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Ambleside : better living by the water Hendrigan, Cole Evan 2006

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Ambleside: Be�er Living By The Water An in-fill Transit Oriented Development in West Vancouver, B.C. by  Cole Evan Hendrigan B.A. (History of Art) University of Victoria  A thesis submi�ed in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Landscape Architecture in  The Faculty of Graduate Studies  The University of British Columbia October, 2006  © Cole Evan Hendrigan, 2006  Abstract The Ambleside waterfront, District of West Vancouver, has the potential to act as the armature for a water-borne transit link from this established neighbourhood to the Central Business District (C.B.D.) of Vancouver. By in-filling the under-used spaces and redeveloping several existing sites, the optimum employment of this historically ferryserviced waterfront may once again come to the fore. As every transit trip begins with a pedestrian event, a key component of this project is re-establishing and enhancing the pedestrian connections through the commercial/ residential centre and along the linear shore park. Using, and studying how, the principles of Transit Oriented Development (T.O.D.) fit in the Ambleside context is also central to this project. In the design careful a�ention will be made to the comfort and safety of the pedestrian realm by resolving conflicts between a transportation system and the retaining of the special character of Ambleside. The transit facilities will be appropriate to the site and sufficient in scale to accommodate the passenger loads. Care will be also be made towards the enhancement of the site’s ecological functioning. This project is about the planning and design for more livable and complete communities. The results of policy review and site analysis will be elaborated through design. It is hoped that the finding will be applicable to similar transit nodes and waterfronts.  ii  Table Of Contents Abstract:....................................................................................................................................... Table of Contents......................................................................................................................... List ofTables................................................................................................................................ List of Figures..............................................................................................................................  ii iii iii iv  1 Introduction: 1.1Why Transportation byWater?.................................................................................. 2 1.2 Waterfronts Contrasted............................................................................................ 5 2 Ambleside’s Background: 2.1 Ambleside’s Transportation History...................................................................... 14 2.2 Who lives in Ambleside?......................................................................................... 15 2.3 Contemporary Issues................................................................................................ 17 2.4 Site Analysis .............................................................................................................. 20 3 Transit Oriented Development Design Guidlines: 3.1 Transit Facilities......................................................................................................... 38 3.2 Pedestrian Realm...................................................................................................... 38 3.3 Mixed Use Zoning.................................................................................................... 38 3.4 Placemaking............................................................................................................... 39 3.5 Ecology and Parks.................................................................................................... 40 3.6 Diagrams................................................................................................................... 41 4 Ambleside Design: Program............................................................................................................................ 51 Scale 1:1500...................................................................................................................... 53 Scale 1:500........................................................................................................................ 54 Scale 1:200........................................................................................................................ 58 Cross Sections.................................................................................................................. 60 Visualizations................................................................................................................ 64 Details............................................................................................................................... 67 5 Conclusion................................................................................................................................ 70 6 Bibliography:............................................................................................................................ 72 Appendix 1: Methodology........................................................................................................ 75 Appendix 2:Existing & Guiding Policy.................................................................................... 79  iii  List Of Tables Table 1: The Beneficiaries of Value in Good Urban Design...................................................86  iv  List Of Figures Figure 1: The Tswwassen Ferry Terminal of B.C. Ferries. .....................................................................4 Figure 2: Waterfront Station: Vancouver B.C. Canada ...........................................................................6 Figure 3: Lonsdale Quay: North Vancouver, B.C. Canada ....................................................................7 Figure 4: Horseshoe Bay, West Vancouver, B.C. Canada .......................................................................8 Figure 5: Oakland Alameda: San Francisco Bay, California USA........................................................ 9 Figure 6: Oakland Alameda: San Francisco Bay, California USA ..................................................... 10 Figure 7: Circular Quay: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia .........................................................11 Figure 8: Ba�ery Park: New York City, New York USA.......................................................................12 Figure 9 : Ambleside: West Vancouver, B.C. Canada ...........................................................................13 Figure 10: West Vancouver’s Population Distribution ........................................................................ 16 Figure 11: Locator Map of Ambleside ....................................................................................................18 Figure 12: West Vancouver’s Ferry Service............................................................................................ 19 Figure 13: West Vancouver’s Ferry Service ............................................................................................19 Figure 14: Ambleside Co�ages, 1918 ....................................................................................................19 Figure15: Historic Images Of Ambleside ...............................................................................................20 Figure 16 : Historic Images Of Ambleside .............................................................................................20 Figure 17: Historic Images Of Ambleside ..............................................................................................20 Figure 18: Ambleside’s Opportunities.................................................................................................... 21 Figure 19: Ambleside’s Beneficial A�ributes .........................................................................................22 Figure 20: Environmental Considerations .............................................................................................23 Figure 21: Ambleside Movement ............................................................................................................24 Figure 22: Ambleside in an aerial Perspective.......................................................................................25 Figure 23: Ambleside’s Built Form .........................................................................................................25 Figure 24: Major Spaces in Ambleside. ..................................................................................................26 Figure 25: Ambleside’s Green and Grey Network. ..............................................................................26 Figure 26: Ambleside’s Topography. ......................................................................................................26 Figure 27: Ambleside Figure Ground.....................................................................................................27 Figure 28: Figure Ground by Zoning .....................................................................................................27 Figure 29: Amenities and Services available in Ambleside. ...............................................................27 Figure 30 View of Boat Launch ...............................................................................................................28 Figure 31 View from Marine Drive to Water......................................................................................... 28 Figure 32 Store fronts along Marine Drive ............................................................................................28 Figure 33: Ambleside’s View Corridors.................................................................................................29 Figure 34: Ambleside’s View Corridors. ...............................................................................................29 Figure 35: What Will Keep Ambleside Great? ......................................................................................30 Figure 36: Ambleside SWOT diagram ...................................................................................................31 Figure 37: Diverse and Desirable Places to Live .................................................................................. 32 Figure 38: Questions and Statements Resulting from the Analysis ..................................................33 Figure 39: Conceptual Resolution of Questions ...................................................................................34 Figure 40: Park Connection ......................................................................................................................40 Figure 41: Transit Oriented Development Diagram for Ambleside ..................................................41 Figure 42: Ambleside Building Scale Guideline ...................................................................................41 Figure 43: Transit Facility Guidelines ....................................................................................................42 Figure 44: Transit Facility Solar Orientation .........................................................................................42  v  Figure 45: Alleyway Guidlelines .............................................................................................................43 Figure 46: Street Guidelines .....................................................................................................................43 Figure47: Sidewalk Guidelines ..............................................................................................................44 Figure 48: Landmark and Vista Guidelines ..........................................................................................44 Figure 49: Human Scale ...........................................................................................................................45 Figure 50 :Curb Extensions ......................................................................................................................45 Figure 51: Crenelated Building Fronts ...................................................................................................46 Figure 52: Roof Top Uses .........................................................................................................................46 Figure 53: Stairs on the Outside ..............................................................................................................46 Figure 54: Public Plaza .............................................................................................................................46 Figure 55: Intimate Street .........................................................................................................................46 Figure 56: North Face of the Building ....................................................................................................46 Figure 57: North East Site .......................................................................................................................47 Figure 58: Transit facility/ Ferry Terminal Siting ..................................................................................48 Figure 59: Argyle Avenue Upgrade and Greening ...............................................................................49 Figure 60: Ambleside Park Connector ...................................................................................................50 Figure 61: Design Diagram ......................................................................................................................51 Figure 62: Ambleside in Isometric View ................................................................................................52 Figure 63: Overall Site Scale 1:1500 ........................................................................................................53 Figure 64: Transit Station Scale 1:500 .....................................................................................................54 Figure 65: Wharf Scale 1:500 ...................................................................................................................55 Figure 66: Argyle & Bellevue Street Improvements Scale 1:500 ........................................................56 Figure 67: 14th Street Improvement Scale 1:500................................................................................... 