Case Studies

Woodward’s Redevelopment

Kornfeld LLP acted as counsel to the Westbank Group and the Petersen Group, co-developers of the innovative Woodward’s redevelopment project in Vancouver.  This project, which spanned over five years, involved the assembly of the land and rezoning, followed by the conventional, airspace and strata subdivisions of the project’s components, and the sale of certain of those componentsand the leasing of others.

Through the expertise of the firm’s Real Estate Development group led by Neil Kornfeld, Q.C., the project was able to be sequentially subdivided in order to allow for separate financing of distinct components which facilitated the project coming to fruition.

The firm’s services also involved obtaining heritage designation and transfers of density, as well as the negotiation of the non-market housing agreements and agreements with the City for the complex structuring of the public use rights for portions of the development.  Upon completion of the project, the site was home to the contemporary arts campus of Simon Fraser University, 536 market residential condominiums in two towers, 200 non-market residential units, federal and municipal government offices, child daycare as well as retail and commercial spaces.

The centre of the site is a joint public-private space and covered atrium featuring a colossal  photographic depiction of the Gastown riots of 7 August 1971.

Through the complex transactions structured for these and other clients, the mutual exchange of expertise between client and lawyer has strengthened both.  As well, through such projects invaluable relationships have been established with municipalities and other members of the real estate community.

In complex real estate developments, disputes inevitably arise among parties with varying interests, and Woodwards was no exception. Our Litigation and ADR team, under leadership of Daniel Parlow, capably and efficiently represented the interests of the project developers and related companies having ownership and head contracting responsibilities in dispute resolution, including litigation in the British Columbia Provincial Court, Supreme Court and Court of Appeal involving a number of other interested parties relating to contract law, builders’ lien law, construction law and consumer protection legislation.