Vancouver Public Library Rooftop Grand Opening

by ConnectLA

Public Rooftop Garden with Beautiful Views at VPL

Connect Landscape Architecture is excited to announce that the Vancouver Public Library (VPL) rooftop garden will open this weekend on Saturday September 29th with a ceremony from 10am–11am. It is open to the public. With views of the city skyline from a unique vantage point, the Phillips, Hager and North Garden provides Vancouver a publicly accessible rooftop garden within the downtown core.

This iconic building opened to the public in May 1995. The nine-storey structure was designed by the joint venture of Moshe Safdie and DA Architects after winning a design competition against 26 other architects.

The original design team of Moshe Safdie/DA and internationally acclaimed landscape architect Cornelia Hahn Oberlander had imagined and designed a rooftop garden. And yet, as is common with many projects, budgetary constraints resulted in the top two floors being leased as offices to the provincial government.

In 2015 VPL decided it was time to create a 59,000-square-foot indoor and outdoor expansion of the library on the two top floors, and bring the once-imaged rooftop garden vision to life.

The project required the removal of 8000 square feet of the upper level to create the roof garden, the opening up the floor between level 7 and level 8, and connecting those levels with 2 new escalators.

Connect worked closely with Cornelia Hahn Oberlander to ensure her vision for the new public library garden was realized. The all-inclusive garden is simply planted with hardy drought tolerant plantings.  The Rose and Lavender are reminiscent of the Ancient Gardens of Paradise from around the world in particular gardens of Pompeii.  Reading nooks are enclosed with clipped native Arbutus hedges. The new garden will be an oasis away from the busy world to contemplate and enjoy the sites of Vancouver.

Facing the beautiful views of the level 9 roof garden a huge folding glass wall allows connects the indoor space with the outdoor space.


Location: 350 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, B.C.

Owner/Developer: Vancouver Public Library

Architect: Moshe Safdie Architects / DA Architects & Planners

General Contractor: Smith Bros. & Wilson (BC)

Structural Consultant: RJC Engineers

Mechanical Consultant: Rocky Point Engineering Ltd.

Electrical Consultant: Nemetz (S/A) & Associates Ltd.

Landscape Architect: Cornelia Hahn Oberlander / Connect Landscape Architecture

In the news: Vancouver Sun

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