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Water’s Edge: Shapes, sizes and values of oceanfront condos revealed

Lori Culbert, Vancouver Sun, May 9, 2016

Along Metro Vancouver’s tony waterfront, condominiums are no longer the poor man’s starter home.

Many are now the rich man’s mansion, minus the grass and plus the concierge.

There is a condo at the foot of Thurlow Street, with unrestricted views of Vancouver Harbour, which is more than 8,000 square feet and has five bathrooms. Its price tag is a cool $22.3 million, according to B.C. Assessment.

Condominiums represent nearly three-quarters of the 8,200 residences that line the oceanfront from Lions Bay to South Surrey, according to real estate data provided by Landcor Data Corp. and analyzed by The Sun.

In a city like Vancouver, where property is scarce and waterfront property is even more scarce, the mantra in recent years has been to build up.

Vancouver has more than 5,600 condos built along the shoreline; West Vancouver is the only other city with oceanfront condos, according to Landcor’s data, with nearly 400.

Other cities, such as Richmond, have created density along the water with duplexes and townhouses.

This map shows the location of Metro Vancouver’s oceanfront condos and attached homes. Hover over a dot for more information, such as size, value and the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. (Condo towers will show just one unit per dot because they all share the same address.)

To move the map around, under the arrow menu chose the cross with the pointy ends then click on the map and slide your mouse left or right, up or down.

While some condos are surprisingly big — nearly 200 of them are more than 3,000 square feet — some are also shockingly small: more than 260 are less than 600 square feet.

And most of them — especially those with a water view — are not cheap.

There are 200 oceanfront condos worth more than $5 million, a dozen of them worth more than $10 million.

Of the 25 most expensive duplex/townhouses on the ocean, all but one of them are on Point Grey Road in Vancouver. Their average B.C. Assessment value: $7.4 million.

And those fancy condos come with lots of luxuries, such as half a dozen bathrooms and nearly as many bedrooms each.

This map shows the most expensive condos in Vancouver and West Vancouver. The larger and more colourful the dot, the pricier the condo.

Come back to this space on Wednesday for an analysis of the postcard image of Vancouver’s oceanfront: our parks. Check out their quantity and size, and their hefty value.

In an effort to define our oceanfront, The Sun asked for help from Landcor, a New Westminster-based firm that specializes in analyzing real estate data. Landcor matched B.C. Assessment data with other shoreline data sets to create a spreadsheet of 9,518 oceanfront properties between Lions Bay and South Surrey. Landcor excluded all addresses that were separated from the coast by another property, a road or railway (with the exception of the BNSF Railway in White Rock.) The Sun then analyzed that data to produce the maps and graphics for this series.