57 Figure 68: Transit Station Beach Side 1:200 ...........................................................................................58 Figure 69: 14th Street & Alley Scale 1:200 ..............................................................................................59 Figure 70: Cross Section Along 14th .......................................................................................................60 Figure 71: Cross Section Across Argyle bus loop, Railway & Bellevue Street .................................60 Figure 72: Cross Section from Transit Station to Bellevue..................................................................61 Figure 73: Cross Section along Bellevue ................................................................................................61 Figure 74: Cross Section from Bellevue to Water .................................................................................62 Figure 75: Cross Section from Bellevue to Argyle over Rail Line ......................................................62 Figure 76: Cross Section from Bellevue to Argyle over Rail Line ......................................................62 Figure 77: Section of Wharf showing Accessible Elevator....................................................................63 Figure 78: Section of Wharf showing effects of Tides on Relative Elevation ...................................63 Figure 79:Visualization from foot of 14th looking North ....................................................................64 Figure 80: Visualization of new bus loop on Argyle.............................................................................64 Figure 81: Visualization of Bus Loop .....................................................................................................65 Figure 82: Visualization from beach looking North .............................................................................65 Figure 83: Visualization of Transit Station in Context .........................................................................66 Figure 84: Visualization Rail Crossing on 15th .....................................................................................66 Figure 85: Boardwalk................................................................................................................................67 Figure 86: Transparency and Orientation...............................................................................................68 Figure 87: Details .......................................................................................................................................69  vi  Ambleside: Better Living By The Water.  How a regional transit initiative could have a postive impact on the livability at Ambleside, West Vancouver, British Columbia Cole Evan Hendrigan Masters of Landscape Architecture Graduation Project University of British Columbia May 2006  1  1. Introduction 1.1 Why Transportation By Water? Water bisects the Vancouver region in multiple ways. This fact of geography creates several challenges regarding the provisioning of transportation to the growing and densifying centres throughout the region. The spanning of the water with bridges to achieve this service is limited to select places, is very expensive and controversial to build. However, this fact of geography also creates opportunities to expand the transit services to include passenger ferries operating on these, otherwise, divisive water corridors. (See Appendix 2.2 & Appendix 2.7) A network of ferries will reunite the divided waterfronts of the Burrard Inlet basin. Many of the historic waterfronts of the Vancouver region are now accessed and dominated by the automobile through design, an act which destroys the genius of the location and serves to a further dispersed se�lement pa�ern. These proposed passenger ferries will act as a catalyst to encourage the use of public transit while at the same time reinvigorate the local economy and social network. Careful a�ention to livability factors including mixed use land zoning and a�ention to alternative transportation connections would be paramount at each node within this network. This graduation projects sets out to examine how one particular waterfront, Ambleside in the district of West Vancouver, may act as the armature for water-borne transit linking the historically ferry serviced waterfront (See Chapter 2) of Ambleside to the Central Business District (C.B.D.) of Vancouver and how this may positively affect land use pa�erns of this neighbourhood. Ambleside has the potential to be an excellent example of an in-fill Transit Oriented Development and provide for a pa�ern of living life be�er, with more options, close by the water. To elaborate the character of Transit Oriented Development as an option creating alternative to what is a more common design, the sca�ered automobile oriented suburb, it is important to: “Imagine a region made up of a network of great neighbourhoods- places where residents of diverse incomes, ages, and backgrounds have the option to walk to nearby shopping, parks and schools; where streets are safe to walk along and public spaces are beautiful, inviting, and frequented; and where people can choose to take a train or bus to their destination as easily and conveniently as a car. Imagine, as well, a region where job centres are convenient for employees around the clock, where they can easily take care of errands during lunch, catch a movie a�er work, or even bike to the office. These job centres, even those located in suburbia, are linked to a network of neighbourhoods and a revitalized downtown by high-quality, efficient transit. “(Di�mar & Poticha,p.22)  2  The concept of this other pa�ern of living is not constructed from a template. Rather care must be taken to create places which fit into their cultural and physical spaces and offer an option, and alternative, to the automobile dominated way of living. The types of uses located within TOD must be carefully matched with the function of the place and with the needs and desires of residents, workers, and visitors. Indeed, place making may be as important a factor in the success of TOD as access to transit. (Di�mar & Poticha,p.22) Although appropriate physical qualities (e.g., density, distance, and urban form) are essential to make TOD work, a focus solely on these characteristics can obscure the main goal of transit-oriented development, which is not to create a particular physical form but rather to create places that function differently from conventional development. (Di�mar & Poticha, p.22) Transit-Oriented Development is about transit, yes, but it is equally about people and the places they choose to occupy. It is a repeatable model in which an intensification of land uses are organized around transportation services to create a more pleasing, diversified, urban environment. So, why is a water-borne transit service required for Ambleside? First, water beguiles most humans in most places and Ambleside is no exception. Being close to the water is desirable. Why not then use the strength of this pull towards civic improvements in transportation? We can use these magnetic properties of the waterfront to create a place for meeting, shopping and selling and, in short, recreating the heart of Ambleside. Those who live in Ambleside love the proximity of water, yet the current urban fabric denies true experiential access to the water. Though the public walkways along the waterfront are the civic spaces (such as squares and plazas of Europe or Latin America) here in Vancouver the orientation is out to: The Cult of The View…(which) has been a powerful imperative in the creation of a distinct typology of public space in the city (of Vancouver): Public Platforms for contemplation of the Natural Tableau. (Berolowitz 2005. p. 161.) While the “Natural Tableau” is indeed a large part of the quality of life in West Vancouver, there is a unnamed desire not fulfilled. It is a desire to be out directly on the water, a desire to be on the water for the effect of being afloat as well as to simply see from a distance where it is one lives. All is not lost though, for aboard one of the ferries which traverse the Straits of Georgia there is found a discernible sensation of knowing exactly where one is within this region and of being at “the centre of the world” (Eliade, 1957 p. 36). Being on one of these ferries gives this missing sensation of being brought over a threshold, through to the other side, arriving with a profound knowing of ones place on this earth. (See Figure 1, page 4) 3  Th  e  Pr  oc  es  si  on  al  le The Vestibu  Outer Sanctum Inner Sanctum or Naos The WaterThe Larger Than Self Realm Figure 1: The Tswwassen Ferry Terminal of B.C. Ferries. Literally, a great procession from Vancouver occurs as all ferry-bound traffic emerges from the Fraser River delta’s urbanity onto a je�y stretched over the water. All busy-ness is suspended as one participates in a definable apprehensive ceremony of waiting and seeing others who are also waiting. There is the act of boarding the ferry, one a�er another, being directed by the smaller workers to ones non-hierarchical position and the feeling of being in the presence of something so much larger than yourself arrives; it is the water. The water is all present, surrounding, enveloping, flowing from one side of the earth to the other. Figuratively, the ferry is as vessel moving us into the presence of a god, and the simply ordered engineered facts of the ferry terminal is as a temple to this god named: Water. An overwhelming sensation of being somewhere distinctly ‘other’, of having traversed a threshold takes hold of the traveller. A transformation of self by changing positions in the world happens. A great sense of where we are is now possible, a realization that the genius of this place is to be found close by the water. Here this ferry terminal is re-imagined and described as an ancient Greek temple such as the Parthenon on the Acropolis in Athens, Greece.  4  Second, a relatively small investment of infrastructure beside the water will further help achieve the regions transportation goals. A few boats and improved docking structures will suffice. This compares quite well to the costs of bridges and highways and when the social and economic ramifications of strengthening our existing communities, such as Ambleside, with increased options are added, the positive ledger fills quite rapidly,. The heart of any organism must be healthy, and to this end a healthier community is possible if designed to be such from the centre. A passenger ferry transit service with excellent pedestrian access to the waterfront, with corresponding commercial components for residents and commuters alike is possible . Planned to be a dynamic, mixed-use area Ambleside may serve as an example for other municipalities currently trying to reinvigorate their waterfront or historic commercial centre. The third reason for the necessity of a new mode of transportation based on the water is simply the gridlock and congestion experienced daily in Vancouver. While West Vancouver is growing slowly in population, North Vancouver, Squamish and Whistler are growing at a much faster pace. The transportation system serving the North Shore communities and the Sea to Sky corridor must be comprehensively imagined with forms other than the private motor vehicle. As one of the greatest commonalities linking all these communities is certainly the water it makes sense that at the waterfronts where a common solution may be found to the trnaportation network.  1.2 Waterfronts Contrasted In comparing several distinctly different waterfronts which do currently serve as transportation hubs for intricate urban environments is the next step in this discussion. The following comparisons (starting on page 5) demonstrate how this mixing of services and amenities can together be a powerful force, with as emphasis on the pedestrian realm, in creating livable and sustainable communities. While in many examples the scale of the development is not in keeping with the character of Ambleside, they are very instructive as to the efficacy of transit as a formative influence and the role transit planning can play in many downtown waterfronts around the world. (See Figures 2- 9, page 5-12) Lessons from these comparisons are instructive, both from a planning standpoint as much as a design standpoint. In planning, the necessity to mix the zoning becomes clear while designing for the experience of inhabitable authentic spaces also become clear, hopefully, from these chosen examples. Within the context of Ambleside proper, originally sprung from the decks of boats, the same sensation of self-knowledge may once again become a part of living there. Not only will a ferry service help ’capture’ passengers to the transit system and reduce our collective reliance on automobiles, but it will become part of what it means to be living in a way much more in tune with the se�ing of West Vancouver. A pedestrian-friendly mixed-use neighbourhood is the vision, water transit will be the means. That is why water transportation should and could become once again a very important part of what it means to be in West Vancouver, nestled on the shore of the wide Pacific Ocean.  5  Commercial/ Residential  Ro a  d  Terminal  Waterfront Station  Ma  jor  Water  N  Park  Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000  Figure 2: Waterfront Station: Vancouver B.C. Canada  Separated from the water by the rail yards, the old Canadian Pacific terminal which used to welcome steamers from Hong Kong, Calcu�a and Sydney now serves as a fairly important transit hub for bus, SkyTrain and SeaBus. While entering the building is still a grand affair, unfortunately once one has transited through the main salon one is ushered into a hermetically sealed fly-over ramp down to the sea. Once within the ferry terminal proper one is even further desensitized to the fact of where one is and what is happening. It is cold and scientific in its perfect sterilization of an, otherwise, wonderful experience of being by the water. The passenger on the SeaBus is very safe within its glass bo�le-like compartment. How unlike the experience of having to feel the change in temperature from city to water air, hear the seagulls, step over a broken mussel shell and to smell the salt water as one might. There is nothing le� to chance in this terminal, everything is provided for, except an authentic experience of going down to the water’s edge.  6  Park Terminal  Water  Ma  jor  Hi  N  gh wa y  Commercial/ Residential  Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 3: Lonsdale Quay: North Vancouver, B.C. Canada At first glance this is a very appropriate typology of a successful Transit Oriented Development. There are other transit options including bike, pedestrian, taxi and bus; there are a wide array of shops, travel services including a bar and a hotel, and there is even a performance space with a water feature. There are public spaces and private spaces but all with clear sight lines. However, there is something very ‘theme park’ about the entire design vocabulary and its ‘fit’ and ‘connection’ to the rest of North Vancouver is weak. Instead of being joined into the fabric it overtakes the waterfront and sets itself off from the rest of the city-scape surrounding it. The transit bus station is a dark, moist and breathless cave of an underground superstructure which while keeping the pedestrian dry it does li�le to offer much comfort.  7  Terminal Commercial/ Residential  Ma  jor Hig hw ay  Water  Park  N Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 4: Horseshoe Bay, West Vancouver, B.C. Canada Though there are ongoing issues related to the scale of the boats, the number of necessary parking places, and the size of the transportation infrastructure on this otherwise idyllic place within West Vancouver, one may still exit the ferry terminal proper to enter into what is a sea-side village. The orientation is to the swimmable sea and the shore is largely open to be walked beside. There are also plenty of restaurants and a wide variety of shops. This, however, is largely due to historical factors and it is very hard to separate what the village may have been without the large B.C. Ferries terminal. As was compromised with much controversy in the 1950’s, parkland occupies the centre of the bay and the ferry terminal is restricted to one side as it was developed from a small vacation outpost to an extension of Vancouver. Pictured in inset at top is a view of Horseshoe Bay in the 1920’s, and the lower inset is of the building the large ferry terminal which exists there now.  8  Ma wa jor Hi y gh -  Naval Base  Commercial/ Residential  Te rm i  na  l  Park  Water  N Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 5: Oakland Alameda: San Francisco Bay, California USA Here we see the enormous size of a aircra� carrier and the marshalling yards on the le� hand side of this image. There is a large commercial aspect in this area. While it appears that the waterfront has a marina and park space connected to this area, they seems quite small. The ferry terminal, in purple, is equally small but seemingly well placed to capture the local business and commuting traffic as well as the enormous volume of pedestrian traffic when all the sailors of one of these aircra� carriers are on shore leave.  