We have just been on holiday to North Vancouver where we saw these interesting developments. Housing in North Vancouver is traditionally three storey all timber construction with a mixture of single buildings and “Strata”. Many of the wooden buildings are multiple occupancy. Whilst new multi-storey apartments are being built of concrete (a selling point), there is still a lot of wooden building going on (a wooden building lasts 40-50 years before it is replaced)..
All new housing is being built with electric only heating (British Columbia has a high percentage of “green energy”) both to improve the air quality and reduce fire risks. The density of housing in North Vancouver is increasing with many high-rise apartments being built quickly (in the two years since we last visited a number of apartment blocks of 100+ apartments have been built and more are in planning). All seem to have shops/restaurants on the ground floor, then offices/business space with 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments above that.
North Vancouver has introduced a “Green Necklace” of cycling and walking tracks linking together the parks and wild areas in the city (they have occasional bears, frequent skunks and racoons are a constant problem). Community Facilities include sports fields which are used by both young and old and gardens for growing vegetables and plants. These are popular with apartment livers as it gives them access to space to exercise their fingers.