One minute from “Vancouver”

One Madison Avenue

The condos of One Madison Avenue (in Burnaby, not Manhattan, sorry folks) have been on the market for some time now. Condo king Bob Rennie has yet to sell all units so the ads still find themselves languishing in the homes pages of the Vancouver Sun. Also known as OMA, One Madison Avenue has a special place in my heart for its wonderfully shameless claim of being “one minute from Vancouver.” While technically true, a more accurate description would be one minute from the Vancouver-Burnaby border (the aptly named Boundary Road) which is effectively 25 minutes from downtown Vancouver and far less appealing. OMA also resides near a corporate industrial park where your “neighbourhood” consists of 120,000 square feet of movie studio production space. Ah, experience the amenities!

20 Responses to “One minute from “Vancouver””

  1. thirdparty Says:

    Wow, so bitter. Were you neglected as a child?

  2. VHB Says:

    Great site! I like it a lot. Keep up the work.

  3. condohype Says:

    Bitter? Dad, is that you?

    Seriously though, thanks for visiting the site.

  4. mohican Says:

    Great site. Very witty! I’ll be adding it to my blogroll.

  5. blueskies Says:

    not bitter…. more like “observant”

    expansive view of the Lougheed Highway
    high atop yet another mall spitting distance from
    a graveyard… gotta love it!

  6. i dont getit Says:

    hey, it is your site, preach on

    but i dont get the bitterness (i am a different person than the guy above) seriously . a few things to consider

    1. one minute to vancouver. what is wrong or misleading? the agent is saying how far it is from vancouver, not downtown. you seem to think this is devious, the rest of the world understands that you are paying less for a condo (or should be, no idea on the pricing of OMA) in burnaby than you would across boundary in vancouver. so pay burnaby, live vancouver.

    2. the agent is paid to sell condos for the owner. why does it confuse you to see ads in the paper?

    3. why am i writing this and potentially helping you become a talked about site?

  7. scoop Says:

    “Oma” is the informal Dutch and German word for grandma. It is also a medical suffix meaning a swelling or tumor, e.g. carcinoma, glaucoma.

    So in my mind “OMA” is a good name for a retirement home or a cancer treatment centre. Either way I would expect the building to smell like antiseptic cleanser. Perhaps this explains the slow sales.

  8. djmk Says:

    for the longest time i thought this building was for seniors. oma in dutch and german means grandma.

  9. DaMann Says:

    In response to I don’t get it.

    You might call it clever advertising some people think it’s very misleading.

    Take for instance the new Fairmont hotel in downtown Vancouver, billed as the ONLY 5 star Hotel in Coal Harbour. Hmmm right accross the street is the Pan Pacific and it is indeed a 5 start hotel. But guess what? It’s on the other side of the street so technically not coal harbour. Both hotels are pretty much accross the street from each other yet Fairmont bills itself as the only 5 star hotel in Coal Harbour. You might think it’s clever. I think it’s damn near fraudulant.

  10. djmk Says:

    and one more thing.
    anybody that drives down gilmore past home depot regularly knows that the area is prone to flooding. I would hate to wake up one morning and watch my stuff that i put neatly into storage float past the gilmore skytrain station.

  11. CSB Says:

    You gotta hand it to Bob Rennie, because he’s been shoveling this to us for a long time.

  12. mk-kids Says:

    This is an awesome site! Thanks for the laughs…

  13. mk-kids Says:

    The “one minute” pitch cracks me up… not unlike Newport Village ads that tout “20 minutes from Vancouver” – actually its 25 minutes on the train but if you factor in the time it takes you to get to the train & wait for it, I’m guessing 40-50 minutes is probably closer to the reality of most peoples commute.

  14. Jaymo Says:

    It’s interesting how people misconstrue honesty, a sober opinion and common sense with bitterness. There is some very funny writing on here. Keep up the good work.

  15. Matt Says:

    Love this blog. Keep the posts coming!

  16. skippy Says:

    Yes, these “X minutes from Y” ads are always amusing. Trying to play off of the mental image that it is only 1 minute from downtown, but instead you only just get across the border into Vancouver in that time. And honestly, you can probably find a better condo in Vancouver proper for the same amount of money.

    This reminds me of an amusing Craigslist post I saw the other day, where a condo in Chilliwack was “only 15 minutes from Aldergrove!” A quick check on Google Maps showed that the distance between the closest Aldergrove and Chilliwack freeway exit/entrances was still about 35 km… so you’d have to average 140 km/h in order to make it in that time (not counting however long it took one to get to the highway in the first place).

  17. Jaymo Says:

    Not to mention the fact that if you need to use proximity to Aldergrove as a selling point it makes you wonder what the downside could be……

  18. Commute time like never before « condohype Says:

    […] math. Commuting estimates always warrant special attention when they come from condo pitchmen as best demonstrated by Bob Rennie and the infamous “one minute from Vancouver” campaign for OMA. For Collage, we’re […]

  19. Happycommuter Says:

    I personally am no fan of Bob Rennie, but nowadays Burnaby is pretty the only option if you want to be close to Vancouver and not in Surrey (yuck), Richmond (going to sink in an earthquake) or North Van (rainy all the time). Besides, I know Vancouverites are all so snobbish about how great Vancouver is, but in Burnaby you can get an 850 sq ft brand new place for under $400k, as opposed to a 500-600 sq ft 1 bedroom cubicle for $450 plus. It’s only a 10 minute skytrain ride to downtown from there, and you are very central to some great shopping (Coquitlam Centre now has H&M yay!). Vancouver is great, but, I’m sorry, it is only accessible to the rich or renters. I grew up living in both, and I loved the burbs, lots of nice parks, good shopping and coffee shops and great parties!

  20. Trashing Tamarind Westside « condohype Says:

    […] thought Rennie gave us big laughs with one minute from Vancouver. Sorry King Bob. You just lost the comedy […]

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