Westbank has built a practice around long-term commitments to artistry, sustainability and city-building. These commitments underlie an orientation towards projects like Woodwards, Vancouver House, Mirvish Village, Telus Garden and Oakridge – catalysts for larger change that go beyond the borders of the projects themselves. We are here to create. To provoke. To ignite. We are the vehicle for a new movement of cultural expression.

As the practice matures, we have become more ambitious. With every new project reflecting our commitment to the philosophy behind Gesamkunstwerk, or in our recent work the Japanese philosophy behind layering, the net effect is that our work becomes much more complex and far-reaching.

The core of Westbank’s mission is to create a body of work with a high degree of artistry that helps foster more equitable and beautiful cities. Westbank is active across Canada and in the United States, with projects including luxury residential, Five Star hotels, retail, office, rental, district energy systems, affordable housing initiatives and public art. Established in 1992, we are one of North America’s leading developers, with offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Seattle, Shanghai, Beijing, Taiwan, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shenzhen and over 25 billion dollars of projects completed or under development.

Sign up to the Gesamtkunstwerk eMail Newsletter to receive a selection of consistently intelligent coverage of art, architecture and design culture.

Stay informed about the Westbank projects you're interested in

June 07, 2016

Serpentine Gallery Completed in London by Bjarke Ingels

Bjarke Ingels was this year’s choice of architect to create a structure on the Serpentine Pavilion. Described by the Danish architect as “both transparent and opaque, both solid box and blob”. Located outside of Kensington Gardens, the public can both climb the exterior of it, as well as flow through the interior space. The idea behind it was […]

April 28, 2016

Designboom Talks to Kengo Kuma About Alberni

designboom was invited to the official presentation of the Westbank project in Vancouver where they spoke with Kengo Kuma about the Alberni project, and what he wanted to achieve in this, his first skyscraper in Canada. Kuma noted that Vancouver is a beautiful place. The wild nature and the beautiful ocean is in the centre of the […]

April 08, 2016

An Evening with Kengo Kuma in Vancouver

We are excited to welcome Japan’s leading architect Kengo Kuma to Vancouver on Tuesday, April 12th. For those who would like to attend but have not secured tickets, sign up in the link below for a spot on our Rush List.  Tickets will be allocated to the list 30 minutes before the start of the presentation […]

April 06, 2016

World’s First Earthquake Proof Building

Kengo Kuma, famous Japanese architect, protects Japanese office building with carbon fiber curtain. He has renovated an office building in Nomi City which is recognized as the first earthquake resistant building. It is strengthened by carbon fibre beams as seen in the picture below: The influence of Kuma’s design is the idea of braiding rope, so […]

March 02, 2016

PM Trudeau visits TELUS Garden – one of the greenest buildings in North America

At the launch of the Smart Prosperity initiative held at TELUS Garden, and attended by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, TELUS garden was awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification by the Canada Green Building Council (CAGBC). “TELUS continues to push the boundaries on sustainability through its focus on innovation, and that is even more […]

March 01, 2016

Bloor Hot Docs Cinema – The Infinite Happiness

Renowned Danish architect Bjarke Ingels tackles the question: can we foster a sense of community in buildings that house hundreds or thousands of people? Find his answer in the famous ‘8’ building in Copenhagen—an ultramodern loop of apartments whose 500 residents can traverse all nine floors by bicycle, while children attend kindergarten on the ground floor. Taking us […]

February 02, 2016

How can architecture create communities?

We see our projects as active engagements with community, as part of a dialogue between what is built, the place where it is situated and the people who live there. Our projects are conceptualized and designed with an awareness of a much larger urban narrative. Last August we announced that we had retained Bjarke Ingels […]

December 15, 2015

Art of Development

Even before you enter Fairmont Pacific Rim, you will be captivated by its exterior. Three extraordinary works draw attention – hotel architect and photographer James Cheng’s facade on perforated stainless steel creates the illusion of a forest; British artist Liam Gillick’s hypnotic, continuous thread of words stand boldly along floors five to 22; and a […]

November 04, 2015

TELUS Garden - Arch Timelapse from westbankcorp on Vimeo.

Fabricating the dynamic 300-foot wooden canopy at TELUS garden.

