Up The Street & Down Memory Lane - Part 5

I love my apartment.
Hycroft Towers (not to be confused with Fawlty Towers - I WISH!) has a lot going for it. It is comparatively large, has a great layout and excellent original features. Plus the building itself is an architectural landmark. 

  "Children will be permitted on a case basis."

 "Children will be permitted on a case basis."

Built in 1952 by Vancouver Architects Semmens and Simpson, Hycroft Towers was advertised as the largest apartment building in Canada. 

The building was particularly impressive for a few reasons:

One of which was the land it was going to be built on. Apparently the grade between Marpole Ave. (often mistaken for 16th Ave.) north to 15th is quite the topographic challenge, a challenge everyone was eager to see conquered - and conquered it was. With this steep grade, the large triangular lot (originally belonging to Hycroft Manor and acting as the estate's vegetable garden - more like small farm) ended up affording many of the building's tenants large unobstructed views of the city, mountains and water.

Secondly and maybe most notably, Hycroft Towers has all the earmarks of the “International Style” of Architecture (read: Modern) and is a direct reference to pioneer Modernist; Le Corbusier’s “5 Points of Architecture”. 

  • Pilotis
  • Free ground plan
  • Free façade 
  • Elongated windows
  • Roof garden (that's right, you heard me)

Boyfriend (see previous article) says . . . and I quote: "Darling, we live in Unité d'Habitation." After doing some research - I say hopefully one day we'll live in Villa Savoye.

  Photo © 2013  Helena McMurdo 

 Photo © 2013 Helena McMurdo 

Third - the aforementioned rooftop garden. A communal outdoor space sits happily on top of the north wing of the building. Residents can view this 360 degree panorama (arguably the best in the city) 365 days (and nights) of the year. Tables, umbrellas plants and chaises pepper the rooftop to maximize resident's enjoyment.  

In Hycroft Tower's case, size and luxury really did matter. The building boasts large well thought out floor plans (see below: inclusion of grand piano in interior drawings), massive expanses of window and back in "the day" a full service garage (the price of fuel being included in monthly fees).

Hycroft Towers-floor plans.jpg

Having lived in Hycroft for three and a half years, I can attest to the view, the quiet concrete living and everything that made it special in the early 50's. It has a timeless design (inside and out) and stands head and shoulders above its condo competitors throughout the city.

Mine is a love affair with Hycroft. I have become more than attached to its history, my future and our years together.


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