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Final phase of Vic West's Railyards development re-envisioned once more, from single mid-rise condo to two buildings

A rendering depicting the latest design revision to Le Fevre & Company's final phase of the Railyards community in Victoria's Vic West neighbourhood. The new design, by Stephane Laroye Architect, includes two lowrise buildings (Building 1 at right) comprised of a total of 95 residences. Both will be situated immediately north of the Bay Street Bridge.  Le Fevre & Company

Final phase of Vic West's Railyards development re-envisioned once more, from single mid-rise condo to two buildings
MIKE KOZAKOWSKI, CITIFIED.CA
Developer Le Fevre & Company has submitted a fourth revision to the City of Victoria for what will become the final phase of the Railyards project in the city’s Vic West neighbourhood.
 
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Already spanning nearly two decades of construction, the Railyards’ build-out began in the early 2000s delivering numerous low-rise condominium complexes, several rows of townhomes and a small commercial component on lands formerly used as a railroad industrial site along the banks of the Gorge Waterway.
 
Initial plans for the southern-most un-developed parcel of the Railyards, situated immediately north of the Bay Street Bridge at Tyee Road, date back to 2015 and formerly called for three buildings known collectively as Horizon. Two Horizon buildings were built as a duo of lowrises (see: Horizon 1; Horizon 2), leaving the final building as the project’s end-cap with a unit count of 66 throughout nine levels of concrete construction.
 
In 2018 Le Fevre submitted altered plans for a 79-unit mid-rise also over nine floors, with a significantly altered design. In early 2019 that design was further refined and would include 91-units, albeit with smaller floorplans.
 
As of late 2019 and early 2020 another round of significant changes were submitted and now propose two buildings as part of a single phase of construction, rising to four and six-storeys with 95 micro-unit and one-bedroom residences.
 
The Railyards - Welcome to Vic West
The view from Bay Street and Tyee Road, where a new Welcome to Vic West sign will be incorporated as part of the final phase of Le Fevre & Company's Railyards project.  Le Fevre & Company
 
If approved, the site plan will situate a four-storey building, known as Building 2, on the eastern half of the development site overlooking the Galloping Goose Regional Trail that runs below the Bay Street Bridge and along the eastern perimeter of the Railyards community. 42-units will be situated in Building 2 with layouts ranging from 337 square foot micro-suites to 510 square foot junior one-bedrooms.
 
Building 1, rising to six-storeys along the Tyee Road frontage near the intersection of Bay Street, will encompass 53 homes with micro-suites from 342 square feet to one-bedroom layouts as large as 444 square feet.
 
Project architect Stephane Laroye Architect of Vancouver says visual elements introduced as part of the newest design are an homage to the site’s railroad history and will act as a “beacon” and a “marker” for the Railyards’ community as seen from the bridge and the city beyond.
 
“Coloured vertical fins create a beacon and marker for the Railyards site, and the interior of the vertically glazed stairwells are painted contemporary industrial colours to be beacons at night,” a statement to the City of Victoria prepared by the architectural firm reads. “The colour pattern of the coloured fins represents the pattern of trains sitting in a railyard.”
 
These elements are depicted in the image below.
 
The Railyards' beacon and marker.
A rendering illustrating a beacon and marker for the Railyards project as part of the development's final phase.  Le Fevre & Company
 
In addition to the change from a single building to two, the design now features an expansive rooftop terrace atop Building 2 with a large green roof component. Building 1 includes a smaller rooftop amenity area. An extensively planted courtyard between the two buildings yields privacy for ground oriented homes and access to an interior amenity space.
 
Parking will be in the form of a multi-level underground parkade totalling 113 stalls, 103 for residents’ use and 10 allocated to visitors.
 
Pending municipal approvals, marketing and sales for Panorama could begin as early as this fall along with an in-tandem construction start. Under such a timeline completion would likely follow in 2022.
 
Meanwhile work on Le Fevre's first phase of the Ironworks district in Victoria's northern quarter of Old Town is nearing completion. The five-storey Ironworks building, comprised of 88 homes at Store and Chatham streets, is clad in corten steel panels and is the first building of its kind to rise in the city. C

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