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Unusual looking 'concrete fabric' building proposed for East Vancouver

Concrete fabric is a relatively new and uncommon architectural material.
The new Bocci headquarters in Vancouver will use concrete fabric to create an unusual look.

The proposed headquarters for a Canadian design and manufacturing company will bring a unique-looking building to East Vancouver.

Bocci, which is based in Vancouver and Berlin, creates high-end lighting installations. Its new location at 1490 E Georgia St. will reflect that with a design that involves "concrete fabric."

The proposed seven-storey building, which will house offices and manufacturing, "will make use of a newly-refined technique wherein concrete is poured over a fabric formwork," states Bocci in a development application with the city.

"This formwork would describe the building’s vaulted internal spaces and transition through to the exterior balconies, revealing complex forms visible from the building facade," explains the company.

In images submitted with the application, the design appears to include wavy or bubbly pieces of concrete, acting as the exterior of the building. In the 2D drawings, the side of the building almost appears to be a balloon animal.

"Our unparalleled experience with concrete fabric forming from past projects places us in a unique position to advance this technique on a larger scale with the aim of creating world-class architecture in Vancouver," Bocci notes.

Along with the concrete fabric design, the building will also involve plenty of plants, with vertical bird-friendly habitat, a "rooftop meadow," trees on multiple levels of the building, and vines. This will help create a "vertical garden."

The building will also contain a gallery and exhibition space, along with a restaurant. Currently, the land where the new headquarters are proposed is the site of an old truck service garage.