Is Olympic Village the Hottest New Neighbourhood in Vancouver?

Tap & Barrel in Olympic Village. Photo credit: Canadian Veggie | Flickr

It’s been more than two years since I first wrote about the Village on False Creek – the brand new neighbourhood created from the 2010 Olympic Village.  And for much of that time, the much-hyped Village was pretty much a ghost town.

After the athletes moved out, few new tenants moved into all those gleaming new condo towers.  The original site developer went into receivership.  The thriving community promised in all of the real estate brochures never materialized.

But you just knew it was a matter of time.  How could a waterfront community situated a stone’s throw from downtown Vancouver not take off?

Well, I think it’s now safe to say that the Village on False Creek has officially turned a corner.  It could just be the hottest new neighbourhood in the city.   Here’s why.  550 of the 737 units in the mid-rise buildings that make up the neighbourhood have been bought, according to a recent article in the Vancouver Sun.  There are people on the streets and new restaurants and shops.  And the new sea wall is bustling with walkers and bikers most days.

The latest addition to the community is London Drugs, which announced its grand opening last week.  That follows the opening of a glitzy new Urban Fare supermarket earlier this summer.   The two anchors join a thriving little retail community in the neighbourhood, which also includes Terra Breads and Legacy Liquor – the largest private liquor store in the entire province (If you’re a craft beer lover, you’ve got to check this place out).

Photo credit: Canadian Veggie | Flickr

Of course, the gorgeous Creekside Community Centre has been there from the very start – offering Vancouverites a waterfront venue to hit the weights, shoot some hoops or get their downward-facing dog on.  And now, the Village on False Creek even has a nightlife option.  This summer, the 12,000-square-foot Tap and Barrel opened, serving up dozens of craft beers on tap and offering two levels of patios overlooking False Creek and downtown Vancouver.

For a long time, Olympic Village was Vancouver’s favourite whipping boy – the object of all kinds of ridicule and jokes about mismanagement.  But I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that – after a two year wait – some of the original promise of the neighbourhood is finally being fulfilled.

Have you been to the Village on False Creek (a.k.a. Olympic Village) lately?  What do you think of the neighbourhood? 

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8 Responses to Is Olympic Village the Hottest New Neighbourhood in Vancouver?

  1. Pingback: Owning Near the Village on False Creek May Be Smartest Investment You Make — Main Street Real Estate

  2. Thanks for sharing & posting – just passed thru “The Village” (HATE that generic sounding title) and was lamenting the rebranding & stripping away of the previous “Olympic Village” name it used to have. I don’t care What controversy revolved around The financial fiasco. All I know is I am so damn proud of the way Vancouver majestically put on a great winter Olympics to The World – with hardwork’g Canadian athletes (wowing us with their stunning performance) + The Architects & Engineers who pulled off an amazing feat of ne’er done before Platinum LEED Community – ALL standing as a lasting legacy. So thanks for using the title OlympicVillage again … means a lot to me. ;)

  3. Steve M

    As Yoda would say, one new pub and a London Drugs opening does not the hottest new neighbourhood one make.

    • UselessComment

      Awesome, I’m sure we all will trust the judgement from someone that “talks” like Yoda

  4. The Village has really turned around, it’s starting to buzz with life and community… and it will only get better. I’m with Tap & Barrel and have been observing it for the past three years and am very pleased with the progress, and the organic growth that we’re seeing. It’s a magnificent setting… neighbours are great, it’s becoming self sustained as a community with LD, Urban Fare, Terra, Village Cleaners, a doctor/dentist office soon, TD Bank, Tap & Barrel, and soon a pet store, plus more. the perimeter is developing, it’s very exciting! I agree that it’s the hottest new neighbourhood in Vancouver without a doubt!

  5. DJ

    I think street, seawall, and garden maintenance need to improve in the area. The gardens are messy, weeds are growing in too many places, and some benches are looking plain ugly. There seems to have been a lot of neglect. This must change.

  6. i’ve been there a bunch of times just to hang out and check out the scenery.. its probably one of the most ideal and scenic locations in all of downtown due to the fact that its across the water from bc place and science world (completely unobstructrd).. which means for some amazing photos. i also went to tap and barrel about a week after it opened.. the burgers were delicious, the beer was cold
    and the views from the balcony were very enjoyable.. its awesome. itll take some time for the neighborhood to grow and get busy, but theres definitely value there. they should
    open a starbucks there (or two) :)

  7. On a warm summer night before the Tap and Barrel officially opened, I wandered to the plaza, with it’s giant sparrows and surreal lighting and I was blown away. It seemed there was no one there to experience it. The setting was simply magical. Two weeks later, the whole place was transformed, pulsing with revelers loving the locale. The Olympic Village/Plaza is truly special and has to be on the list of must see & do areas in a long list of great spots this city has to offer. What a treat!