9  No Commercial, only Residential Terminal (a park and ride)  Water  Park  N Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 6: Oakland Alameda: San Francisco Bay, California USA This on the other hand, as one may see, is a park-and-ride type of situation surrounded unremittingly by single family residences and le� over high water table park land. This is the antithesis of what a Transit Oriented Development should look like. Note the lack of complexity, the lack of diversity, apparent even in the colour scheme.  10  Water  Opera House  Terminal  Commercial/ Residential  Park  N Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 7: Circular Quay: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia There exists a very dramatic and complex interweaving of commerce, residential, highway, park and world class cultural facility all within close proximity to this ferry terminal. Within the transit precinct itself there are buses going to every part of Sydney, trains going to other parts of Australia, taxis and bicycle stands. This is all in addition to the wide variety of other destinations achievable via other ferries to other destinations within Sydney from this point. The whole is a well integrated system which the tourist and the commuter alike may comprehend the character, size and scope of Sydney from the water.  11  Major Highway  Commercial/ Residential  Water  Terminal Park  N Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 8: Ba�ery Park: New York City, New York USA At the base of Manha�an is Ba�ery Park where a ferry terminal operates servicing the population of commuters streaming into New York City every day from New Jersey. This park and terminal serve as a transition point, not only for coming and going, but also emerging from the vastness of Manha�an to then be in the presence of the ocean. One of the few places where one can access the water within Manha�an, this park serves a great role in providing meaning and awareness of a unique urban experience. It is a portal to the outside, a window out.  12  Residential  Commercial/ Residential  Water  Park Terminal (?)  N Source: Google Earth Scale 1:5000 Figure 9 : Ambleside: West Vancouver, B.C. Canada Ambleside, the focus of this project, has many similar qualities to these other examples. Park space, commerce and high density residential are all in close proximity providing a network of services. While Ambleside is much smaller in scale than most of the examples, the design proposal may, in turn, be as intimate as Ambleside (beginning on page 50). A ferry terminal here must be imagined as being a part of the total infrastructure of the region but maintaining a proportion relative to its context. When comparing different ferry terminals, successful or not, they do work best and add the most to the community where there are many of the residential, commercial and recreational factors which are latent in Ambleside. In view of achieving sustainability and livability, Ambleside has a great opportunity to capitalize on these factors, strengthening its commercial component and residential housing stock (See 2.4, page 34) to achieve these goals.  13  2. Ambleside’s Background  2.1 Ambleside’s Transportation History In the 1880’s West Vancouver’s population was comprised mostly of summer visitors who made their homes at only a few places along the shore with Ambleside being the main centre. People first travelled over from the bustling centre of Vancouver in their own canoes, but later began using the ferry service first initiated by an enterprising man known as Navvy Jack. “ This service began in 1866 and was a mere rowboat and lasted only a year, but it addressed one of the major development needs of West Vancouver that the entrepreneurial Navvy Jack recognized: transportation.” (History of West Vancouver. www.wvma.net. 2006) In 1907 a land developer, John Lawson, divided and sold parcels of his property in Ambleside. However, before this real estate venture was to proceed, he understood that a regular ferry service to Vancouver was paramount. To this end Lawson began a ferry service with sailings from the foot of 17th Street in West Vancouver to the Columbia Street dock in Vancouver. These ferries were directly responsible for the growth in the Hollyburn and Dundrave areas and the development of businesses around 14th and 17th streets of Ambleside. The resulting land use pa�ern is still evident to this day. In 1910 the then North Vancouver District Council built a wharf at Hollyburn (17th Street) at a cost of $9,000. “The wharfs exposed situation made it unsuitable for ferries it was also too short and did not extend into deep water. This did not prevent it from still being used by ferries between 1909 and 1912. It became an a�raction for tourists and young fishermen.” (History of West Vancouver. www.wvma.net. 2006) By 1912 Municipality of West Vancouver bought the fleet of ferries and by 1913 a new wharf and a ferry building were built at the bo�om of 14th Street. (West Vancouver History. West Vancouver Library, 2006) This was the great era of ferry travel in the Vancouver area, but by this did not mean that a profit was ever realized as the operating of the ferry service “would lose money for another 12 years.” (The History of Metropolitan Vancouver. www.vancouverhistory.ca, 2006) Or, as restated in this quotation: “West Vancouver was originally a series of villages sprinkled along the western portions of the North Shore. Accessible only by ferry until the first narrows crossing was built in 1936, these villages were populated by essentially three groups: summer time co�age dwellers a�racted by the seaside, retired people, and local residents whose income derived mainly from providing services to the other two groups. The building of the bridge by British Pacific Properties changed the nature of West Vancouver, 14  introducing expensive housing on the hillside for commuters who lived on the North Shore and worked in downtown Vancouver. Because of the Depression and the War, the full effects of the transition from village to bedroom suburb were only gradually felt before the 1950’s.” (1975 report of the Citizens’ Task Force on Managing Growth) “West Vancouver Housing Policy Review, June 2000” The ability to access the subdivided land has always been a principle concern for the development of West Vancouver. Though the construction of the Lion’s Gate Bridge and the arrival and design for the private automobile has shaped much of what is currently experienced in West Vancouver, the historical fact of the founding of Ambleside by ferry is as yet observable. With careful planning and design, Ambleside can use its opportunities latent in the history of ferry travel to great benefit, and with careful a�ention will continue to provide a good life in close association with the water.  2.2 Who lives in Ambleside ? 2.2.1 Ambleside Town Centre - the Heart of the Community (Excerpt from Greater Vancouver Regional District website) “Ambleside is West Vancouver’s historic commercial centre and the focus for community activities. Its extensive retail and commercial enterprises meet the daily shopping and service needs of many local residents and generate employment in the community. The area is strengthened by its extraordinary location adjacent to the waterfront and major parks, its proximity to major civic facilities and the high-density apartment area, its pedestrian scale and excellent accessibility by transit and roads.“ “With many civic functions centralized in the Ambleside area, the District of West Vancouver is the major employer. Convenient access to major transportation routes, transit, shops, restaurants, waterfront parks and community amenities makes this a very a�ractive place to work.” (“Municipal Town Centres” www.gvrd.bc.ca) 2.2.2 Statistics West Vancouver had a total population of 41,425 (2001). The largest population group in West Vancouver is the 50-54 year age group, who make up 3,780 or 9.1 % of West Vancouver’s total population. Current demographic and housing mix in West Vancouver compared to the region Compared to the Greater Vancouver Regional District (G.V.R.D), West Vancouver has: • smaller households living in larger homes; • a smaller proportion of young children and young adults and a higher proportion of senior citizens; • a higher percentage of single family homes; 15  • a slightly lower percentage of apartments; • a significantly lower percentage of ground oriented multifamily housing such as townhouses; • a higher percentage of owner occupied dwellings compared to rented dwellings; • significantly higher average rents, mortgage payments, and housing purchase prices; • substantially higher average and median incomes; • lower rates of low income. (“West Vancouver Housing Policy Review June 2000”)  Figure 10: West Vancouver’s Population Distribution “Facts and Stats: Age and Gender Population Projections” www.westvancouver.ca West Vancouver Planning and Development Accessed March 2006  2.2.3 Personal Impressions West Vancouver is a unique se�ing being very treed, rugged with a dramatic coastline. The vegetation and the hills seem almost to cradling the residents within its folds. It is set primarily on the stone shoulder of the mountain and is washed at its feet by the waters of English Bay and the Straight of Georgia on the Pacific Ocean. As one traverses, as most visitors do along Marine or The Upper Levels Highway, one is aware always that there is a slope being crossed; one way is up and one way is down. If one drops down to the sea, one can feel the presence of the cool water in the air, the exact shoreline species of vegetation such as Arbutus and Shore Pine, and remark on the wonderful expanse of visual variety that exists. The textures of the sea washed stone, the colour of the water, the names wri�en on the freighters at anchor, and the smallness of the 16  sailboats next to the freighters all works to bring into focus the unique character of Ambleside within the region as much as bring focus onto the whole region within the larger Pacific context. In Ambleside the commercial core has two flanking street which run parallel to its main street, Marine Drive, as well as significant retail on the streets running perpendicular. This creates a ‘mesh’ of commerce in which a wide variety of goods and services may be purchased. A great deal of care and consideration has gone into the construction of the streetscape over the years as there are deliberate curbs with excellent access ramps, benches at a high degree of regularity, a pleasing paved surface on all the sidewalks, and the designed street crossings are clear and well defined. The overall effect is quite lovely and even serene. It is a relatively level place in between mountain and sea where a relaxing atmosphere of late a�ernoon coffees and regular evening walks in the brisk sea air keep people healthy. However, despite the wonderful se�ing, the social and commercial fabric of Ambleside has a built in set of issues equally as specific as the views from its shore.  2.3 Contemporary Issues of Ambleside 2.3.1 Ambleside’s Residential Stock Though West Vancouver is not expected to have a great amount of growth in the coming years, it is understood that it is a part of a very quickly growing metropolitan area, and that great financial pressures, therefore, abide within it’s land use policies. West Vancouver’s governing agencies understand that it needs to create a balanced community able to provide shelter for the wide diversity of persons who enliven and contribute to a livable place. These people including children, seniors, and all the working personnel who do the day to day work of maintaining the community of which they are a part. While an apartment boom of the 1960’s and 70’s did establish a great number of affordable rental units, and since then the ground oriented townhouse or duplex has filled a certain niche, it is understood that there is very li�le rental accommodation for those who provide essential or other services, or for senior who have lived and contributed to the community for a great number of years. Options are, for the working demographic, to commute into West Vancouver from elsewhere, but for the senior the least favourable option is to move to another community where they are unknown and where they must adjust to another set of circumstances at an age when this is not always easy. A Transit Oriented Development’s results are that as the land-use shi�s, there is room, both in policy alternatives and physically within the matrix of Ambleside, for a great deal of low rise residential. The low rise profile will be in keeping within the Official Community Plan initiative of a maintained “village” scale of buildings. Please refer to Appendix 2.3 regarding “West Vancouver Housing Policy Review”  17  2.3.2 Ambleside’s Commercial Potential There are inherent characteristics of Ambleside which are posing a challenge to the continued success as a regional municipal center (“Municipal Town Centres” www. gvrd.bc.ca, 2006) . Among the various a�ribute recognized is that there are only a couple of true anchor stores (and chief among them is the Safeway grocery store with a disappointing street frontage) and that it is essentially a long corridor fronting on Marine drive with the addition of Bellevue and Clyde on the south and north sides respectively, but with no defined centre. It has a great deal of potential to a�ract people to the area as it is. However, if it were to open itself to the waterfront in a much more direct and appealing way, Ambleside is envisioned with an overall a�ractiveness and livability of an even finer grade. Some observations of challenges and opportunities are recognized by the West Vancouver Planning Department include: 1) a relatively low surrounding population density 2) a relatively older, lower income local population 3) lower representation of retail/department store type uses, and grocery/convenience uses 4) a possible need to strengthen anchors and city serving specialty stores 5) a long Main Street corridor (Marine Drive) Ambleside has a number of positive a�ributes: 1) a very a�ractive se�ing close to a number of community amenities i.e. park, waterfront, small scale cultural activities 2) several keystone stores (although it could potentially benefit from more), some city serving specialty stores, and many cafes and restaurants 3) a central, accessible location within the transportation network and traffic levels that are close to the ideal range for generating business while not detracting from the pedestrian environment “Renewing the Heart of our Community Ambleside Business Area Review: Comparison of Local Shopping Districts” There are efforts being made by the District of West Vancouver to understand the opportunities and constraints that are potentially keeping Ambleside from remaining the heart of West Vancouver. What it is imperative for West Vancouver to undertake is to imagine and vision what will make Ambleside a socially diverse, artistically creative, and increasingly desirable place. Some of the suggestions from the work done by the District of West Vancouver are: LAND USE • Create a more compact commercial area • Increase residential presence to support the commercial area and to provide vitality and “eyes on the street” • Celebrate the waterfront by strengthening its role in the Town Centre and expanding its activities 18  • Provide a variety of civic, commercial and service experiences FORM & CHARACTER • Create a sense of arrival and defined district edges • Establish a sense of identity through district area development standards and guidelines • Allow for up to three-storeys outright along Marine Drive from 14th to 18th and for four stories where criteria like context, scale, design and impact are positively met • Maintain a dynamic street with small