Zeballos Elementary/Secondary School

When a rockslide threatened the existing school several years ago, the Ministry of Education and School District 84 acted quickly to commission a replacement building at a safer location on the north side of the river. The new school accommodates about 70 students from kindergarten to grade 12. It also acts as a drop-in centre for pre-school students and their parents and as a meeting place for the greater community. The school programs are arranged on a single level and include five classrooms, a kindergarten, a library, a full-size gymnasium with adjacent kitchen, and staff offices. 

Wood Use

The rainfall on the west coast of Vancouver Island is significant and influenced the design in both expected and unexpected ways. The structure has multiple steeply pitched, metal roofs that reduce the apparent scale of the building and deep eaves to protect the vertical wood siding from the weather. On the front of the building, the overhangs are supported on 150-millimetre square wood posts, creating a sheltered portico for outdoor play. Traditional light wood-frame construction was the logical choice for the main structure, as both materials and labour were regionally available. 

Download the pdf to learn more about the project.