Small, independent businesses like these on the east side of the 5700 block Victoria Dr. will likely face large rent increases.

The west side of the 5100 block Victoria Dr., single-storey buildings flanked by two storey structures.

The northwest corner of Victoria Dr. and 41st Ave., all older, single-storey commercial buildings.

Increased property taxes, low interest rates and building incentives a formula for redevelopment of aging commercial strip

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Victoria Drive poised for redevelopment

Expect to see more and more of the original Victoria Drive between 32nd and 55th Avenues disappear and be replaced with four to six storey, mixed residential/commercial buildings.

Property assessments on Victoria Drive have increased on an average about twenty percent from last year. Since most commercial leases usually include building insurance, maintenance and taxes on the property (triple net) as well as rent and utilities tenants can expect a dramatic increases.

This could precipitate an increase in the number of vacancies along the strip as rents become unaffordable for many small businesses, some operating out of deteriorating retail units at least fifty years old.

If landlords cannot lease these properties they may consider selling or redeveloping them.

This option is even more attractive now with historically low interest rates and incentives from City Hall.

Even with existing C-2 zoning, development along the strip can go as high as four storeys, however under some conditions City Hall is prepared to allow for six storeys.

Such is the case with the development just getting underway at 5648-5678 Victoria Dr. across from London Drugs. When completed this six-storey building will include commercial spaces on the main floor and forty-eight rental units on the remaining five.

The developer, Bhandal Homes Ltd., is building the project under the provisions of the City of Vancouver's Rental 100: Secured Market Rental Housing Policy, which provides developers various incentives, in this case additional height, density, a reduction in the parking requirements and waiving the collection of $487,207 in development cost levies for the residential portion of the development.

According to the City staff report, the developer “estimates” that studio units will rent for $809 a month; one-bedroom units, $1,191; and two-bedroom units, $1,603 per month.

Another project is beginning to rise from the excavation on the northwest corner of 36th and Victoria Dr. where Tyko Development is building a four-story, mixed residential/commercial building.









Block 36, as the building will be called, will consist of one thousand sq. ft. of retail space on the ground floor and ten rental units including four one-bedroom, and four two-bedroom apartments on the second and third floors and two, two-bedroom penthouse suites with large balconies on the fourth floor.

Also part of this development are eight underground parking spots, two electric car charging stations and bicycle storage units.

For Block 36 commercial retail lease inquiries and residential suite rentals call 604 220 6832. 

Vic49 at 6555 Victoria Drive just south of 49th Avenue has just gone on the market offering twenty-two, "boutique homes". This attractive four-storey building has retail space available on the main floor, secure underground parking and bicycle storage. Forty-two percent of the units are apparently already sold.

Cedar 54 on the south east corner of 54th and Victoria Drive is a four-storey low-rise condo and townhouse project completed in 2012. This self-owned development has thirty-two units including one, two, and three bedroom homes with a two bedroom unit currently listed at $588,000.

Real estate agent and member of the Victoria Drive Business Improvement Assoc. Richard Lai, said, "With recent ongoing developments around Victoria Drive and the recent sale, I think the real estate market here is beginning to heat up."

The sale he's referring to is a fifty-five year-old commercial property with frontage of thirty four feet that received multiple offers and was finally sold for nine percent over asking price.

"This is an area in transition," says Executive Director for the Victoria Drive Business Improvement Assoc., Monique Koningstein.

- Rod Raglin

Updated May 15, 2017

View past and current commercial property assessments at


Corner lots, like this one at 35th and Victoria Dr. are more desirable to developers as the entrance to residential apartments on the upper floors can be from the side street leaving access to retail units on the main thoroughfare.

Tyko Development is building this four-story, mixed residential/commercial building on the northwest corner of 36th and Victoria Dr.

An Independently Owned, Neighbourhood Newspaper serving Southeast Vancouver since 1977

Publisher & Editor: Rod Raglin

Next edition SUMMER 2017

Published: w/o May 29, 2017    Deadline: May 19, 2017

Bhandal Homes Ltd. is building a six-storey project at 5648-5678 Victoria Dr. across from London Drugs that when completed will include commercial spaces on the main floor and forty-eight rental units on the remaining five.

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