scale commercial frontage • Enhance the pedestrian environment through traffic calming measures that balance traffic demand • Enhance link between Ambleside, Park Royal and Civic Centre • Create a central gathering space “Renewing the Heart of our Community: Goals for Strengthening the Town Centre” A desire to create a socially integrated community with a wide range of options exists. Options for housing, for a wide range of chargeable rents within a matrix of building forms and ages, an orientation towards the good things of life including arts, and for the restorative character of being close to the water. Options for a multitude of transportation options including bus, foot, bike, car and ferry are also desired for the young, working and senior aged persons. The arrival of a passenger ferry bringing people directly to and from the centre of Ambleside will have a large impact on the ability to achieve these wishes. The arrival of a ferry docking at the foot of 14th will not in and of itself change the larger issues of Ambleside. However, with careful consideration to the design of a true Transit Oriented Development, what the ferry will do is provide the strong structure for a new pa�ern. This pa�ern will encourages and reinforce all the positive a�ributes of increased sociability, commerce, walkability and in the end provide for be�er living close by the water. For a further reference of relevant existing policy to which this graduation project responded please refer to Appendix 2 “Existing & Guiding Policy” especially 2.4 & 2.5  19  2.4 Ambleside Site Analysis While many possible analyses could be done for this site, Ambleside, the graphics presented in the next pages reinforce the arguement that Ambleside has the opportunity to become an example of in-fill Transit Oriented Development. In the analysis it is revealed that Ambleside was, and is, a desirable location. It is a relatively level area within a varied and o�en sloped geography. It has a historic fabric of lots and streets stemming from the original village built surrounding the 14th street ferry wharf. The building of the commercial village of Ambleside over the intervening years has largely maintained a two and three storied scale, and character revealing ocean views from within this village have likewise been preserved. Furthermore, a redevelopment of the existing vacant lands and parking lots must be considered of prime opportunity for the further expression of increased pedestrian comfort combined with the increased amenity program of Ambleside. All of these are very positive a�ributes which set a series of parameters to design within. Ambleside’s weak points are that there is a large vacant lot, once a gasoline station, siting immediately in the centre of Ambleside and that the village is oriented primarily around the convenience of the automobile and not the pedestrian. While the automobile is indeed convenient and needs to be accommodated, designing uniquely for the automobile does not make for a successful mixed-use commercial, residential, transit and recreation space. The first set of images, starting on page 20, situate Ambleside within the region and give a historical context to the neighbourhood while the later images account and analyze the detailed strengths and weakness of Ambleside.  20  Vancouver Region  West Vancouver’s Ambleside  Area of Design Marin 14th 15th  e Dri ve  Bellevu e Argyle  13th A Pa mb rk le s  Bu ry Fe r  Club  Ambleside Wharf  Sail  ild in  g  id e  Figure 11: Locator Map of Ambleside Source “Google Earth” and “West Vancouver”  21  Se�lement was made possible in Ambleside because of the ferry service. There is a long tradition of residents having come and gone by shared water transportation. However as the automobile came to dominate the ferry service could no longer compete and disappeared. Figures 12 & 13: West Vancouver’s Ferry Service before the construction of the Lions Gate bridge. Pictured here is the “Doncella” docking at Ambleside. Source: “West Vancouver Library”  Figure 14: Ambleside Co�ages, 1918 “West Vancouver Museum & Archives”  22  Historic images of Ambleside, West Vancouver B.C. All of these are centred around the intersection of 14th and Marine and depict the size and scale of the commerce. Surprisingly, despite all the intervening years, a relative similarity still exists and creates the unique atmosphere of Ambleside being ‘village-like’. This is of prime consideration along Marine Drive and south to the waters edge, as the design proposal must keep the building to a proportion fi�ing the neighbourhood. Figures 15, 16 & 17: Historic Images Of Ambleside “West Vancouver Museum and Archives”  23  5  4  6  3 8  2  2  7  1 Figure 18: Ambleside’s Opportunities for a Transit Oriented Development 1: Wharf depth immediate adjacent to it for a 12 meter wide catamaran SeaBus type passenger ferry to safely dock. (See Appendix 2.2 & Appendix 2.6) 2: Park Blockages: The flow of pedestrian traffic is blocked by the private home and Sail Club present on the shoreline. 3: This park could be doing more for the community on a daily basis being so much at the heart of West Vancouver. 4: Passenger vehicle dominated street, speeds can be still reduced and pedestrian comfort increased. 5: Very important corner within the commercial fabric and sense of place, a landmark; now this lot sits empty. 6: A mere parking lot within the heart of Ambleside, what else can this become? 7: Rail line, separates the commercial core from the water. With careful a�ention to grades and details, this can be overcome. 8: Parking lot occupies a large piece of valuable waterfront, this situation should be rectified while the recreational service provided by the boat launch must be maintained.  24  8  5  4  6  7  2  3 1  Figure 19: Ambleside’s Beneficial A�ributes 1: The view Down 14th to the water’s edge. 2: The view to Vancouver Island and English Bay from the shore. 3: The view to Stanley Park and Lions Gate Bridge from the Wharf. 4: The ‘Ferry Building’ and it’s historic associations and current cultural amenity are very positive a�ributes to be maintained. 5: The scale of Commercial core along Marine Drive, many small shops of one and two stories each with its own character. 6: The Sail Club animates the waterfront. 7: The Granite fountain deigned by Don Vaughn enlivens the space. 8: The alleyways which give a second order, a�er streets, of circulation. These alleys vary from small alleys for pedestrians only to wide alleys dominated by vehicles and these too should be maintained and improved.  25  Sun Angles  Lesser Lands Breezes Dominant Sea Winds  Currents  Figure 20: Environmental Considerations •Slope: Ambleside is a relatively level area with the only limiting grade being created by the rail way base •Winds: The dominant wind is off the water with strong sea breezes, in all seasons possibly mixed with spray and when with rain can create a very difficult area to wait in. •Tides: Tides run past the area of Ambleside at regular intervals, but at irregular amounts and speeds. The docking of a ferry vessel here must respond to this flow with a protected facility and several structures called dolphins to aid in the docking of the ferry. 5 Meters separate low water and mean high over the course of extreme tide cycles. “Point Atkinson: Tidal Predictions” •Sun Angles: Over the course of the year, at this latitude of 49 degrees fi�een minutes, the sun shi�s it’s angles laterally and horizontally. This creates opportunities and reasons to create special spaces which take advantage of this fact. Roof overhangs which shade in summer but emit a great deal of winter light, is but one example.  26  3 1  2  Figure 21: Ambleside Movement Bus Current Anticipated Pedestrian Current Anticipated Bicycle Current Anticipated 1: Road closed to vehicle traffic, remains open to bicycle and pedestrian traffic to create a traffic calmed, pedestrian-oriented realm with excellent connectivity for the commuter or jogger alike. 2: A traffic calmed area, off the dominate grid of the commercial core, which serve the Sail Club and the new Ferry Terminal with a convenient area for short-term parking and service vehicles circulation. 3: This corner is very important. It is the first corner and the last corner. Here there will be a specifically wide and raised crosswalk to bring people comfortably across Bellevue and the rail tracks. 27  Figure 22: Ambleside in an aerial perspective. Major roads in red, railway in black and proposed ferry service in red dots.  Figure 23: Ambleside’s Built Form. In dark grey is the lower commercial core, medium grey shows the residential towers of the neighbourhood and light grey is mostly single family residential.  28  Figure 24: Major spaces in Ambleside. While there are many small defining places within Ambleside, the most identifiable places of Ambleside are those noted. The design process must work with recognition of these places as a backdrop to a Transit Oriented Development proposal.  Anchor Store Ambleside mbleside Centre Ambleside mbleside Landmark  Ambleside Entrance  To Upper Levels Highway  Figure 25: Ambleside’s Green and Grey Network. Ambleside has several disconnected parks and neglected alleys which may become an integral to the pedestrian and commercial life of Ambleside.  Figure 26: Ambleside’s Topography. Showing the relative levelness of the neighbourhood which is a benefit to creating a livable place within, what is, a mountainous district. This levelness is largely due to the outflow of sediments from the Capilano River mixed with suspended sediments from within English Bay & Burrard Inlet. “Geomap Vancouver” 29  Figure 27: Ambleside Figure Ground showing the discernable pa�ern of smaller single family homes surrounding the larger scaled apartments and three story walk up commercial zone.  Figure 28: Figure Ground by zoning showing the commercial in red, tower residential in orange, municipal services in purple, and single family in yellow.  Figure 29: Amenities and services available in Ambleside. One can see the existing density of services being concentrated in close proximity to the original centre of the community at the historic wharf. Once again the spatial pa�ern of activity and community growth can be encouraged through the creation of a desirable, walkable Transit Oriented Development.  30  Figure 30 View of Boat Launch This paved expanse does very li�le for the sense of being by the sea and only helps to limit the pedestrian realm of Ambleside. This boat launch area needs only be moved one block east and incorporated with the parking area of Ambleside Park.  Figure 31 View from Marine Drive to Water This space is key to the community of Ambleside. Once a gasoline station, now it sits empty.  Figure 32 Store fronts along Marine Drive The scale of this neighbourhood is ‘human’ and the variety of store fronts are elements to be maintained in new designs for Ambleside.  31  Marine Drive  Marine Drive  17th  16th  15th  14th  Marine Drive  Marine Drive 17th  16th  15th  14th  Figure 33 & 34: Ambleside’s View Corridors. These cones represent places within Ambleside from which the ocean may be viewed. Any development in this area must respect these cones and enhance the experience of being near the water. 32  Figure 35: What Will Keep Ambleside Great? In orange are the key a�ributes. These are the basic elements which make for a desirable place. In green are intangibles which are hard put a monetary or a absolute value, but without which life become rather sterile or even difficult. In blue are the measurably. These can be counted and begin to weigh against their relative occurrence or not in any given place, but in the case of Ambleside these are very a�ainable and related how the input of an in fill Transit Oriented Development can make living be�er near the Ambleside waterfront. (“ Project for Public Spaces”www. pps.org. 2005) 33  Figure 36: Ambleside SWOT diagram In orange are the 4 quarters of discussion, the strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats to Ambleside continuation as an excellent place to live. In green are those elements which may be weighed in their categories. In blue are brief discussions on the merits facilitating the advancement of these issues through design and zoning. (“Project for Public Spaces” www.pps.org. 2005)  34  Ambleside  Steveston White Rock  Single Family Industrial Commercial Park  Single FamCommercialily Rail line  Park  Figure 37: Diverse and Desirable Places to Live It noteworthy how the historic fabric has remained despite the intervening years when comparing Ambleside with two other waterfront communities of similar scale. In the case of Ambleside, the summer co�age area began with a ferry service and this changed, with further sub-division of land, into a true community surrounding this ferry dock. In close proximity was found all the services associated with the comings and goings of daily life including retail, hospitality and residential. At Steveston, on Lulu Island, the Fraser River and the Strait of Georgia provided the salmon which provided a living for those engaged in fishing and processing of this resource at this site. A complete town including all the regular services plus chandlery and boat repair were in close association with the fish-packing plants. White Rock has long been a beach fronted summer station for Vancouverities. Here there was a pull to be as close to the beach as possible, resulting in the single family homes near the beach, but with commercial services resulting in a tight mix of land uses. In all three places a matrix of services, residences, and other industries and institutions all vied for locations along the waterfront. This has resulted in these places remaining highly diverse and desirable places to live and work. Through care and design these same characteristics may be reinforced again to maintain and enhance the livability of these places, down near the water.  35  2  3  1  4  6  5  Figure 38: Questions and Statements Resulting from the Analysis 1: What may be reused? The wharf, the Ferry Building? Don Vaughn’s granite fountain assemblage? The Cherry trees? As these are a part of the memory of the place they must be preserved and made a part of the design. 2: The pedestrian realm is not resolved, with connectivity between places being poor, grades and curbs are not well placed; the private automobile still dominates. 3: Continuous small scale, two story, commercial frontage which helps creates a unique village like atmosphere. 4: View corridor comes down from the hills in a narrowing trend within the taller residential buildings. 5: Large waterfront area with great views, enough space to comfortably support a wider diversity of activities, especially so if the parking for the boat launch is moved to the foot of 13th. 6: How best to respect the fact that water is wet and it is cold; yet still experience water safely from the deck of boat or from a dock and wharf?  36  Ma  rin  Bus loop area  Ideal transit structure Site  Excellent wharf ready for refitting for a passenger ferry  e  Dr  ive  14th Potentail for commercial and residential redevelopment Current parking lot can be made part of the park system  Potential to build in structured walkway for complete shorefront access  Figure 39 Conceptual Resolution of Questions Though there are several options for potential land uses, imagining these spaces as delineated above remains faithful to the various policy initiatives including the Official Community Plan (See Appendix 2.1) as well as the accumulated community memory of the neighbourhood. This diagram will serve as the conceptual design scenario for further design examination.  37  3. Transit Oriented Development Design Guidelines Transit Oriented Development is first and foremost about people. What defines Transit Oriented Development is the active concern, through policy and design, for the easy function of the transit service, the comfort and safety of the pedestrian and bicyclist, and the potential for mixed commercial and residential density within close proximity to the transit facility. 