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An aging, three-storey 22-unit residential building at 124 West 20th Street in North Vancouver could be razed to make way for a wood-frame apartment complex.

The proposed development by Crystal Apartments consists of a six-storey wood-frame building housing 57 units, of which 10 percent would be rented at below market rates.

“The new purpose-built rental housing project will provide 35 additional rental units to the much needed rental housing stock in North Vancouver,” reads the design rationale. “Upon completion, 90 percent of these units will be rented at market rates and will provide an attractive and financially viable option for housing to those who are unable to bear the high cost of condominium ownership in today’s real estate market.”

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The site has public transit close by, with the TransLink route 240 bus stop just 650 metres away, offering convenient access to downtown Vancouver. The Lonsdale Quay SeaBus is also nearby, with ferry services across Vancouver Harbour, while the Trans Canada Highway is a few minutes north of the site, providing quick access to Burnaby and beyond.

The neighbourhood is primarily residential with surrounding buildings consisting of two- or three-storey townhouses and low-rise apartments. However, the property is within walking distance to the Lonsdale Avenue retail strip, which is lined with shops, services and amenities.

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Designed by RLA Architects, the wood-frame structure would be built over a one-and-a-half-storey underground parking garage, accessed from the rear lane on the northwest corner of the site. The garage would house 52 resident parking spaces, six visitor spots and 94 bicycle stalls.

The design of the building would integrate several repetitive elements into the massing to break down its overall scale, while a simple palette of neutral colours and materials would provide a clean and contemporary aesthetic. White composite panels clad the main building façade and are paired with contrasting natural wood siding and dark brick on lower levels.

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Inside, the unit breakdown consists of five studios, 23 one-bedroom, 22 two-bedroom and seven three-bedroom layouts. While details on amenities haven’t been revealed, the project floorplate does show two amenity spaces located off the main lobby.

In the neighbourhood, Millennium Central Lonsdale is in the preconstruction phase and accepting registrations, while Harmony on Eighth is under construction.

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