Demo crews knock down most of iconic Red Lion at the Quay hotel, make way for mixed-use redevelopment, new hotel on Vancouver’s Columbia River waterfront

VANCOUVER — The revamping of Vancouver’s Columbia River waterfront hit another milestone last week with the demolition of the iconic Red Lion at the Quay hotel.

 

The demolition reduced most of the storied hotel, which closed in 2015 after more than 50 years in business, to a pile of rubble.

 

Still, a few pieces of the historic riverfront hotel remain: Vancouver’s new Warehouse 23 restaurant took over the Red Lion’s restaurant and ballroom space in June of 2016 and the Red Lion sign, a sort of “welcome home” sight for Vancouver locals coming back to Clark County after spending time on the Oregon side of the Columbia River, will stay in place for now.


The demolition signals that the Port of Vancouver’s long-range plans for the 10-acre Terminal 1 waterfront property are starting to take shape. Those plans call for a mix of retail, residential, hospitality and office space at the site, including a 32,ooo-square-foot public marketplace, “European-inspired” AC Hotel by Marriott to replace the Red Lion, and a pier with water features, public art and a visitor’s center.

 

On Fri., March 17, one day after the Red Lion’s demolition, the Port of Vancouver closed its 30-day public comment period for the Terminal 1 Concept Development Plan application submitted to the city in late 2016.

Demolition crews reduce much of the iconic Red Lion at the Quay hotel, which closed in 2015 after more than 50 years in business along Vancouver’s Columbia River waterfront, to a pile of rubble on Fri., March 17. Photo by Mike Schultz
Demolition crews reduce much of the iconic Red Lion at the Quay hotel, which closed in 2015 after more than 50 years in business along Vancouver’s Columbia River waterfront, to a pile of rubble on Fri., March 17. Photo by Mike Schultz

Next up in the process to turn the underused waterfront into a mixed-use jewel that will, Vancouver leaders hope, help lure tourists, entrepreneurs and residents to the Washington side of the Columbia River, is a city staff review of the public comments. After that, the city’s Hearings Examiner will hold a hearing on the Concept Development Plan and make a recommendation to the Vancouver City Council.

 

The public will have two more chances to comment on the proposed development at the Vancouver City Council’s two public hearings, which are slated to be held a few months from now, in the summer of 2017.

 

Want to keep up with the Terminal 1 redevelopment plans? Visit the Port of Vancouver’s website at www.portvanusa.com for a history of the project and to sign up for the Port’s Waterfront Views newsletter.

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About The Author

Kelly Moyer has been reporting for community newspapers since the mid-1990s, including the Newport News-Times on the Oregon Coast; the Lewistown Sentinel, a daily newspaper in central Pennsylvania; the Gresham Outlook, Wilsonville Spokesman, Sherwood Gazette and South County Spotlight newspapers in the Portland metro area; and The Reflector newspaper in Battle Ground, Wash. She also is the former managing editor of Midwifery Today, an international magazine for birth professionals. Kelly, a University of Oregon alumnus and Pennsylvania native, lives with her family in Northeast Portland.

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