3.1 Transit Facilities The arrival of the passenger to a comfortable and well located transit structure is of prime consideration. From here the passenger may access a diversity of other transit modes including walking, bicycle, ferry, bus or automobile. From here the passenger may also find commercial activity within the transit precinct or in close proximity which will provide services of novelty and necessity such as newspapers, flowers, dry-cleaning or groceries. Coffee shops, informal or formal dining options may also be considered here (due to the waterfront a�raction; see Appendix 2.7) and cultural facilities such as an art gallery may all bring much interest to the water’s edge. Interest and intellectual diversion is what will keep people coming back again, capturing the passenger into the transit system and achieving the goals of all transit operators in North America: increased ridership. The transit facility must be able to provide a variety of spaces for the alternating volumes of passengers. Some will be in a hurry, others waiting, others just watching everyone else. There will be sunny days in the winter and rainy days in the summer. People will respond favourably to all these conditions when the design of the structure and surrounds responds to their needs. (See Appendix 2.8) 3.2 Pedestrian Realm Every transit trip begins with a pedestrian event. This simple fact of walking creates the necessity of comfort and safety for the pedestrian to reach the new transit and commercial facilities. To achieve this goal sufficient sidewalk width is necessary, trees to shade and give a sense of enclosed separation from the vehicle ways, benches for respite with corresponding light standards and bollards will all add comfort and the appeal of a place well appointed. To reduce vehicle and pedestrian conflict curb-cuts, curb extensions and raised crosswalks with a textured paving pa�ern will all add greatly to safety of the area. The commercial fronts of the new buildings must add to the street atmosphere. Diversity in facades, materials, setbacks and style will all add visual interest. Store windows fronting the sidewalk create “eyes-on-the-street” which add to the perceived and real sense of security. 3.3 Mixed Use Zoning Single use zoning has created many dead areas. Mixed-use zoning helps to create places where work is accomplished, groceries purchased, and where children and seniors may 38  still be young. As studies of ecosystems has shown, the higher the degree of biodiversity the higher resilience within the community to adapt to changes in its environment. The same may be said for all human communities. Ambleside and West Vancouver, by their own admission, have an over representation of the retired, an under representation of working age persons, a low amount of rental housing, and a commercial area under fierce competition from shopping malls. Currently, it is very difficult for firefighters, school teachers or postal workers to live in the community. For Ambleside to remain the vibrant heart of West Vancouver the current zoning strictures need to favour greater diversity. This diversity can be reflected even in the age and character of each specific building, and even between floors and spaces creates a gradient of rents, paid and earned, which allows for a diversity of activity to flourish. (Jacobs, 1961 p.187) Making small changes to zoning policy will have direct impacts on improving and strengthening the community. As regarding density: Higher density developments put enough people in the neighbourhood to support public transit and local shops. A well interconnected street arrangement makes it easier and faster to get where you are going. Studies of neighbourhoods with these features show a general decrease in travel distance and trip duration and an increase in the walk/transit mode share. Neighbourhoods where there is a reduced dependence on the car are also more conducive to the formation of social ties. (“J.T.Chair” Sustainable Urban Landscapes, 2006) 3.4 Placemaking For a Transit Oriented Development to be truly successful and livable, it must be more than merely functional. The spirit of the place must be revealed in the redevelopment. (The Lonsdale Quayexample on page 7 is instructive in this instance.) By creatively using materials and forms latent in the physical and social geography innumerable opportunities for reflecting this site will present themselves. For example, in the case of Ambleside the best materials will be those reflecting the nature of its position between beach and mountain. Sand, rock, granite, timbers and muted tones of the rainforest are primary options in this regard. The design for Ambleside Transit Oriented Development should respond to the pitched-roof style of Ambleside, the beach-front orientation, as well as the sun, wind, and water forces which have shaped the beach at the foot of Ambleside. By responding honestly to these characteristics, the design will fit into its se�ing and the persons who frequent the neighbourhood will feel comfortable and genuine in this place beside the water. “Great places create an exhilarating fit between the humanbuilt environment and the natural environment. Great places are filled with imaginative possibilities and are rich in a diversity of experienced and opportunities. People 39  like to visit such good places, which enhances the economy further and brings excitement to public places. Ultimately, good places make everyday life more enjoyable” (“Smart Growth on the Ground, Squamish Chare�e” www.sgog. bc.ca. 2006) As an example of these sentiments the Vancouver’s Blueways Policy document encourages a diversity of activities along the waterfront including the viewing of industry, the establishment of waterfront restaurants, museums, private boat launching and mooring, and increased transit options made possible through making use of potential site well suited to these purposes. It also mentions that all these sites, and especially concerning wharves and docks should be brought up to the standards of accessibility for all persons through the use of ramps and elevators where necessary. (“Blueways: Access and Transportation Recommendations” www.city.vancouver.ca. 2006) 3.5 Ecology and Parks While people, buses and ferries are passing by it is also very important to maintain and enhance the functioning ecology of the space. In the context of an urban space this can be achieved by paying a�ention to the small niches. Capturing rainwater for native planting beds, protecting shoreline ecosystems through planting buffers and elevating pedestrian activity by boardwalks, using less energy through excellence in building design and by recycling materials such as timbers and trees already on site can help to create a robust ecosystem within and throughout this Transit Oriented Development. Yet, park space for people to enjoy the view, absorb the sun, enjoy each others company or be by oneself must be designed into the space surrounding the transit facilities. Connections between parks must be created, or where they exist, reinforced. This will encourage walking to the transit facility, instead of driving, and create a unified series of spaces reaching into the surrounding neighbourhood.  Figure 40: Park Connection.  40  Scale of buildings within  Although many tall residential buildings exist, maintaining the two and three story character to enhance the sense of a ‘village’ close to the shore and within the commercial coreis important.  Figure 42: Ambleside Building Scale Guideline  1: The Water a�racts people to this area, a transit facility will increase activity here. 2: The waterfront park adds to the appeal 3: History commercial core , fine grain, small scale and very amicable. 4: High residential area surrounding the Ambleside commercial core. 5: Lower density, largely single family residential, which contributes a resilient and stable demographic. 6: A predicted nflow of people and goods, and an outflow of talent and products occuring  Figure 41: Transit Oriented Development Diagram for Ambleside  3.6 Diagrams  41  42  Figure 44: Transit Facility Solar Orientation 1: Rail-way crossing will be greened within a bounding retaining wall and the grade for the pedestrian will be made less of a division. 2: Awnings will project from the buildings giving respite from sun and rain while also giving greater character and interest to the silhoue�e of the building, crenelating the surface 3: The overall size and scale off building will step down towards the water. 4: Balconies created through the se�ing back of the third story will reduce any canyon like feeling, allow greater penetration of sun and air throughout and also giving visual interest to the whole.  1: Light touch along the waterfront. Raised Boardwalks give access to the urban/water edge while maintaining a space for a viable ecosystem gradient. 2: Building look southwards and northwards towards the two uniting (urban and water) elements. The building has no perceived ‘back’, but is designed in the round.  Figure 43: Transit FacilityGuidelines  43  1: Protective awnings over store entrances. 2: Separation of vehicles and pedestrians. 3: Street width smaintained at 3 meters in each direction. 4: Windows along street which encourage a slowing of walking pace as pedestrians ‘window shop’ allowing more likelihood for neighbours to encounter each other.  Figure 46: Street Guidelines  1: Bellevue Road to have small scaled retail. Intimate and in proportion to the smaller scale of the area. 2: Small residential units near the water. These will likely be very desirable and generate a good rent. Imagined as being either seniors or single young persons lo� style apartments to fill a need in the housing market for just such accommodation. 3: Alley way will serve to create a second tier of activity filling a need within a rent gradient. 4: Alley itself is wide enough for emergency vehicles to pass through but really intended for the pedestrian.  Figure 45: Alleyway Guidlelines  44  1: Landmark architecture which announces this place, identifiable from a distance along Marine Drive. 2: Vista remains relatively open and unencumbered with new architecture. Clear views to the water are rare and should not be unnecessarily blocked. 3: The historic Ferry Building and the new ferry terminal work in conjunction to help frame the views from the town centre to the water.  Figure 48: Landmark and Vista Guidelines  1: Curbs maintained at approximately 10 cm for the psychological aspect of separating pedestrians and vehicles. 2: Street Trees of similar species and age to create an intimate effect 3: Sidewalk width maintained at 2 meters, not inclusive of curb extensions and bulb-outs. 4: Awning keeps rain off the pedestrian with water draining down to the channel under a bench to infiltrate or storm drain. 5 Bench along wall edge to encourage the spending of time and the ease of movement for the elderly. 6: Channel which removes rainwater through a gravel trench to storm drain 7: Balcony created as a part of the setback with a viewing place for persons to watch, simply. ”When you build a balcony, a porch , a gallery, or a terrace always make it six feet deep.” ( Alexander, 784)  Figure 47: Sidewalk Guidelines  Figure 49 Street trees, lighting and a hierarchy of destinations being human/pedestrian scaled. Source Transit Oriented Design GuidlinesLougheed & Burquitlam.p.13  Figure 50 Curb extensions shortens distance across street for the pedestrians and gives greater amount of space directly in front of the important corner commercial properties of the neighbourhood.  Figure 51 Articulated building fronts offering pedestrians the chance to stop and wait out of the flow of movement. Source: Transit Oriented Design Guidelines- Lougheed & Burquitlam.p.28  45  Figure 52: Encourage a diversity of roof top uses such as shelters and gardens. Source: Transit Oriented Design GuidelinesLougheed & Burquitlam.p.18 Figure 53: Stairs on the outside. Access to the upper floor building along the main route should be along the western edge of the building on the outside so that a clear and logical route may be perceived by the pedestrian. It also gives the building a direct outward to inward orientation, inviting the passerby in. “ ...the stair is functionally a continuation of the street.” (Alexander, 744) Figure 54: Public plaza should have a central focus, with seating and lighting, as well as be pedestrian friendly and human scaled. Source: Transit Oriented Design Guidelines- Lougheed & Burquitlam.p.23  Figure 55: Keep the street intimate with shops being able to spill out from their doors, inviting people in. Figure 56: “Make the north face of the building a cascade which slopes down to the ground, so that the sun which normally casts a long shadow to the north strikes the ground immediately beside the building.” (Alexander, 763) 46  47  3  Figure 57: North East Site 1: A very important corner within the fabric of Ambleside 2: Continuous flow of commercial fronts creating a sense of ‘village. 3: Alleyways create visual and social connectivity 4: Bring commercial activity to the foot of 14th, 5: Important to supply senior housing close to the heart of the community 6: Densifying existing neighbourhoods through in fill development  4  6  1 2  5  48  4 6 5  M ar in e  Dr ive  Figure 58: Transit facility/ Ferry Terminal Siting 1: Too closely associated only with the bus loop function. No orientation to sun. 2: Too much in the wind, exposed, as well as being firmly within a view corridor. 3: Windy and difficult to organize design programmes around a floating dock . 4: Far too much of this view corridor occupied as well as crowding the current Ferry Building. 5: Si�ing on the barren parking lot it would be too far away from transit activity. 6: Siting on the edge of the view corridor a new landmark is formed without dominating the scene. Orientation to a�ernoon sun is excellent, a�ernoon sea breeze shelter is available, nestling into the existing mature cherry trees, close to the bus and within the predicted flow of passengers moving into Ambleside.  3  2  1  View Corridors  14th  49  2  3  Figure 59: Argyle Avenue Upgrade and Greening 1: Friendlier bicycle path and pedestrian path 2: Create a bus loop 3: Drop off zone for vehicle passengers 4: Pedestrian curb extensions 5: Block off vehicle passage through here. 6: Orchard like parking area  1  5  4  6  50  2 3  Figure 60: Ambleside Park Connector 1: Buffer the properties along the foreshore with native vegetation. 2: Link into existing plaza in front of the historical “Ferry Building”. 3: Respect the primacy of the granit fountain design. 4: Path connectivity to the new Ferry Terminal. 5: Boardwalk added to connect the two parks in front of Sail Club. 6: Connection to Ambleside Park  1  4  5  6  4. Design for Ferry Transit in Ambleside Program: Aims (overall aim to study waterfront Transit Oriented Development) To design a more livable, accessible, interactive Ambleside as an example of what can be achieved as a water-side village near a large urban centre. As a regional town centre (“L.S.R.P”www.gvrd.bc.ca ) Ambleside could provide a prototype for appropriately scaled and human concerned redevelopment both within the context of a redevelopment and for other water front brownfield sites. Goals (the general needs of Ambleside) To provide an improved variety of transit options for greater access to Ambleside and the North Shore in general. To give a reason to come to live and recreate in Ambleside as a destination with greater comfort while achieving an increase in sustainable living pa�erns, (walking, transit use, neighbourliness, density, less resource use) while also fulfilling a mandate for increased arts and culture facilities within the Ambleside neighbourhood. Objectives (the specific needs for Ambleside’s waterfont T.O.D.) 1) Orient the village of Ambleside to the water 2) Transit options being a driver for changes in land use pa�erns 3) Rationalization of parking in this area 4) Accessibility for the elderly, both for accommodations and for mobility 5) Recreational concerns including sailing club activities and seawall linkages 6) Revitalization of Ambleside as a commercial center 7) Establishing Ambleside as a cultural center.  