Have you ever been in a Vancouver building and it’s missing the 4th and 13th floor? It’s not because the architect can’t do basic math. It’s because of superstition.
Well, no more! There will now be floors 4 … and 13, and 14, and 24, and, you get the point.
According to the Vancouver Sun, the city of Vancouver is not allowing new buildings to skip floors 13 or any floors with the number 4 in it. The latter, of course, is a strategy marketed to the Chinese buyers, as the number in Cantonese and Mandarin sounds similar to the word “death.”
That scares off those who would rather let superstition dictate their decisions, making it harder for developments to sell suites on those floors. Same goes for 13, a well-known unlucky number.
According to the Sun article, the 53-floor Burrard Place condo tower is being marketed as having a 60th floor.
The reason for all of this is not to discriminate against triskaidekaphobians and tetraphobians (those afraid of the numbers 13 and 4), but it’s for safety considerations.
Skipping floors can lead to confusion for firefighters in an emergency, having to guess and possibly misjudge whether they are on the fourth or fifth floor, etc.
The big question now is: Will certain 4th and 13th floor suites come at a discounted price?
If so — and it could make for an interesting marketing tactic — you’ll start seeing who would rather choose savings over superstition.