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Yello on Yates
Uses: rental, commercial
Address: 819 Yates Street
Municipality: Victoria
Region: Downtown Victoria
Storeys: 15
Yello on Yates is a mixed-use rental residential and ground floor commercial tower spanning the 800 blocks of ... (view full profile)
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[Downtown Victoria] Yello on Yates | Rentals; commercial | 15-storeys | Built - completed in 2018

Condo Commercial

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#141 Mike K.

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 08:40 PM

What's the story there?

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#142 MarkoJ

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 08:42 PM

What's the story there?

 

Some sort of plumbing issue.


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#143 Mixed365

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 08:54 PM

 

-the bottom floor is designated for retail; downtown Victoria currently has a 39% vacancy in retail spaces so should we be adding more empty spaces to the mix with such a large vacancy rate? All these empty retail spaces are definitely decreasing the vibrancy of our city.

 

They would not build it if they didn't think they could fill it. It is usually an aspect of their legal contract with the bank to ensure financing.

In my opinion, it is inappropriate for the public to dissuade a development due to what they think the market can and cannot absorb. These people are professionals, they know what they're doing. 


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“To understand cities, we have to deal outright with combinations or mixtures of uses, not separate uses, as the essential phenomena.”
- Jane Jacobs 


#144 wendywelch

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 08:57 PM

Re: Empty retail spaces

Consumers might be getitng what they want elsewhere but empty retail spaces = lack of street vitality. The solution isn't to keep adding more and more retail. We need to figure out how to fill all those empty spaces. Its fine to say they can be filled with other businesses, lawyer, accountants, etc. but its not happeing. Downtown Victoria feels like a ghost town in some areas.



#145 Mike K.

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 09:01 PM

The retail spaces that are vacant are mostly old stock that either require a substantial tenant improvement or are significantly limited in some way. Modern retail is in demand, but businesses are tied to lengthy leases that prohibit them from immediately jumping to a new space that's been made available up the street. New retail can take a little while to fill up as a result.

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#146 Mixed365

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 09:02 PM

Re: Empty retail spaces

Consumers might be getitng what they want elsewhere but empty retail spaces = lack of street vitality. The solution isn't to keep adding more and more retail. We need to figure out how to fill all those empty spaces. Its fine to say they can be filled with other businesses, lawyer, accountants, etc. but its not happeing. Downtown Victoria feels like a ghost town in some areas.

 

The amount of empty spaces, especially in some areas, is definitely alarming. Maybe we need more rental towers downtown, since, you know, the rental vacancy sits at ~1.5%. 

Would you be okay with this development having ground floor commercial if you knew they were all already occupied? 


“To understand cities, we have to deal outright with combinations or mixtures of uses, not separate uses, as the essential phenomena.”
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#147 Mike K.

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Posted 14 June 2015 - 09:08 PM

This project will have two retail spaces splitting 6,600 square feet.

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#148 wendywelch

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 07:35 AM

They would not build it if they didn't think they could fill it. It is usually an aspect of their legal contract with the bank to ensure financing.

In my opinion, it is inappropriate for the public to dissuade a development due to what they think the market can and cannot absorb. These people are professionals, they know what they're doing. 

I am sorry to see that you deem expressing an opinion as being "inappropriate". The developers of Victoria are very lucky to have such a strong advocacy group.



#149 D.L.

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 07:49 AM

Is is possible that the 100 or so housing units that this building is adding to downtown will create demand for 6,600 sqft of retail space?



#150 Mike K.

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 08:24 AM

I am sorry to see that you deem expressing an opinion as being "inappropriate". The developers of Victoria are very lucky to have such a strong advocacy group.


A lot of research goes into development. It's not a shoot in the dark type of industry. Sometimes mistakes are made, but with a saavy developer like Chard every move is calculated.

Downtown Victoria is full of low grade retail space and retailers want other options. High vacancy is a symptom of social policies, building conditions, operating costs and demand for services. We can't expect the city to forego retail spaces only because some others are vacant. (and it's nowhere near 39%, that would mean nearly every second storefront is sitting empty - at worst we're at 10%).

The two spaces in this building will be absorbed and everything will be fine. Two years after this building is finished everyone will think it's always been there.
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#151 lanforod

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 08:53 AM

Yeah, I don't see the big deal. Its two spaces, of good size, not 20 tiny ones. Part of the reason some areas have a lot of vacant retail is due to the high rents in those areas too.


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#152 jklymak

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 09:21 AM

I disagree that the city should have no say in where commercial goes.  They are in the business of zoning, after all, and what is good for an individual developer is not necessarily good for the city as a whole.  

 

I also think this fat scraper does not belong here.  This block and the one to the south are already packed with buildings.  Having a big building almost up to the lot lines in all directions is not good city planning particularly here.  What will go into the Capitol 6 lot?  I hope this proposal has no windows on the west side.  Or do we think that tall buildings separated by the minimum setback is OK?  


Edited by jklymak, 15 June 2015 - 09:35 AM.

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#153 sebberry

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 09:30 AM

I think two towers of different heights, rotated 45 degrees with the smaller tower on View St. would have been better here.  You'd probably get better street-level interaction, possibly more space for retail and less of a bulky design.  And who knows, maybe it'll work better with what's to come at Capitol 6?