Bus Beach Terminal Commercial Wharf  Figure 61: Design Diagram 51  52  A large scale isometric view of he docking structure with ramps, a linking boardwalk from wharf to the two flanking parks, and a landmark transit station serving ferry, bus, bike, taxi, private automobile and pedestrian traffic.  Figure 62: Ambleside in Isometric View  53  Greened Railine  Bus Loop  N  Wharf  Improved Crosswalk  Mar ine  Floating Ferry Dock  Ferry Terminal  Driv e  Undergro und Parking  Sail Club  New Buildings  Beach  The results of such actions will be to create a more livable, enjoyable, community.  This other option of transit can be the catalyst for a financially rewarding redevelopment of the Ambleside area, intensifying the retail and residential land use pa�erns.  The neighbourhood of Ambleside has an under-used waterfront. Under-used in that, currently, commuters use their personal vehicles to cross the water via Ground Oriented a bridge when another Senior Housing option for crossing the water is readily available. This other option is a passenger ferry from the self-same dock from which the neighbourhood was originally se�led. Pedestrian Alley  Figure 63: Overall Site Scale 1:1500  54  Bus Lay By  Bus Lay By  N  Wharf approach  Improved crosswalks Drop Off Zone  Improved crosswalks  Granite Fountain  Ferry Terminal Building  The Drop Off zone is intended as a place for quick embarkation and equally quick turn around not interfering with bus traffic.  Two of the Bus Lay By are in close association with the approaches to either the wharf or transit shelter and have extra wide pedestrian crosswalks.  Figure 64: Transit Station Scale 1:500  55  N  Existing wharf  Ramp down  Berthing area  Dock  Wheelchair elevator  Dolphins  The elevator area will give accessibility to the transit service. (Figure 71 p.59)  The ramp down is of sufficient length to facilitate the changes in pitch due to tides.  The width of 10 meters will facilitate a boat of similar build to the current SeaBus.  The ‘Dolphins’ are sets of pilings with ba�ens to help break the water and guide the ferry into its berth.  The ferry has only a few programmatic needs, but thof those,safety and efficiency are paramount.  Figure 65: Wharf Scale 1:500  56  Drop Off Zone  Covered waiting area  Granite Assemblage  N  Boardwalk stairs down  Emergency vehicle  Cul d e of Ar sac gyle  Park i wat ng for erfr on and sail t club  Bellev ue Av e  Boardwalk  nd Street trees on curb  Access t under o grou  Boardwalk takes people directly to the water. (Figure 54,p.46)  Cul-de Sac on Argyle will reinforce the pedestrian realm by slowing all traffic to only a pre-parking speed. Emergency access will be maintained to the waterfront.  ‘Orchard-like’ diagonal parking will help with shade, visual appeal and help reinforce the perceived ‘design speed ‘ of Bellevue Ave.  Underground Parking within the new developments will replace any loss of parking without having it overwhelm the area.  Figure 66: Argyle & Bellevue Street Improvements Scale 1:500  57  Bus Loop  Bus Shelter  Bellevue Ave  N  drop off  14th street  Pede s acce trian ss  Trellis Structure  Marin e Driv e  Access to Underground  Pedestrian Walkway  Comfortable and wide crosswalks give a visual and physical priority to the pedestrian at all crosswalks.  A trellis structure will help mask the ramp down to the underground parking.  Alleys between building will be maintained as pedestrian priority areas with limited service and emergency vehicle access.  Figure 67: 14th Street Improvement Scale 1:500  58  To Wharf  Grass  N  Granite Assemblage  Paving  Bench  Bench  Pitched Glass roof Bike Storage  Plenty of benches offer a variety of spaces to occupy and points of view to be view from.  Glass roof on the terminal will add to the transparent nature of the structure and give light to the lower waiting area. (Figure 79, p.63)  Bike storage along the east, and less frequented by pedestrians, side of the transit terminal.  People may continue to use the fountain as before, wading in, siting. on the edge ( see Figure 77 p. 62)  Figure 68: Transit Station Beach Side 1:200  N  Cross Walk  59  Narrow orient pedestrianed alle y way  Alley ways and crosswalks reinforce the pedestrian realm. As every transit trip begins with a pedestrian event, enhancing these connections through the entire site will increase the comfort and safety of the pedestrians. The benefits of this are that Ambleside will be an even more desirable place to live and work, a be�er place to live near the water.  Figure 69: 14th Street & Alley Scale 1:200  60  Narrow pedestrian oriented alley way  Figure 71: Cross Section Across Argyle bus loop, Railway & Bellevue Street  Figure 70: Cross Section Along 14th  61  Figure 73:: Cross Section along Bellevue  Figure 72: Cross Section from Transit Station to Bellevue  62  Figure 76: Cross Section from Bellevue to Argyle over rail line  Figure 75: Cross Section from Bellevue to Argyle over rail line  Figure 74: Cross Section from Bellevue to water  63  Figure 78: Section of Wharf showing effects of tides on relative elevation  Figure 77: Section of Wharf showing Accessible Elevator  64  Figure 80: Visualization of new bus loop on Argyle  Figure 79: Visualization from foot of 14th looking north  65  Figure 82: Visualization from beach looking north  Figure 81: Visualization of Bus Loop  66  Figure 84: Visualization rail crossing on 15th  Figure 83: Visualization of transit station in context  67  1: Connects the existing pedestrian trail along the waterfront. 2: Made of full dimensioned timbers which give a quality of materials as well as being of the same design vocabulary as the wharf. 3: Give access to the beach via the stairs while also providing the ‘prospect and refuge’ , ‘above and below’ dialectics. 4: Texture of sand and gravel, wetness of water. Down to the shore to feel what it is to be beside the ocean. 5: Shoreline vegetation to be reestablished and augmented for it’s ecological role well as offering a modicum of privacy to the home owners directly adjacent to this boardwalk. The boardwalk will be in a lower position vis a vis the property. 6: Shoreline vegetation underneath the boardwalk creates a sense of being held within this vegetation, suspended just above the shore, beside the water, with a great view.  Figure 85: Boardwalk  68  Stairs Up 8 meters  24 meters  Elevation 4 meters 20 meters  With a restaurant above and a cafe below there will be a reason to slow down and stay, or while one is waiting for someone this provides a great deal of space to sit and observe the ebb and flow of tides and humanity as they pass by this place.  Transparent glass brings light down through to the middle of the structure, into the open breezeway which splits the structure in two on the ground floor. In this open breezeway a neutral area of being protected yet near the water enforces the connection to the water while not at all denying the connection to the community behind it.  Figure 86: Transparency and Orientation  69  1  2 4  3  4: Angled street covering which gathers rain water, directing to infiltration ditches & storm drains.  3: A drinking fountain and water tap. Grooved spaces are made for bicycles, perhaps dirty from mountain biking, to stand so to be washed from the tap’s hose.  1 & 2: A sheltered and wind screened wharf on the approach to the docking ramp. The wind ‘blinds’ are spring loaded and with slight wind begin to roll into the upright, protective, position.  A few design details which add to the comfort of the passengers and others in use of the transit facilities  Figure 87: Details  5. Conclusion The principles of Transit Oriented Development (T.O.D.) have been central to this project. As this project is about planning and designing for more livable and complete communities, the resulting design gives careful a�ention to the comfort and safety of the pedestrian realm with curb extensions, wider sidewalks, and a design for slower vehicle speeds. As one of the foremost authors on the subject, Peter Calthorpe, has wri�en: “The Transit Oriented Development concept is simple: moderate and high density housing, along with complementary public uses, jobs, retail and services, are concentrated in mixed-use developments at strategic points along the regional transit system....eliminating the danger of random growth in distant sites served only by highways.” (Calthorpe, 1993. 41) To further the design initiatives, an enhancement of the site’s ecology was also designed for where possible and in small ways with rain water capture and recharge, native shore plant establishment and a green roof planned for on the ferry terminal. Lastly, the transit facility itself is appropriate to the site and sufficient in scale to accommodate the passenger loads while offering seating and waiting areas, amenities such as a coffee shop, bicycle storage and an upper level restaurant. All this goes into making the building a destination in its own right, not function merely as an article of the transit infrastructure but as a keystone in the community. However, in light of all the possible design and policy details Calthorpe mentions ”A walkable environment is perhaps the key aspect of this concept. A healthy walking environment can succeed without transit, but a transit system cannot exist without the pedestrian. The growth of such pedestrian-friendly developments, if coordinated at the regional scale, can form the armature for future transit growth In fact, this type of development must preceded, not just follow the growth of our transit network.” Otherwise he cautions, “our transit systems have very li�le chance of survival in the low-density environments of sprawling suburbs” (Calthorpe, 1993. 41-42.) There are many places throughout North America which may incorporate the principles of Transit Oriented Development. By organizing transit systems in conjunction with planned development of residential, retail and office space cities will come to gain. The cities will gain by lessened demands on existing infrastructure such as freeways, lessening demands for new and dispersed infrastructure such as sewers and power, increased nodes of employment where auxiliary services may be provided, increased population density around these nodes which will all combine to create a more complete and livable city. A city engaging Transit Oriented Development will become a city with centres, nodes and neighbourhoods in which a diversity of persons may find homes and employment in a close, walkable, relationship. As a report regarding transit in Washington, D.C. states: “access to transit, as a positive amenity, will be “capitalized” in the value of land and residential or commercial property. It turns out that the nature of these benefits is dual: the proximity of transit may not only facilitate the access to 70  customers but also the access to the work force.” (“Commercial Benefits” p.15). This is an alternative to the situation in which there is only the option to find housing further and further afield, accessible only by the automobile, which has caused cities to become filled not with neighbours but with strangers. On an even larger scale, this type of development may help to re-imagine the system of terminals of B.C. Ferries (Figure 1, page 4) as much as the more humble wharves and docks around Burrard Inlet and the Straits of Georgia. A renaissance in the towns, villages and cities around coastal British Columbia is happening. Continuing to plan these widely spaced communities for being accessed by the automobile will not be responsive to changes in transportation mode use or be responsive to the ideals of livability. These villages and towns have the necessary space to be more sustainable, but an example is needed. The construction of the Lions Gate Bridge has resulted in a community designed around the automobile rather than designed to enable the citizen withinin her community. Yet, despite this, and the construction and expansion of the nearby Park Royal Mall, Ambleside remains the heart of West Vancouver. This speaks to the strength of Ambleside. It demonstrates how a diversity of zoning including residential, commercial and recreational creates strength despite all the reasons that it should falter. The fabric is strong, a�achments to this place are strong and these a�achments are a great opportunity, if wisely planned, for the future progress of West Vancouver. The proposal for a branch of the ferry network to once again arrive at the wharf at the foot of Fourteenth Street in Ambleside will add yet another layer to this fabric, further strengthening the livability of Ambleside. By creating a node of activity, ferries coming, people walking, people watching, people eating and people shopping a defined ‘place’ emerges. A place cresting from its location beside the water, a place true to its source. A source, sprung from the deck of boats, which now may serve as the source for renewal for Ambleside. This responsiveness to it’s source will reveal an authentic relationship of this space- the meters square - and to this place - the Ambleside community. While it is a gradual process, looking forward for inspiration and back for instruction, clues as to what is genuine and possible in Ambleside are siting there waiting to be used as an excellent example of an in-fill Transit Oriented Developemnt. Ambleside has the physical space and the appropriate ‘bones’ to support a wider diversity of transit options as well as the services which compliment this activity. The community around a renewed ferry service will benefit greatly from the increased interchange of persons coming and going from this location (see p.41). The effects of this will not only be applicable to Ambleside, but further encourage the continued project of making the Greater Vancouver region more livable. In short, by using the potential of the waterfront to access the existing amenities, living in Ambleside will only be be�er. Be�er, that is, when it is in even closer association to the life giving disposition of water. By designing for this disposition, once water may again become a positive formative influence on the urban development of coastal British Columbia. 