution you clown

  • architecturewithoutclients

    Instigating a Dialogue……………….

  • JimWaveney Netherton

    Please go for this twisty building. Vancouver has so few notable architectural innovations.
    We deserve to no longer be the most boring city in Canada
     We have such a gorgeous setting mountain & bay.
    Please approve this project.
    Thank you
    Waveney Netherton

  • Gord D

    Let me guess. The red dots in the one illustration are suites that Bob Rennie has already sold…Seriously, does anyone know if they are a design feature? I can’t really see them in the other illustrations. ¬†

  • getouttatown

    get the fuck outta town! Do you honestly believe that horse shit?


    face it dude, Vancouver will continue to develop vertically. And what the fuck are you talking about re. the boutiques? What fucking city are you talking about? Vancouver may have a few in gastown, but that’s about it. We know that fuckin place ain’t gettin demolished to make room for towers any time soon. We need to convert a whole shit load of ugly ass street-level shit in the other parts of town before we come even close to having style. Fuck that, the people here are just strange as shit. We need to get over ourselves before we can call this place a great city. We need to remove all that bullshit from Robson, the outdoor mall, and replace it with home-grown shit with substance. Ah substance! That’s the fucking word of the day you empty sheep. That’s exactly what this city needs. And in buckets, too.


  • Steve

    Very interesting! I wonder if the city has looked at this great concept as an addition to the proposal. Great ideas! Well done.

  • Sean586

    Great building! Has the¬†possibility¬†of being a landmark. My concern is I don’t think there should be a mega tower on both sides of the bridge like the Granville Gateway shows. It would look like a wall if there are one on each side and¬†possibly¬†take away from how good this tower looks.

  • Burnaby Mtn Sasquatch

    I’m going to call it the¬†Twisted Honeycomb. :)

  • Ilove8

    I hope Concord Pacific is not getting in  with poor workmanship, no customer service and dishonest management. God save us

  • Anon

    Idiot…shouldn’t be allowed to post.

  • Bbehnia11

    ¬†Racist much “celtic”? That’s all you deserve to get as a reply.

  • Tina D

    I wonder how this one will perform during an earthquake…

  • Sofie Clara Esther

    THIS. WOULD. BE. AMAZING. I have been a Vancouverite my whole life, and I would LOVE this as an addition to my city. :)

  • eturtad


  • sebster

    Another wasteful glass box. Architects use full glass facades as a crutch. It’s easy, and people seem to like it. In terms of energy efficiency,those buildings are typically like hummers.