TELUS garden has so many opportunities to introduce new ways of developing office space with some soul. One component that we are very excited about is the 300-foot dynamic wooden canopy that defines the public plaza pavilion, connecting Telus garden to Georgia St. Watch the fabrication of one of the dozens of arches that will […]

September 18, 2015

TELUS Garden officially opens

TELUS Garden’s 22-storey, 450,000-square-foot office tower, designed by Henriquez Partners Architects and developed by Westbank, is officially Vancouver’s first LEED Platinum certified office tower with the distinction of the highest LEED score card ever to the Canada Green Building Council. One of the standout sustainable features of the development is the innovative district energy system […]

August 11, 2015

Bjarke Ingels’ BIG Arrival in Toronto

King Street West is crowded with luxury condos and five-star restaurants, but there is still room for more. Westbank Corp., along with Allied Properties REIT of Toronto, have announced plans to re-imagine a parcel of land that sits at the epicentre of the trendy strip. The design has to evolve on its own creative time. […]

June 03, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: James Cheng Recap

On Sunday June 1, 2014, the Westbank Salon Series came to an end with architect James K.M. Cheng, speaking to a full house of fans and former colleagues. Introducing Cheng was Ian Gillespie, president of Westbank Projects Corp., who spoke to both the 17,000 people that came through the Gesamtkunstwerk exhibition — Vancouverites that care […]

June 02, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Linda Fraser Recap

This past Sunday June 1, 2014, we welcomed Linda Fraser as a guest speaker. As the archivist and chief curator of the Canadian Architectural Archives (CAA), home to many significant collections including the early works of Arthur Erickson. Fraser has curated exhibitions using CAA collections, and written and presented papers on architectural photography, archival theory and practice, and architectural exhibitions. […]

May 31, 2014

GWERK Profile No. 15,394: Travis Hanks and Shirley Shen

The Westbank Salon Series has brought together a group of fascinating people week after week since its launch, including the subjects for this week’s second set of GWERK Profiles: Travis Hanks and Shirley Shen, founders of Haeccity Studio. Tell us about yourself and what you do. Shirley: We are both designers, and together we run a […]

May 23, 2014

Bold City-Building Ideas Generated at Gesamtkunstwerk Exhibition

Gesamtkunstwerk, the multi-media exhibition on architecture and city-building, developed by Westbank Projects Corp. and designed by the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), will be extended through May 30, due to popularity and overwhelming demand. In the eight weeks since opening, more than 15,000 visitors from 12 countries have looked at the thought, skills and passion that go […]

May 22, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Bruce Haden Recap

One of the most thrilling things for those behind the Westbank Salon Series is seeing the interaction between our incredibly engaging salon speakers and attendees, many of whom are dedicated regulars. Our latest guest was Bruce Haden, a partner at DIALOG and DIALOG partner-in-charge for the Vancouver House collaboration with the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG). […]

May 20, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: James K.M. Cheng

Hong Kong-born James K.M. Cheng studied architecture at the University of Washington and the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University. James worked under Bing Thom as one of Arthur Erickson‘s team on Robson Square, then founded his own practice after co-winning the 1978 design competition for a Chinese Cultural Centre for Vancouver. The firm of James K.M. Cheng Architects has since developed a global reputation for housing, focusing on […]

May 15, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Bruce Haden

Bruce Haden is a Principal Partner at the national architectural and planning firm DIALOG. He is the DIALOG Partner-In-Charge for the Vancouver House collaboration with Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) of New York. He has also been a design leader for the firm on many widely recognized projects including the globally published and awarded Nk’Mip Desert Culture Centre and the LEED Platinum-targeted UBC Student Union Building. Bruce has twice chaired the City of […]

May 02, 2014

Visitor No. 8,479: Graham Handford

Continuing our GWERK Profiles feature on the amazing contributors, influencers and people that make up Vancouver, today we introduce Graham Handford, in-house Graphic Designer at Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership Architects Designers Planners (MCM) and architectural photography aficionado. Tell us about yourself and what you do. My roots run deep in Vancouver – my great-great-grandfather Barney […]

April 28, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Scot Hein

Scot Hein is an architect who leads the City of Vancouver’s Urban Design Studio. Hein is the City of Vancouver’s Senior Urban Designer and has led the city’s high profile Urban Design Studio for the last 10 years. His current work includes the urban design and implementation of new plans for the city’s West End, […]