70  6. Bibliography Online Sources: “Blueways” h�p://www.city.vancouver.bc.ca/engsvcs/streets/blueways/policies. html.homepage. City of Vancouver Accessed January 2006 “Commercial Benefits” Commercial Property Benefits of Transit: Final Report Federal Transit Administration Prepared By: Hickling Lewis Brod INC.June 12, 2002 “Facts and Stats: Age and Gender Population Projections” h�p://www.westvancouver. ca/article.asp?c=450 West Vancouver Planning and Development Accessed March 2006 “Facts and stats of Wets Vancouver” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/upload/documents/ Income.pdf Home >> Planning & Development >> Community Planning >> Facts & Stats Accessed March 2006 “Geomap Vancouver” h�p://gsc.nrcan.gc.ca/urbgeo/geomapvan/geomap3_ e.php#legend4 Natural Resources Canada. Accessed January 2006 “Google Earth” h�p://www.googleearth.com. Accessed multiple dates September 2005 through April 2006 “History of West Vancouver” h�p://www.wvma.net/history/index.html West Vancouver Museum and Archives, Accessed March 2006 “Introduction to Meteorology and Related Sciences: Local Effects” h�p://www.msc-smc. ec.gc.ca/education/imres/13_meteorology/135_topics/1_3_5_3_local_effect_e.cfm Environment Canada Accessed March 2006 “J.T Chair” Sustainable Urban Landscapes: Neighbourhood Pa�ern Typology h�p://www.sustainable-communities.agsci.ubc.ca/projects/SDRI/typ.pdf The University of British Columbia JamesTaylor Chair in Landscape and Liveable Environments Accessed January 2006 “Smart growth on the Ground, Squamish Chare�e”h�p://www.sgog.bc.ca/uplo/ SqCPSec4.4.pdf Smart Growth on the Ground Accessed February 2006 “The History of Metropolitan Vancouver” h�p://www.vancouverhistory.ca/chronology9. htm accessed March 2006 “Transit Station Communities” (h�p://www.psrc.org/datapubs/pubs/view/0701.htm) Puget Sound Regional Council Accessed March 2006  72  “Local Shopping Areas (LSA) – Comparative Indicators” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/upload/documents/Appendix%202%20Comparison%20of %20Local%20Shopping%20Areas%20183318.pdf West Vancouver Planning: Ambleside Town Strategy Accessed March 2006 “LSRP”h�p://www.gvrd.bc.ca/growth/lrsp.htm greater Vancouver Regional District Accessed January 2006 “Municipal Town Centres” h�p://www.gvrd.bc.ca/livablecentres/ambleside.htm GVRD Livable Centres Accessed February 23, 2006 “North Vancouver Museum and Archives” h�p://www.district.north-van.bc.ca/nvma/ North Vancouver museum and Archives, Accessed March 2006 “Point Atkinson : Tidal Prediction” h�p://tides-marees.gc.ca/cgi-bin/tide-shc.cgi Fisheriesand Oceans Canada:Tides currents, and Water Levels. Accessed February 2006 “Project for Public Spaces: Place Diagram” h�p://www.pps.org/info/placemakingtools/ downloads/place_diagrams?referrer=homepage_ads Project fro Public Spaces Accessed September 2005 “Project for Public Spaces:What We Do” h�p://www.pps.org/info/aboutpps/ about?referrer=pps_navbar Project For Public Space Accessed March 2006 “Renewing the Heart of our Community Ambleside Business Area Review: Comparison ofLocal Shopping Districts” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/upload/documents/ Ambleside Strategy.pdf District of West Vancouver Planning Department, Accessed March 2006. “Renewing the Heart of our Community:Goals for Strengthening the Town Centre” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/upload/documents/Ambleside_Strategy.pdf District of West Vancouver Planning Department. Accessed March 2006. “Transit System Map” h�p://www.translink.bc.ca/files/maps/sys_maps/Dec_sys_Route_ Map.pdf Translink Accessed March 2006 “Transit Oriented Design Guidlines- Lougheed & Burquitlam.” City of Coquitlam Prepared by: Catherine Berris Associates April 15th 2002 “West Vancouver History” h�p://www.westvanlib.org/HistoricalFront%20Page%20Webs /WVML/HISTORY/HISTORY5.HTM West Vancouver Library Accessed March 2006 “West Vancouver Housing Policy Review (June 2000)” h�p://westvancouver.ca/upload/ documents/housingreport.pdf District of West Vancouver Planning Department Accessed March 2006  73  “West Vancouver Library” www.westvanlib.org/ HISTORY/ferries_thumbs.htm West Vancouver Public Library. Accessed January 2006 “West Vancouver Museum and Archives” h�p://www.wvma.net/museumimages West Vancouver Museaum and Archives, Accessed March 2006 “West Vancouver OCP” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/article.asp?c=897 (Planning and Development> Community Planning>Community Plan) West\Vancouver Planning & Development Accessed October 2004 “West Vancouver Parks and Open Space” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/upload /documentsOCP%20Web%20DocumentsAdopted%202004%20 Official%20Community%20Plan/15Parks_and_open_space.pdf West Vancouver Parks Accessed March 2006  Publications: Alexander, Christopher. “ A Pa�ern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction” New York:Oxford University Press. 1977 Berolowitz, Lance. “Dream City: Vancouver and the Global Imagination” Douglas & McIntyre, Vancouver, B.C. 2005. Calthorpe, Peter. “The Next American Metropolis : Ecology, Community, and the American Dream.” New York : Princeton Architectural Press, 1993. Di�mar, Hank & Ohland, Gloria. “The New Transit Town. Best Practices in Transit Oriented Development.” Washington D.C.: Island Press. 2004 Eliade, Mircea. “The Sacred an Profane; The Nature of Religion” New York: Harvest Books, 1957. Jacobs, Jane. “ The Death and Life of Great American Cities”. New York: Vintage Books, 1961. O’Meara, Molly. “Reinventing Cities for People and the Planet” Jane A. Peterson, Editor Wolrd Watch Paper 1 4 7 (June 1999) Porter, Douglas. 2002. Making Smart Growth Work. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute. Rapanos, Dino. “ Ambleside: The North South Connections” Report to The District Of West Vancouver, B.C. March 1982  74  Appendix 1: Methodology This project has its roots in several lectures I have a�ended over the last couple of years regarding transit issues in the Vancouver region. The need for an improved and expanded network of ferries around Vancouver was made clear, especially when so many opportunities are present and vitally needed. Once this project and scope was chose to be about the rejuvenation of Ambleside through the input of ferry transit, the first step was one of looking abroad, and locally, for examples of where passenger ferries exist within a modern urban area. A search for policy statements from West Vancouver’s Official Community Plan, prospective projects to be undertaken by the regional transit authority Translink, and other relevant documents regarding waterfronts and livability were read and extracted for guiding principles. Peter Calthorpe’s monograph “The Next American Metropolis” and especially the five main points as elucidated in Di�mar & Ohland’s “New Transit Town: Best Practices in Transit Oriented Development” (Appendix 2.8) were extremely instructive and inspirational regarding Transit Oriented Development. Many site visits were undertaken and to evaluate, photograph and imagine the possibilities of what scale and style of development would best suit the place of Ambleside. A vision for the current status as well as for how the neighbourhood could be in the next fi�y years was kept in the foreground. Conversations were had with officials in the District of West Vancouver and with an official with Translink regarding the shape and space of the foot of 14th street in Ambleside. The existing wharf was described, and later proven by marine charts, to be sufficient in depth to accommodate a passenger ferry’s draught and the overall desire for this locale to become more than what it is now was made manifest through these conversations. Guidelines were developed as to what was appropriate and necessary for this neighbourhood of Ambleside to really come alive and effective in the delivery of this passenger ferry transit service. Guidelines regarding the pedestrian realm, the location of the terminal, and the scale of buildings, among others were developed. With base maps constructed from online sources I was able to establish exact distances and sizes of lots and began to try out a variety of scenarios based on the precedents, policy, theory and site visits with the results as the final design.  75  Appendix 2: Existing & Guiding Policy Appendix 2.1 West Vancouver’s Official Community Plan (O.C.P) Municipal parks are categorized as follows: District parks: regional a�ractions with significant natural, recreational or community assets and amenities. They are typically large and are destinations for people living throughout the Lower Mainland as well as local residents. Such parks include Ambleside, Lighthouse Park, Cypress Falls, Horseshoe Bay, the Centennial Seawalk (from John Lawson Park to Dundarave) and Whytecliff. Policy P 7 Protect the shoreline and significant environmental and cultural features. • Review the existing municipal policy to acquire the remaining private waterfront lands in the 1400 and 1500 Block of Argyle Avenue and examine various long-range land use options for providing accessible public open space along the central West Vancouver waterfront. • Continue to restrict encroachments on the public foreshore and regulate existing structures to minimize environmental impact. • Protect park areas rich in cultural history. • Protect parks and public open spaces from damage resulting from erosion and storms. • Recognize and protect the heritage of waterfront piers. Policy P 8 Promote public access throughout the community. • Plan for, provide and maintain a coordinated system of links for pedestrians and cyclists that will enhance walking and cycling opportunities. • Support increased public awareness of urban trails and public rights-of-way. • Identify public access routes to public open spaces and protect them from encroachment. • Ensure access for persons with disabilities wherever feasible. Placemaking Provide for a scale and massing of buildings that promotes an enjoyable living, working, shopping and service experience, • explore opportunities to improve existing streets and sidewalks, as well as building facades, • facilitate pedestrian movement into and within the area, and • promote construction of new buildings and structures that are compatible with the character of these areas and contribute to business viability and economic growth.  76  Policy BF-C 4 Buildings up to three stories above the adjacent street in the Ambleside Town Centre may be considered to encourage meritorious design. Building design should contribute to visual street interest, not significantly reduce views from existing residential uses generally, maintain the overall low scale village character, not significantly impede available sunlight to the street, and not increase the total building floor area that would otherwise be permi�ed in a two storey building. Transportation and Mobility As a means of reducing our dependence on automobiles, policies within this Plan support a more readily accessible transit system and the continued success of the Blue Bus system. They promote connections within the community and to other parts of the Greater Vancouver Regional District, pedestrian connections, and development of an improved cycling network. Implementation of effective transportation policies will lead to responsible and efficient land use decisions, avoid further impact on environmentally sensitive areas, and reduce vehicle trips. New infrastructure and development projects will consider topographical constraints in right of way construction. They will also apply innovative design principles, recognize aesthetic considerations, and build upon the predominance of narrow roads in our landscaped se�ing. Policy T 1 Coordinate and consult with provincial agencies, neighbouring municipalities and the Squamish Nation to enhance public safety and mobility. Work with BC Rail on ma�ers of mutual interest including use of BC Rail lands for pedestrian and cycling connections, utility corridors and for possible commuter rail use. Policy T 2 Pursue comprehensive approaches to local transportation planning, including support of sustainability principles. • Develop a strategic transportation plan for West Vancouver that is broadly based and goes beyond traditional solutions to incorporate the environmental and social criteria of sustainability. Such a plan will include the coordination of land use and its impact on travel demand. Policy T 5 Enhance and expand transportation options to reduce auto dependency and associated environmental impacts. •Enhance North Shore transit service between major activity centres such as Marine Drive, Park Royal, Lonsdale Avenue, Lion’s Gate Hospital, Capilano College and the BC Ferries Horseshoe Bay Terminal. • Enhance transit service and connections between the North Shore communities and centres of activity south of Burrard Inlet, including downtown Vancouver. “West Vancouver OCP” h�p://www.westvancouver.ca/article.asp?c=897 (Planning and 77  Development> Community Planning>Community Plan) West\Vancouver Planning & Development Accessed October 2004  Appendix 2.2 Translinks Plans  In 2003-2004 TransLink undertook the Vancouver Harbour Passenger Marine Study, a feasibility study on potential new regional passenger marine services. The report examined 24 potential ferry terminals and 22 potential routes. It was supported by a Technical Steering Commi�ee with staff from TransLink and the affected municipalities, the regional transportation demand-estimation model, and a telephone interview market research study. The study found there was a relatively small market for new ferry services, with the Bowen Island-Ambleside-Waterfront Station route showing the most promise. On December 8, 2004 the Board directed staff to: 1. Explore potential partnership models for passenger marine service delivery; and 2. Develop an overall water strategy in the future examining how the GVTA might contribute to the increased utilization of the region’s waterways for the movement of goods and people. DISCUSSION Ambleside – Waterfront Station Discussions have also taken place with the District of West Vancouver to explore a possible ferry route between Ambleside and downtown Vancouver. There is a possibility of using smaller vessels as the sea keeping issue is not as challenging on this link. There could also be significant off-peak demand, which may imply a different service delivery model than for the service between Bowen Island and Waterfront Station. A particular challenge for this route would be the upgrading of docking facilities at Ambleside in West Vancouver. Terms of reference are being developed by staff to update the previous work and complete the feasibility study. Next Steps The introduction of any new passenger marine service will involve working with the local municipalities and consultation with the affected communities. Staff will bring the results of this work back to the Board for a decision to proceed or not in early 2006. If feasible, this could potentially lead to a pilot project in early 2007. Any pilot would be independent of plans for a third SeaBus to augment the current service on the Lonsdale/Waterfront run. CONCLUSION Staff is continuing to investigate partnerships, service concepts and operating arrangements for possibly two pilot passenger marine services – Bowen Island/ Waterfront Station and Ambleside/Waterfront Station. It is intended to bring the results of the feasibility work back to the Board in early 2006. h�p://www.translink.bc.ca/WhatsNewandBoardMeetings/Board_Reports/2005/20050921. asp Accessed October 2005  78  Appendix 2.3 Housing Changes in the demographic mix of West Vancouver, shi�ing market conditions, and continued growth through out the region are influencing what is considered appropriate, well located housing, and is affecting affordability. The dramatic increase in West Vancouver’s seniors population has created a significant unmet need for seniors housing in central locations. A decline in the proportion of young families and children in West Vancouver has raised concerns about social balance in West Vancouver which is affected by the lack of affordable, ground oriented housing alternatives. The trend towards an aging population has occurred at regional and national levels, however, in West Vancouver it has preceded those in other communities and has been significantly more pronounced (with seniors representing 21% of the population in 1996 compared to 12% for the region). This can be a�ributed to the high proportion of middle aged adults who moved to West Vancouver in the early 1950s and 1960s during the development boom and chose to remain here as they aged. Since that time, West Vancouver has continued to a�ract middle aged adults who can afford large, expensive homes. As they age, the proportion of seniors will further increase. “West Vancouver Housing Policy Review (June 2000)”  Appendix 2.4 Smart Growth on the Ground Principles: Each community is complete Smart Growth on the Ground communities allow residents to live, shop, play and in some cases, work in the same local area. Compact, complete communities use land and infrastructure more efficiently, while providing more living choices for residents and local employees. A neighbourhood of mixed uses also supports transportation options, a strong property tax base, and vibrant places. Options to the car are emphasized Smart Growth on the Ground communities reduce the emphasis on automobiles, and provide for other transportation choices. Compact neighbourhoods with an interconnected street network are convenient for walking and cycling, and can provide sufficient density and a mix of uses to provide a sustainable ridership base for transit. Transportation choices reduce congestion and pollution and allow residents who cannot drive (such as children, seniors, and people with disabilities) to access daily activities on their own. Work in harmony with natural systems Smart Growth on the Ground communities respect, maintain, and restore the natural functioning of the landscape. Communities can be more environmentally friendly, energy efficient, and cost effective, by respecting natural ecosystems - particularly agricultural land and stream systems and their associated aquatic habitat.  