Evergreen Line contributes to the rejuvination of Burquitlam neighbourhood.


Simon Briault, (THE VANCOUVER SUN) — In the spring of 2017, Pia Penalosa and her boyfriend will move into a brand-new home in Burquitlam.

These first-time buyers are excited by what’s happening in the rapidly expanding community. North Road, which divides Burnaby and Coquitlam and runs through the heart of the new neighbourhood, is flanked by showroom signs for new developments, while construction on the Evergreen Line continues apace.

“It’s the next area that’s really being transformed and that’s exciting,” Penalosa said. “We see so much potential here and we want to see our investment grow, along with the community around it.”

The 26-storey Crown tower, by Beedie Living, will rise across the street from Burquitlam Station, and will become a prominent part of that community.

Penalosa has signed up for an apartment with one-bedroom plus a den.

Two minutes’ walk from her building, the new rapid transit line is scheduled to be up and running by the summer of 2016 and will allow her to get to downtown Vancouver in 28 minutes.

“The location was a big thing for us,” Penalosa said. “My boyfriend’s family lives in Surrey, so we’ll be close to them. Right now I work at Dairy Queen in Port Moody, only a block from the station, so it will be very convenient for me.”

Crown will contain 180 units of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. The building will be set back from the main road and built at an angle to maximize the views from the corner suites, all of which will have three exposures.

Burnaby Mountain, the North Shore mountains and downtown Vancouver are among the highlights.

In an acknowledgment of the influence of company founder Keith Beedie, the fin that forms part of Crown’s architectural design will point directly at the SFU Beedie School of Business.

“There is a lot going for this location,” said Curtis Neeser, director of residential development at Beedie Living. “It’s as if the stars are aligning here, with the completion of the Evergreen Line, the proximity to SFU and the rejuvenation in the community. We don’t know exactly where it will be yet, but the YMCA is planning a new 60,000-square-foot facility in Burquitlam.”

Houtan Rafii, vice-president of residential development at Beedie Living, says the company places a high priority on the quality of its projects, irrespective of what they’re building.

“We focus on livability when it comes to the size, the design and the proportions of the units,” he said. “You find some developments around transit nodes are focused only on investors. Ours are designed with end users in mind. Instead of our amenities and common areas being afterthoughts, we focus just as much on them as we do on the units.”

At Crown, the amenities will include an entertainment room with a kitchen, dining areas and fireside lounge, a games room and a fitness centre. There will also be an outdoor terrace with a barbecue and dining area, outdoor lounge spaces, a children’s play area and a fully furnished guest suite.

Penalosa plans to take full advantage of this last feature.

“I love that there will be a guest suite in the building,” she says. “We only have a one-bedroom unit so we’ll be able to rent it when we have relatives coming from abroad or friends who need to stay the night.”

The units themselves, which range in size from 560 to 1,021 square feet and in price from $282,900 to $508,900, are designed to strike a balance between traditional and contemporary. The mosaic look of the marble backsplashes in the kitchens would not be out of place in an old country house.

The bathrooms have quartzite countertops and porcelain floor tiles, over-height shower doors, marble accented shower niches and custom shelving.

The people at Beedie Living are keen to stress that there will be no hidden extras at Crown. Along with a parking space and storage area, homes include full-sized washer dryers, microwaves and roller shades throughout. The decks have higher than average glass railings and will be completely private.

For Penalosa, who lives with her parents, the sense of privacy and independence is what she’s looking forward to most.

“I can’t wait for us to have our own space,” she said.

Crown by Beedie Living

Project location: 520 Como Lake Ave., Coquitlam
Project size: 180 units; 1- 3-bed apartments, 560 -1,021 sq. ft, $282,900 – $508,900
Developer: Beedie Living
Architect: Chris Dikeakos Architects
Interior designer: Bob’s Your Uncle Design (BYU Design)
Sales centre: #104 – 552 Clarke Rd., Coquitlam, (in Burquitlam Plaza)
Hours: noon – 5 p.m., Sat – Thurs
Telephone: 604-939-8868
Website: www.crownbybeedie.ca
Occupancy: Spring 2017

“We focus on livability when it comes to the size, the design and the proportions of the units.”