Goals of this project
The Olympic Village project's goals align with the City's goals around sustainability, social, and environmental issues.
Canada's first net zero multi-unit residential building
As part of the Olympic Village, the City built Canada's first residential multi-unit Net Zero Building - one that generates as much energy as it uses.
The designers cut energy consumption to a fraction of a conventional building's using solar access and shading, natural cost-ventilation, triple-glazed windows, and excellent insulation.
Energy meters in each suite encourage further reductions by showing residents how much energy they are using and a heat recovery system transfers waste heat from an adjoining grocery store for space heating.
Two rooftop solar installations provide the balance of the building's annual energy. The Net Zero building helped the Southeast False Creek development achieve Platinum certification under LEED for Neighbourhood Development standards in February 2010.
By 2020, the Olympic Village will have 5,000 residential units with a focus on affordable housing.
The buildings used during the 2010 Olympics have become residential housing, with a focus on housing for families. The Olympic Village is a mixed-use community, with about 1,100 residential units - 252 units are affordable housing, and another 100 units are modest market and market housing.
Modest market housing provides housing to residents who are unable to pay market rent - families, persons with disabilities, seniors, and those at risk of homelessness.
The Olympic Village co-op - called Athletes Village - is an 84 unit building made up of market and non-market housing. Find information on co-op housing in the Olympic Village:
Athletes Village co-op housing
Natural ecological habitat
Theman-made island off the west shore of the Village - referred to as Habitat Island is an urban sanctuary along Southeast False Creek.
Deep layers of soil have been added to the area to provide nourishment for new trees to grow.
Boulders and logs commonly found along the coastlines in this region of British Columbia provide a home for plants, small animals, insects, crabs, starfish, barnacles, and other creatures. Surrounded by water at high tide, the island is a sanctuary for birds.
More than 200 native trees, shrubs, flowers, and grasses that grow naturally in the region have been planted on the island and along the waterfront path.
Dogs and cyclists are not allowed on the island in order to preserve the natural state.
Building the island
To build the island, shoreline, and inlet, City staff used 60,000 cubic metres of rock, cobble, gravel, sand, and boulders from the Olympic Village construction.
The ebb and flow of the tide on the rocky shoreline creates a natural home for starfish, crabs, fish, shellfish, and other creatures.
Work leading up to this project
City staff have been planning the Olympic Village development since 2006. Here are some of the key milestones leading up to this project:
- An update on the Olympic Village development was presented to City Council on 6 October 2009 confirming that the Southeast False Creek project is expected to be completed on schedule.
- In February 2009 Mayor Robertson announced that the City has bought out the financing of the Olympic Village project, in order to pursue more competitive financing terms.
- In January 2009 Mayor Robertson announced the creation of the Mayor's Advisory Group on the Olympic Village. The group is comprised of development sector experts and advises the City during the project.
History of the area
The Olympic Village
Built on the last remaining large tract of undeveloped waterfront land near downtown, Southeast False Creek was the site of the Vancouver Olympic Village during the 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic games.
After the 2010 games, the City continued to develop the Olympic Village into a community that would house up to 16,000 people.
False Creek was once the winter home of the people from the Squamish Nation. Before 1860, False Creek was five times its present size - extending north to what is now Pender Street, and east to Clark Drive - and was filled with fish and wildlife.
The first Europeans arrived in 1859. It was an English sea captain named Richardson who named the area False Creek.
Southeast False Creek has played a significant role in Vancouver's history. Many key industries that helped build Vancouver were located on or near the site. this includes sawmills, foundaries, ship builders, railyards, metalworks, and salt distributors.