79  Buildings and infrastructure are greener, smarter, and cheaper Smart Growth on the Ground communities optimize the economic, social and ecological impact of buildings and infrastructure. In today’s typical development pa�erns, the basic infrastructure needed by homes and businesses o�en causes environmental damage. Moreover, it is no longer a given that municipalities can pay for the mounting costs of aging infrastructure. Innovative development standards, such as “green” infrastructure and buildings or natural drainage systems, can result in lower impact solutions that cost municipalities, residents, and businesses much less over the long term. Housing meets the needs of the whole community Smart Growth on the Ground communities incorporate a variety of housing in the same neighbourhood and even on the same street. A mix of housing types (both owned and for rent) allows residents to live in a community throughout their life, and recognizes the increase in non-traditional households such as empty nesters, single parent families, and childless couples. A range of housing also allows lower income residents (such as seniors on fixed income or recent graduates) equal access to community amenities and local employment opportunities. Jobs are close to home Smart Growth on the Ground communities foster sustainable economic growth. Local economic growth allows many residents to find employment close to home and supports local businesses. At the same time, directing growth into compact, complete areas makes the best use of existing infrastructure and ensures a strong, stable property tax base. The spirit of each community is honoured Smart Growth on the Ground communities are animated, diverse, and have a strong local identity. The cultural heritage of the community is celebrated in meaningful ways. Vibrant neighbourhood and town centres are focal points for community interaction, allow residents to find work, shopping, and other activities close to home, and provide a population base to support local businesses and transit. Everyone has a voice Smart Growth on the Ground communities belong to those who live, work, and play there. Meaningful participation includes an early and ongoing role for community members by engaging them in planning, design and development processes. This ensures that new development is accepted by existing stakeholders and responds to local needs. The way that these principles are enacted will vary depending upon local needs. For example, to ensure that housing meets the needs of the whole community, stakeholders in one community may decide to legalize basement suites, while another may choose to allow condominium high rises. h�p://www.sgog.bc.ca/content.asp?contentID=50  80  Appendix 2.5 James Taylor Chair in Landscape and Liveable Environments Higher density developments put enough people in the neighbourhood to support public transit and local shops. A well interconnected street arrangement makes it easier and faster to get where you are going. Studies of neighbourhoods with these features show a general decrease in travel distance and trip duration and an increase in the walk/ transit mode share. Neighbourhoods where there is a reduced dependence on the car are also more conducive to the formation of social ties. Higher densities (smaller lots and dwellings, and more people) may allow the cost of developing such neighbourhoods to be substantially lower. “Sustainable Urban Landscapes: Neighbourhood Pa�ern Typology” h�p://www. sustainable-communities.agsci.ubc.ca/projects/SDRI/typ.pdf P.5 Recognition of this connection challenges us to re-evaluate the neighbourhood development pa�ern as a fundamental determinant in the realization of sustainable communities. Once replicated on multiple sites, a neighbourhood development pa�ern becomes an integral part of the fabric of the region. And, just as the health of each cell contributes to the overall health of the body, the sustainability of each neighbourhood helps to determine the ultimate sustainability of the region. Regional sustainability begins with the choices we makeabout the neighbourhoods we build. The Pedestrian Oriented Pa�ern is laid out in an interconnected street system, which shortens distances between destinations. Narrow roadways, street trees and sidewalks make many of the streets pedestrian friendly. Major streets, found every few blocks, are lined on both sides by sidewalks and street trees and are usually well served by transit. These streets are o�en the hub of civic and commercial services. “Sustainable Urban Landscapes: Neighbourhood Pa�ern Typology” h�p://www. sustainable-communities.agsci.ubc.ca/projects/SDRI/typ.pdf p.16  Appendix 2.6 Phone Interview with Don Buchanan of Translink, January 23, 2006 Several questions were posed to Don Buchanan of Translink regarding the vision for each of the items below. 1: What size of vessel are we looking at for this project? What passenger capacity? Vessel Size: It is going to be much smaller that the SeaBus. It will maybe offer a few runs a day at peak times and a few during day for shopping with a capacity of 80100 passengers. It is important to frame the project in longer term vision of land use planning around the ferry terminal. Design around serving the community. Facilities for docking are for a ‘smaller’ vessel. 2: How do you imagine the inter-modal( Bus Loop) facilities operating in conjunction with this ferry service? 81  Bus Loop: Think of community shu�les, accessible, small exchanges. We need good new regional models for bus loops. 3: What about parking, and your opinion on Park and Ride sort of facilities in this area? Parking: Always congestion, always controversial. Measures to mitigate driving and parking with meter parking for high turnover rate. We have a philosophy that Transit stations are one of the most important parts of the community, and should not be surrounded in parking but rather with mixed use amenity services. 4: What size of passenger catchment area are we looking at? How do you envision this operating within the larger context of West Vancouver’s overall transit needs? Vision: I see this project serving Ambleside only as opposed to a wider West Vancouver need for once someone is in a car or already on a bus there is li�le need to get on the ferry, there is no time saving by ge�ing on this ferry if they have originated the trip, say, in Caulfield. This will primarily serve local neighbourhood and not the whole of West Vancouver. It is also about regional equity; that is, sharing the wealth of Translink around the GVRD.  Appendix 2.7 Vancouver’s ‘Blue Way Program’ Access and Transportation Recommendations for the General Area states: 1.Prepare waterbody plans which identify key locations for access to the Waterfront. •Higher impact access points should be targeted around existing nodes of development to minimize encroachment on waterfront habitat and to preserve areas with potential for habitat restoration. •Link access points with other uses or activities to increase their a�raction, interest and safety (e.g. opportunities for fishing, educational programming, historical markers or local museums, small scale retail or restaurant uses where appropriate. •Expand pedestrian, in-line skating, and cycle paths adjacent to seawalls; enhance existing activity nodes with piers, parks , benches, retail, or restaurant uses. 2. Identify existing or potential docks that could be used for boat drop-off and pick-up. Permit transportation uses such as ferry stop to provide area-wide access (e.g.linked to nodes of activity or transportation to other area of the city) 3. Develop design standards for public docks to allow for multiple uses. Multiple uses could include ferry service, short term recreational boating use for passenger pick-up and drop-off, small boat landing and launching, and emergency use. 4. Incorporate barrier free access systems into docks using ramping systems and/or elevator service for people with disabilities. 82  5. Ensure appropriate public transportation links to nodes of activity along the water. Consider linking B.C. transit service with private and/or public ferry systems h�p://www.city.vancouver.bc.ca/engsvcs/streets/blueways/pdf/Blueways_dra�.pdf p.15,16  Appendix 2.8 Five main goals of Transit Oriented Development 1: Location Efficiency: •Density: Sufficient customers within walking or bicycling distance of the transit stop to allow the system to run efficiently •Transit accessibility: Transit stations and stops that are central or conveniently located within the TOD and services that allows each rider to reach their destination easily •Pedestrian friendliness: A network of streets within the transit district that is interconnected and scaled to the convenience of the pedestrian. (P.24) 2:Rich Mix of Choices: A well designed neighbourhood offers many activities within walking distance for those who do not drive, people who cannot afford cars, and people who choose not to rely on cars to get around. Similarly, a neighbourhood built on the principle of choice provides community residents with a range of housing options so they can find homes that suit their needs as they progress through life’s stages and aren’t forced to leave the community. Integrating job sites with housing that is affordable to a broad group of households also solves transportation problems by allowing people to live close to work. TOD offers a wider range of housing, mobility and shopping choices than typical conventional suburban development. Rather than leaving residents with no other option than to live in a single family home, shop at an auto oriented retail centre, drive to their workplace, and chauffeur their children to activities, transit oriented development can offer shopping choices that range from small shops to large retail outlets, and alllow residents to get around on foot, by bicycle, or transit...(and automobile also at reduced rates of speed) (P.26) 3: Value Capture: Since transportation is the second highest consumer expenditure (a�er housing), success in creating effective transit-oriented development could mean substantial economic value capture. Success (in this capture) requires frequent and high quality transit service, good connection between transit and community, community amenities and dedication to place making and a�ention to financial rewards. (P.26) For local governments, value capture can mean higher tax revenues from increased sales and property values. For the transit agencies, value capture means both lease revenue from joint development and increased revenue from fare boxes. A third outcome for transit providers is reduced access cost. Developers are obviously looking for return on 83  their investments, which can be stable longer in TOD communities. ....employers can capture value in reduced employee commute times. Transit-oriented development also offers value capture in terms of reducing household expenditure on transportation and increased opportunity for wealth capture through home ownership.....households in denser, transit-rich neighbourhoods have significantly lower transportation expenditures. 4: Place Making: One of the greatest limitiations....is that not enough a�ention has been paid to making them a�ractive and pedestrian friendly places. If transit is inserted into a healthy pedestrian environment, then pedestrians can become transit riders....if transit is not convenient, not appropriately frequent, or not linked with the desired destinations of local riders, then the transit-oriented aspect of the development will fail. Places for People: For places to be well used and well loved they must be safe, comfortable, varied, and a�ractive. They also need to be distinctive and offer variety, choice and fun. Vibrant places offer opportunities for meeting people, playing in the street, and watching the world go by. Enrich the Existing: New development should enrich the qualities of existing urban places. This means encouraging a distinctive response that arises from and compliments its se�ing. Make Connections: Places need to be easy to get to and should be integrated physically and visually with their surroundings. This requires paying a�ention to how people get around by foot, bicycle, public transportation and the car - and in that order. Work With the Landscape: Places should balance between the natural and man-made environment and utilize each site’s intrinsic resources - the climate, landform, landscape, and ecology - to maximize energy conservation and amenity Mix Uses and Forms: Stimulating, enjoyable, and convenient places meet a variety of demands and provide amenities to the widest possible range of users. They also weave together different building forms, users, tenures and densities. Manage the Investment: For projects to be developable and sustainable, they must be economically viable, well managed, and well maintained. Design for Change: New development needs to be flexible enough to respond to future changes in use, 84  lifestyle and demography. This means designing for energy and resource efficiency; creating flexibility in the use of property, public spaces, and service infrastructure; and introducing new approaches to transportation, traffic management, and parking. (p.32) 5: Resolving The Tension Between Place and Node As a generator of travel, a transit stop a�racts activity and is a desirable place to live, open a shop, or locate a workplace. ...mixed use around a predominantly residential nighbourhood is likely to mean customer serving retail and service business such as restaurants and cafes, food stores, dry cleaning, and day care, with employment centres being targeted fro the kinds of professional services that are needed such as a�orneys, tax preparing and accounting. Understanding the station’s role in the transit system is key to planning for development around it, and one goal should be to balance the overwhelming peak hour nature of transit system travel by incorporating a mix of non work uses into most sites. General Typologies of TOD Places Ambleside fits well into the Urban Neighbourhood description: Virtually every region has a set of historic neighbourhoods that surround the downtown and provide housing, shopping,and services for employees and their families. O�en these neighbourhoods were built on extensions of the downtown street grid and were served by streetcar or heavy rail ( ferry in the case of Ambleside). Today, urban neighbourhoods provide moderate to high density housing in se�ings that are quite livable: shopping is typically located along a central shopping street ( Marine Drive) or key cross roads, schools and parks are integrated into the neighbourhood, street are designed for multiple purposes, and the frequent transit is within 5- 10 minute walk. Urban neighbourhoods form the backbone of a compact, transit-friendly region. By design, they provide a substantial amount of the regions high density and in some cases affordable housing in se�ings designed to support healthy pedestrian activity. The o�en historic nature of these neighbourhoods, combined with an active street life, allows these places to become entertainment destinations in themselves.( P.34-35) “Defining Transit Oriented Development: The New Regional Building Block” Hank Di�mar & Shelly Poticha in New Transit Town: Best Practices in Transit Oriented Development. Island Press, Washington, D.C. 2004  85  86  

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