Interior designer Mitchell Freedland has an interesting observation in this Globe article when he was asked why Vancouver is at the forefront of condo design.
I think it’s the luck of economy and geography. In the fifties and sixties, our downtown was a dense cluster of high-rises and it was natural to go from the rental market to the condo market.
We started to develop the urban-condo concept a lot earlier than any other centre. Cities like Toronto, New York and Chicago have had great high-rise successes, but we were one of these little pioneers. It was a quiet city that kept growing vertically and suddenly everyone was paying attention.
In other words: we owe it all to the West End.
For another perspective on that eternal question – Does more space equal happiness? – check out Charles Montgomery’s take in this issue of Walrus.