Brivia Group plants its flag in Vancouver as it aims to build Curv, the world’s tallest passive house building

The Montreal-based company is making inroads in B.C.

If you’re a B.C. resident and have never heard of Brivia Group, you’d be forgiven.

Founded in 2000 in Montreal, Brivia is a real estate development and investment company that has built a strong brand in Quebec, mostly through its building of high-end condos. Now, the developer is turning its eyes to Vancouver with Curv, a 60-storey monolith that is slated to become the largest passive house building in the world. Construction is set to start at 1075 Nelson St. in 2024 and Curv will have 501 homes, including 102 social housing units and 40 market rental units.

“In 2020, we had opportunity to look at acquiring this project and thought it would be a great opportunity given what it represented at the time,” says Vincent Kou, Brivia’s chief investment and development officer. “It was a great opportunity for the city, to have this iconic project right in the middle of Vancouver as a landmark for generations to come.”

Kou admits that other cities are a bit lighter when it comes to development regulations. “Vancouver usually takes a bit longer, there’s more planning involved—especially in key downtown areas.” Kou’s understanding is that the bid started around 2015 with a previous owner. “When we took it over, the development had already passed through some hurdles.”

The deal effectively was closed in April 2021. “So far, the market response has been positive,” he says. “We have to make sure that the pace, the momentum, continue to be what we want it to be. Vancouver has different requirements than other cities in terms of the green components and the energy saving components—they’re much more advanced.”

Brivia also has another B.C. property in West Vancouver that’s in the early stages of zoning. Kou says that the company will continue to work with the government on that, but that its focus right now is on Curv.

“At Brivia, we’re truly engaged and committed to community,” he says. “We want to be in B.C. for a long time. We’re starting with Curv. But our goal is to be anchored within the community in B.C. for a long time. We’re proud to bring the Brivia brand into the B.C. market.”