A 3D rendering of River District Community Centre and the environment around it.

River District Community Centre


Vancouver, BC

The future River District Community Centre in southeast Vancouver’s East Fraser Lands development is a watershed project at the nexus of historical, ecological, and urban contexts. Situated along the Fraser River, the site has significance to the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations who have stewarded the land since time immemorial. Over centuries, the riverbank has been a place of salmon fishing for First Nations, farming communities for Chinese settlers, and later, the site of a lumber mill where parallam engineered wood products were first developed. The Fraser River delta has been shaped by erosion and sediment deposition over time, further defining the landscape’s complexion.

Now, it is poised to become a vibrant public space, animated by retail, featuring a City of Vancouver-owned community centre and childcare, designed by hcma in collaboration with space2place, and delivered by Wesgroup Properties. A restaurant and café, also designed by hcma will animate the public realm, while a major public plaza will establish a venue for civic life, performance, gathering, farmers’ markets, and other activations. A major riverfront park will establish a pedestrian and cyclist route, with active and contemplative spaces dotted along the river’s edge.

The community centre and childcare facility is pursuing Passive House certification, LEED Gold certification, and Rick Hansen Accessibility Foundation Gold Certification, as well as targeting a 40% reduction in embodied carbon. Connection to the neighborhood low carbon district energy system is being explored.


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