Social housing scrapped from latest 105 Keefer Street plan

A revised proposal for 105 Keefer Street in Chinatown is three storeys shorter, and is likely to be constructed.

A contentious, multi-year struggle by Beedie Living to develop an empty lot at 105 Keefer Street in Chinatown continues, with a new development application.

After the developer’s proposal for a 12-storey market condominium and social housing building was rejected by Vancouver city council last month, a revised proposal for a nine-storey building has been submitted.

The rejected 12-storey proposal contained 25 social housing units for seniors, but those units have been eliminated from the new nine-storey plan.

111 market condominiums, a senior’s cultural space and nine ground-floor retail units are planned for the site, over three levels of underground parking.

The project goes to the Urban Design Panel August 9, and an open house is scheduled from 5:00 – 8:00pm on Tuesday, September 5.

Community activists rallied against the proposal, but it’s hard to see it as a victory, as the latest proposal will likely be built, without the social housing units.

Spokesperson Fred Mah said in a statement that this latest version of the proposal was not developed in collaboration with any of the stakeholders who opposed the previous proposal.

“As far as we are aware, none of these individuals or organizations have been contacted by Beedie Living or its representatives since Council’s decision not to approve the rezoning application on June 13, 2017.”

Beedie Living had issued a statement following the submission of the latest version of the proposal for 105 Keefer, saying they were committed to working with the community.

“We see the Keefer project as an important addition to Chinatown,” said Houtan Rafii, vice-president, residential development at Beedie Living. “We have been listening to the concerns people have expressed and sincerely appreciate every stakeholder who has collaborated with us towards the evolution of the proposal. We truly hope that this new proposal will reflect, as much as possible, the diverse perspectives we have heard.”