Vancouver

Kitsilano, Vancouver

By
REW.ca
December 9, 2014






Kitsilano 4th Avenue Arbutus

Kitsilano, on the west side of the City of Vancouver, is known for its young, active population, its easy access to shopping and restaurants, its dazzling mountain views and, most famously, Kits Beach – one of Vancouver’s busiest beaches.

At the beginning of the 20th century, the city’s earliest settlers flocked to Kitsilano from the fashionable West End to soak up the sun and play in the surf. They pitched their tents on what was then known as Greer’s Beach, adjacent to the First Nations reserve Khahtsalano (it’s easy to see where Kits, for short, eventually got its name).

Between 1910 and 1912, the neighbourhood experienced a boom period, during which many craftsman-style houses were built. In the 1960s, Kitsilano’s homes were magnets for students and hippies because of the low rents. West 4th Avenue, the Kits main drag, was nicknamed “Rainbow Road,” and was lined with vegetarian restaurants, health-food stores, and music shops.

Today, though the tie-dye element is gone, West 4th Avenue remains home to organic-food stores and cafés, as well as Zulu Records – one of Canada’s most famous independent music sellers. While many rental suites remain, Kitsilano real estate is no longer considered cheap: Studio apartments start at about $300,000, while single-family homes can sell for several million dollars.

View Kitsilano MLS® listings for current condos, townhouses and houses or sale and upcoming open houses.

Kitsilano Amenities

Kitsilano Shopping

West 4th Avenue is the main shopping street in Kitsilano. It includes more than 200 shops, services, and restaurants. There are several large supermarkets, plus a number of smaller, independent grocery and specialty food stores. It’s a good place to shop for kitchenware and clothing, too.

Schools and Education in Kitsilano

Primary schools

Secondary schools

Independent Schools

Kitsilano Cafés and Restaurants

Kitsilano is known as the place to go for healthy, organic and vegetarian food choices. Whole Foods includes a raw and hot food bar and café, and Green’s Organic and Natural Market also offers fresh and tasty organic foods. Bishop’s, a Vancouver institution, was the first Vancouver restaurant to take local and organic food to gourmet heights. The Naam full-service vegetarian restaurant (open 24/7) is an old-timer in the Kitsilano community, and more modern eateries like Fable and Kits Daily Kitchen have embraced the farm-to-table vibe. The tiny Arbutus Coffee at the corner of West 6th Avenue and Arbutus Street is a former grocery store built in 1907, and is a charming example of Vancouver’s heritage architecture.

Kitsilano Sports and Recreation

With parks galore and Kitsilano Beach at its foot, Kitsilano is a neighbourhood for those who love playing outdoors. Kitsilano Pool – Canada’s longest (and outdoors, no less) – is a sparkling turquoise gem with a million-dollar view of downtown, Stanley Park and the North Shore Mountains (no wonder it’s the subject of so many City of Vancouver postcards). Kitsilano is also home to the Kitsilano Showboat, which has provided Vancouver with free, live, outdoor concerts and performances for 80 years.

Kitsilano Transportation

Myriad trolley and express buses move through Kitsilano on a regular basis. West 4th Avenue and West Broadway are the main routes for buses heading east toward downtown and west toward the University of British Columbia.

Kitsilano Property Statistics

Average home price1

$1,075,000

The average home price is based on a representative mix of condos, townhouses, and single family homes.

Rental information2

Average rent for an apartment

 $1,205

Private apartment vacancy rate                     0.8%    

Number and makeup of dwellings3

Total occupied private dwellings

22,555

Single family houses

7.0%

Duplexes

11.1%

Apartments/condos, under five stories

67.6%

Apartments/condos, five or more stories

6.3%

Other dwellings

8.0%

Kitsilano Demographics3

Population                                          41,375

Age

65+

10.8%

40 to 64

34.5%

20 to 39

42.1%

19 and under

12.6%

Neighbourhoods surrounding Kitsilano

1REW.ca Interactive Map, incorporating data from the Chilliwack & District Real Estate Board, Fraser Valley Real Estate Board, and Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, December 2014.

2CMHC Rental Market Report, Vancouver and Abbotsford-Mission CMAs, Fall 2013.

3Statistics Canada, Census 2011, custom order for City of Vancouver Local Areas.


Christina Newberry is a Vancouver-based writer and editor who writes lifestyle and travel stories for publications both online and in print. When she's not travelling, Christina can be found exploring Vancouver's unique neighbourhoods or puttering in her community garden plot.
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