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411 Railway Street, un hub dedicato alla creatività / OMB Office of Mcfarlane Biggar Architects + Designers

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In the historic, vibrant Railtown district of Vancouver, one of Canada’s most populated and multicultural cities, local firm OMB Office of Mcfarlane Biggar Architects + Designers has recently completed a six-story mixed-use building. The project is one of the first buildings to adopt the I-4 (Historic Industrial) Zoning District Schedule, which introduces a new use labeled Creative Products Manufacturing. In a city with fewer and fewer industrial spaces available, the Railtown district aims, through the CPM, to quickly become an enclave for creative product manufacturers within innovative and flexible structures, which anticipate the changing and evolutionary nature of the neighborhood.

Commissioned by Danish-born designer Niels Bendtsen, founder of Inform Interiors, one of the most important showrooms with design pieces from all over the world, of Bensen Manufacturing – a high quality furniture company based in Vancouver – and, together with Paolo Chiarot, expert manager of the furniture sector, of Bensen Italia, the new building houses, in addition to the new headquarters of Inform Interiors and Bensen Manufacturing, also a restaurant and a series of offices, retail stores and manufacturing facilities, all connected to the world of creativity and design: a real point of reference for the design community.

Flexible floor planes and generous floorto-floor heights characterize the two cores of the new building on Railway Street, Vancouver, connected by a series of suspended wooden walkways and modulated by a central atrium, which provides a social hub, while visually connecting the users’ activities with the street. Recessed storefronts along the ground floor of the two cores provide separate entrances for multiple tenants, while the large central glazed atrium, set back from the façade line, announces a generous main entrance to the building.

Two rooftop communal terraces offer the best views of the city skyline, its port and the beautiful North Shore Mountains, while another rooftop area is occupied by an urban agriculture space used by the restaurant located on the ground floor. The services of the structure also include three levels of underground parking which can be accessed from Dunlevy Avenue, on the west side of the building.

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