September 24, 2012
U.S. department store plans major renovation for downtown Vancouver
American retailer Nordstrom has announced it will occupy 230,000 square feet of space on three floors in downtown Vancouver, B.C.
Plans were unveiled on Sept. 19 by realtor and developer Cadillac Fairview for the redevelopment of the unpopular Sears building at the corner of Robson and Granville streets in Pacific Centre Mall.
Originally built in the 1970s, the dated, windowless architecture of the building has long been an anomaly in Vancouver’s downtown shopping and business district.
The building’s shell will remain, but the window-less white exterior will be re-clad in glass.
The redevelopment project will include 48,000 square foot of multi-tenant retail space on the lower mall level, and the top four levels of the building will be converted to 280,000 square feet of office space.
The office space will be comprised of four 70,000 square foot floor plates with 17-foot ceilings, slab to slab, and will have two atriums and a landscaped roof-top amenity.
“These plans reinforce Pacific Centre’s reputation as downtown Vancouver’s pre-eminent mixed-use property. Pacific Centre will span from Pender Street all the way to our new entrance on the corner of Robson and Granville,” said Cadillac Fairview senior vice president and portfolio manager Tom Knoepfel.
“This will be a key factor in the centre’s continued success.”
The project is aiming for LEED certification under the LEED: Core and Shell program.
The project has been designed by James K. M. Cheng and the contractor is the Ledcor Group.
Callison will serve as the architect for the Nordstrom space and is consulting with James K. M. Cheng as part of the project design process.
Cheng is known for designing previous high-profile projects in Vancouver, including the Shangri-La and the Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel.
New retail stores on the lower level are estimated to open in 2014, with Nordstrom and the office space to open in 2015.
Sears is scheduled to leave the building by the end of October.
The building was originally built in 1973 to house Eaton’s flagship department store, and was designed by Argentine-American architect Cesar Pelli, who also designed the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia.
The structure has long been regarded as uninviting and an eyesore due to the lack of windows and its dated appearance amongst the many modern glass buildings that have sprung up around it in downtown Vancouver.
Construction is scheduled to begin in November and will take 18 to 24 months to complete.
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