New York’s Flatiron Building inspires Vancouver House


Over the past couple of months we’ve been bringing you news of the Gesamtkunstwerk exhibition (see the archive HERE) and the Vancouver House project. Designed by Bjarke Ingels, to be erected at Beach and Howe, it’s going up on an awkwardly shaped triangular piece of land. The challenges and potentials of the site required fresh thinking, a radical design evolution for the shape and structural form of Vancouver residential towers, and the Flatiron Building in New York served as inspiration.

The Flatiron Building in New York
The Flatiron Building in New York

One of New York City’s architectural gems, built in 1903, the Flatiron was built on a similar triangular site to Beach and Howe’s and had previously been passed up as un-buildable for tall buildings. Designed by Chicagoan Daniel Burnham, it’s in one of the inspirations for Vancouver House. The new technology of steel frame construction and Otis elevators made the New York building possible, while developments in computer technology, engineering and materials science make Vancouver House possible.

The Flatiron Building in New York, reimagined
The Flatiron Building in New York, reimagined

Keep on tweeting your Salon Series questions to @gwerkca using the hashtag #gwerksalon — your questions will be answered during the interactive Q&A with Larry Beasley tonight. Info HERE.

For more information on Gesamtkunstwerk, visit and follow on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.


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Bob is our founder and Editor-in-Chief. A family man and outdoors enthusiast in his 3rd decade of publishing, he steers the V.I.A. ship and hosts our 'BC Was Awesome' history TV show.