 

I really don't like the "fatscraper" idea.


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#154 aastra

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 09:36 AM

 

What will go into the Capitol 6 lot?

 

It seems like it will have to be something long and fairly short, very similar to the existing theatre building but maybe a bit taller. But anyway, doesn't the zone of deference around the cathedral also dictate this format? It's not as if a tower would ever have been allowed on the corner of Blanshard and View.



#155 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 09:44 AM

I am sorry to see that you deem expressing an opinion as being "inappropriate". The developers of Victoria are very lucky to have such a strong advocacy group.

 

No no your opinion is very valid here.   The author of the post just does not think that the city or politicians ought to be swayed in their decision-making by their opinion on markets.


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#156 Mike K.

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 10:02 AM

I disagree that the city should have no say in where commercial goes.  They are in the business of zoning, after all, and what is good for an individual developer is not necessarily good for the city as a whole.  

 

I also think this fat scraper does not belong here.  This block and the one to the south are already packed with buildings.  Having a big building almost up to the lot lines in all directions is not good city planning particularly here.  What will go into the Capitol 6 lot?  I hope this proposal has no windows on the west side.  Or do we think that tall buildings separated by the minimum setback is OK?  

 

Unfortunately that whole block is a symptom of antiquated development requirements and restrictions. You'd never see so many buildings clustered so closely together in Vancouver above their podiums, but here the planners don't seem to mind very close proximity between residential buildings, and quite frankly that's not ok. The difference in proximity between residential buildings in Victoria and Vancouver is very pronounced. I mean in some cases we actually have zero separation between buildings, none. And this is how we're still building (819 Yates will be on that parking lot).

 

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#157 Nparker

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 10:13 AM

Simple remedy: build taller thinner towers. If developers weren't forced to squeeze every square mm possible out the few floors of height our city has dictated, we'd end up with a better overall design for residential towers in the downtown core.


Edited by Nparker, 15 June 2015 - 10:15 AM.

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#158 Mixed365

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 01:12 PM

No no your opinion is very valid here.   The author of the post just does not think that the city or politicians ought to be swayed in their decision-making by their opinion on markets.

As the author, this is correct. I don't think politicians thoughts or expertise of where the think the market is going should influence a decision making process. There are too many factors. Leave it to the professionals. 


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- Jane Jacobs 


#159 Mixed365

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 01:26 PM

The problems I have with this project are:

 

-the architectural design is fairly boring and out-of-date, a big wide rectangle similar to the kind of apartment buildilngs they built in the 1970s

 

-the building is too large for the given space and neighbouring buildings

 

-the building fills the entire lot giving no empty space for tenants or pedestrians (there is a walkway but it will only be opened to public from 9am-5pm)

 

-the bottom floor is designated for retail; downtown Victoria currently has a 39% vacancy in retail spaces so should we be adding more empty spaces to the mix with such a large vacancy rate? All these empty retail spaces are definitely decreasing the vibrancy of our city.

 

-while the building is fulfilling a much needed type of residency (rentals), there is a caveat in the plans indicating it only needs to contain rental units for ten years; what happens after ten years? Will tenants get evicted? I would be relunctant to move into a buildilng that is only deemed rentals for a short time period. This seems like a short-term solution to our lack of rental spaces problem.

 

I understand that most people on Vibrant Victoria are very pro-density and pro-highrise, which is fine but my argument is that if we have to have highrises, can't they be examples of great innovative architecture? Can't they take into consideration the surrounding area and street level activity? Why do they have to be revved up, colour-added, versions of 1970s apartment complexes?

-

 

This is the type of fear mongering I don't like. Here is an exert from Colliers Q4 retail market report. It states downtown is at about 10.2%, not 39%.

More information can be found here:

www.collierscanada.com/en/commercial-property-research

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“To understand cities, we have to deal outright with combinations or mixtures of uses, not separate uses, as the essential phenomena.”
- Jane Jacobs 


#160 wendywelch

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 09:23 PM

A lot of research goes into development. It's not a shoot in the dark type of industry. Sometimes mistakes are made, but with a saavy developer like Chard every move is calculated.

Downtown Victoria is full of low grade retail space and retailers want other options. High vacancy is a symptom of social policies, building conditions, operating costs and demand for services. We can't expect the city to forego retail spaces only because some others are vacant. (and it's nowhere near 39%, that would mean nearly every second storefront is sitting empty - at worst we're at 10%).

The two spaces in this building will be absorbed and everything will be fine. Two years after this building is finished everyone will think it's always been there.

The 39% vacancy stat comes from the owner of Price's Alarms and they make a concerted effort to keep track of these stats as their business depends on the amount of businesses that are in operation in Victoria. I've heard that stat from several other businesses. You are dreaming if you think its 10%. Have you been downtown lately?

Any ways I don't think we should forego all new retail spaces. I was interested in the other post that mentions that there is a need for new retail spaces because people don't want to rent old ones. Maybe this is true. I just put the stat out there as one of my critiques of the project.

I'm curious why nobody is talking about the fact the building is only designated "rental" for ten years. That to me is one of the biggest problems with the project.



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