April 24, 2014

Visitor No. 5,386: Geoffrey Erickson

This week, we’re launching GWERK Profiles, a new feature on the amazing contributors, influencers and people that make up Vancouver. In the series, we get to know a few of the 8,000+ visitors who have come through our exhibition doors, learn about their personal GWERK experiences and continue the dialogue on why they think city-building […]

April 24, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Chris Phillips Recap

Yesterday evening, Chris Phillips — founding partner of Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg Landscape Architects (now PFS Studio) — was our salon’s guest speaker. In his dialogue exchange with exhibition curator Trevor Boddy, he spoke about Vancouver’s longstanding connection to nature and how the 2010 Vancouver Olympics was a defining moment for him, seeing citizens interact with […]

April 17, 2014

Leslie Van Duzer Salon Video Is Now Online

For those unable to attend the first of our Westbank Salon Series with guest speaker Leslie Van Duzer, director of the UBC School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, video from the evening is now available to view online on our YouTube page. To RSVP for upcoming salons, please click here.

April 17, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Chris Phillips

Chris Phillips is founding partner of Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg (now PFS Studio) Landscape Architects. A fellow of the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects, Chris Phillips is widely respected for his ability to create deeply memorable designs for a wide range of complex urban design and public open space projects. Over the past twenty years, he […]

April 14, 2014

Evolving Building Typologies

The challenges and potentials of the Beach and Howe site required fresh thinking, a radical design evolution for the shape and structural form of Vancouver residential towers. One of New York City’s architectural gems — the 1903 Flatiron Building on Lower Broadway and 23rd in Manhattan designed by Chicagoan Daniel Burnham — in one of […]

April 10, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Larry Beasley

Larry Beasley is the ‘Distinguished Practice’ Professor of Planning at the University of British Columbia, the founding principal of Beasley and Associates, an international planning and urban design practice, and was the Co-Director of Planning for the City of Vancouver during the formative years of its inner-city transformation. Beasley is a Fellow of the Canadian […]

April 10, 2014

Tower and Podium: James M. Cheng

First at the foot of Howe at Beach Street, then with subsequent developments in Yaletown and Coal Harbour, architect James K.M. Cheng invented the combination of thin residential high rise with continuous townhouse base, the “tower and podium typology” is now recognized by architects and developers around the world. Cheng’s Vancouver buildings include 888 Beach, […]

April 09, 2014

Birth of Vancouverism: Arthur Erickson

“It is time that Vancouver started thinking about its inevitable fate: a great city of ten million people.” – Arthur Erickson, 1992 (Greater Vancouver population then, 1.5 million) A visionary 1955 sketch, then two boldly inventive buildings by Arthur Erickson set our downtown city-building agenda for the next half century — signs of things to […]

April 07, 2014

Westbank Salon Series: Leslie Van Duzer

Leslie Van Duzer is a Professor of Architecture and the Director of the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of British Columbia. Originally from Berkeley, California, she came to the University of British Columbia in 2010 after teaching for two decades in architecture schools across Europe and North America. She has lectured and written […]

March 31, 2014

Looking Back at Beach and Howe

The Beach and Howe area was once a place brimming with activity around lumber, from log sorting to storage. Robertson & Hackett Sawmill Company operated just south of where the Gesamtkunstwerk exhibition space now stands, and the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) also ran south of Beach Avenue, alongside the mill for easy access to transport. […]

March 13, 2014

The Art of Development

From initiating Vancouver’s first developer-run public art competition for Bute Street alongside its Palisades and Residences on Georgia projects, to large scale urban commissions to Britain’s Liam Gillick at Fairmont Pacific Rim and Vancouver’s Stan Douglas at Woodward’s atrium, Westbank has led Canada’s development industry in integrating leading-edge contemporary art into its developments. The developer’s long-term commitment to public art includes commissions to […]

March 07, 2014

Arthur Erickson to Bjarke Ingels

  In 1955, Arthur Erickson had a vision for Vancouver. Leading up to 2018, Bjarke Ingels, BIG and local design firm Dialog have one, too: Vancouver House. The Gesamtkunstwerk exhibition, opening March 22 to the public, will showcase the evolution of Vancouver with Arthur Erickson’s original ‘Project 56’ pencil sketch, kindly lent to the exhibition by the […]


Get on the list

Stay informed about the Westbank projects you're interested in