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Construction completed on Canada’s first multi-story distribution center

Warehouses

Construction completed on Canada’s first multi-story distribution center

The Vancouver-area facility addresses high demand for e-commerce.


By Peter Fabris, Contributing Editor | March 29, 2023
Construction completed on Canada’s first multi-story distribution center Photo: Luke Potter Photography
Photo: Luke Potter Photography

Construction was recently completed on Canada’s first major multi-story industrial project, a distribution center in Burnaby, British Columbia. The project provides infrastructure for last-mile delivery in a world where consumers have come to expect next-day and same-day delivery, according to Ware Malcomb, the project's architect of record.

“The Greater Vancouver Area is one of the world’s most land-constrained industrial markets, and demand for industrial space outpaces supply thanks to the rise in e-commerce,” said Frank Di Roma, Principal at Ware Malcomb. “We were pleased to solve considerable logistical and code-related challenges with this new building type and arrive at a design that maximizes industrial floor space.”

Located on a 23.45-acre site, the structure’s 437,000-sf ground floor has 32-foot clear heights. The 270,000-sf second story, accessible to full-size transport trailers via a long service ramp, has 28-foot clear heights and a 130-foot truck court where trucks can circulate. The heated exterior ramp allows for 53-foot trailers to make deliveries.

Assorted mechanical rooms, a leasing office and storage space are located below the ramp. Loading docks are constructed of precast concrete, and the office areas are made of insulated metal panels.

Construction completed on Canada’s first multi-story distribution center, Photo ©Luke Potter
Photo: Luke Potter Photography

The building can provide a single tenant with 707,000 sf of contiguous space. Or, its two floors can be operated and occupied independently and further compartmentalized to accommodate multiple tenants as small as 70,000 sf. Several main entrances allow for flexible parceling of space.

The 65-acre Riverbend Business Park site was formerly home to a paperboard milling operation and a 14-acre landfill. It was purchased by Oxford Properties Group in 2011. Today, buildings on the site comprise more than 1.3 million sf and are LEED certified.

On the building team:
Owner and/or developer: Oxford Properties Group
Design architect: Christopher Bozyk Architects
Architect of record: Ware Malcomb
MEP engineer: Inviro Engineered Systems
Structural engineer: Glotman Simpson Group of Companies
General contractor/construction manager: Ledcor Construction

Construction completed on Canada’s first multi-story distribution center, Photo ©Luke Potter
Photo: Luke Potter Photography

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