Urban Design
SIngle-family Houses
Inventions Development Planning Commercial
105 W18th Ave Vancouver B.C. Canada V5Y2A6  P 604.338.7400  F 604.736.2402  info@katzarchitecture.com
False Creek.
Two important considerations were to provide every unit with a water-view and to protect views from the City Hall area. The long, narrow, stepped, high-rises at right angles to the view, accomplished both.
A disproportionately large amount of "water-space" for harbors was provided and the existing waterfront walkway from False Creek was extended to create a continuous "harbor walkway. The integration of green-space, harbors and buildings, with pedestrian access only, created a unique urban environment.
The project won the design competition for the development of the East Phase of False Creek in Vancouver, B.C.
Wailea on the Island of Maui in Hawaii is recognized as one of the world's premier holiday resorts. Built on 1600 acres of spectacular beach-front property, the development presented an opportunity to provide excellence in Urban Planning and to utilize the site so that every building would benefit from the tropical surroundings.
We chose the name "Wailea", which means "City of Flowers", in order to reflect the planning as an extension of the natural beauty of the Island.
The shopping areas, hotels, beach-front, sports and entertainment facilities have been planned as activity hubs, tied together within a framework of roads, pedestrian paths and green-space. This allows maximum flexibility for the developers to fill in the framework with buildings, whilst maintaining the integrity of the environment.
Unusually large amounts of land have been set aside as green-space, including the entire beach-front which is protected by a large building setback. This setback helped to create a beach which National Geographic named, "Best Beach in America, 1999".
In addition to their use as recreation, the golf-courses were utilized as part of the public greenspace system. The fairways were strung out linearly to create thousands of feet of “fairway” housing.
Greentree Village.
This 500-unit housing development on 50 acres in Burnaby, B.C. was designed as a comprehensive "Village", with varying housing types, community-centre, school, playgrounds, parks and playing fields. Much of the original forest-setting has been retained.
A network of green-spaces, pedestrian  system and roads are utilized to create a planning framework for the village. Also included are the first "Zero Lot-line" houses in B.C.
A main road runs the length of the village, with all the feeders as short cul-de-sacs, connected to the green-space system. This creates a very quiet, intimate "village" atmosphere of cul-de-sacs and green-spaces filled with children playing in safe environments.
Greentree Village has been widely acclaimed as a successful urban community which provides an excellent living environment with more useable open space than the traditional single family subdivision.
The planning principles became the subject of an in-depth CMHC research project which was published and distributed to municipalities across Canada as an example of excellence in urban planning.
Marine Garden Village.
This 70 unit rental project in Vancouver, B.C. was a successful urban housing experiment which proved that the typical "3-storey walkup" could be replaced by compact townhouses whilst achieving the same density, i.e. 45 units/acre.
The townhouses all are at grade with large private gardens and are accessed via a landscaped circulation system comprising courtyards, playgrounds and pedestrian pathways. Parking is located underground.
Marine Garden Village is targeted to families and   includes two and three-bedroom units. It provides the first on-site day-care facility for a rental project in Vancouver.
Although the project is adjacent to a high-traffic artery, the planning has created a very quiet and secluded atmosphere.
Three Townhouse Projects.
These 50-70 unit townhouse projects in Coquitlam, B.C. are planned with a wide variety of unit sizes and types and have been designed to cater to families. 

The projects incorporate comprehensive road, pedestrian and green-space systems which enable the units to gain full benefit from the mountain-side setting and to ensure unobstructed views for all. 

Traditionally, developments of this type are comprised of rows of townhouses. In these projects, however, every unit is an "end unit" with three outside walls.
Selected proposals as Chief Planner of Grosvenor.
Two New Towns.
Two 2000 acre parcels, in the District of Langley, B.C., were planned as Canada's first New Towns. The planning comprised extensive use of a green-space and man-made lake system. Shopping, educational, sporting, entertainmnent and cultural facilities were designed as activity hubs, linked with a road and pedestrian system, to create a highly live-able urban environment.
University Town.
Instead of the usual “University Campus”, this proposal on the Island of Oahu in Hawaii, was to create a "University Town". Much in the spirit of the great old English Universities such as Oxford and Cambridge, students and residents would live, study and work together. The University would be permitted to place their teaching and residential buildings on sites of their choice and the facilities would expand with the town. A detailed analysis of buildable and non-buildable land, led the latter to be set aside as greenspace. This was integrated into the road and pedestrian system, culminating in finger-shaped promontories jutting out into the ocean, with a road in the middle and waterfront buildings on either side.
Town Plan for the District of North Vancouver.
To create a balance between development and preservation, the plan included a sustainable green-space framework in which all existing treed areas would be retained. This would allow future generations to choose the amount of treed lands they wished to retain.  All land unsuitable for building e.g. ravines, poor soil etc. were added as green-space and golf course fairways were strung out linearly to provide "Fairway Housing". The proposal was a forerunner of contemporary pro-environment and sustainability thinking.