The walkable urban village at Coquitlam City Centre has emerged recently, with a new area of residential towers, neighbourhood offices and cafes, bridging Douglas College and an area of older housing to the vehicle-dominated Coquitlam Centre megamall.
The Regional City Centre precinct is projected to reach a population of something around 50,000 by 2041, forming a commercial and cultural hub for the northeast part of Metro Vancouver.
Coquitlam resident David Jung and I toured the tower zone in March 2015 for a previous post, and returned to look at the older residential area to the north in May 2015.
Some living opportunities on the north side of the core look not too bad. On the Fraseropolis Urban Villages index (very subjective) the City Centre scores at about the same level of livability as Burnaby Heights, or Marpole in south Vancouver. The imaginary subject of the index is me in 10 years: early 70s, still mobile and active, but looking for ways to enjoy life without driving a car. Coquitlam City Centre is not the cutest among the urban villages on this blog site: the Lougheed Highway edge is a mess of large plazas and parking lots, and the area is scored by major roadways, north-south and east-west. However, it offers a full array of commercial services, a college, an arts centre and (as of 2016) a new rapid transit line.
The walk around Lafarge Lake was pleasant, connecting by a pedestrian bridge to a piece of the Trans-Canada Trail running along Hoy Creek. It’s quiet here — too quiet, perhaps, around the ’70s condo development near Johnson Street that appears to be marked for the wrecking crew.
We looped back to the towers, at the core, which appear to be going for a Yaletown feel. David and I enjoyed our lunch at the Urban Gate, an Iranian-flavoured pub attached to a bright new produce store.
[This is #28 in our Urban Villages series, not counting ringers and repeat visits.]