When Canada’s leading retailer of outdoor gear set out to construct a new head office, they chose wood as the primary building material for its performance, renewability, and aesthetic qualities.
The Aberdeen, Lansdowne, Marine Drive, and Richmond Brighouse stations on the Canada Line are united by similarities in structure, glazing, and roof elements. The distinctive canopies provide protection from the Lower Mainland’s inclement weather along the length of each platform and establish a clear identity for the southern portion of the Canada Line.
The University of British Columbia’s Vancouver-based Forest Sciences Centre is, as its name suggests, an academic and research hub for the science and study of forestry, forest ecology, wood products technology, and innovative wood construction. Designed to showcase what is possible using B.C. forest products, the facility pushed the limits of wood construction at a time when building codes were still catching up to advances in wood technology and construction.
The petal structure of a native British Columbian orchid is the inspiration for this building’s curvaceous, undulating timber roof floating over rammed-earth-and-concrete walls. The complex, nearly all-wood geometry was made possible through advancements in 3-D modelling technology. Located in a fifty-five-acre conservatory in the heart of Vancouver, the building functions as a community-oriented centre for the botanical garden; it has a café, library, volunteer facilities, garden shop, offices, and classroom space for meetings, workshops, lectures, and private functions.
Located in the Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver, MONAD contains four homes ranging from 79 to 186 m2 each. The four-storey structure is built on a lot that would have traditionally held just one single-family house.
Designed to change the way people view urban living, MONAD serves as the prototype for a larger building technology platform—an innovative approach to designing modular structures. The smart building methodology balances the prefabricated paradigm against the need for comfortable, urban family housing.
Slack, a fast-growing global technology company, develops software designed to help clients ‘get more done.’ So, it stands to reason that Slack’s new headquarters in Vancouver would be designed to improve collaboration among their own team members. Architects repurposed an existing industrial warehouse building in Vancouver’s historic Yaletown district, creating a variety of gathering spaces for Slack’s staff and guests throughout the three-level space.
Located at the University of British Columbia, the Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability (CIRS) is designed to be the most sustainable building in North America. Wood was chosen as the primary building material to help meet that goal. The four-storey U-shaped building wraps around a large auditorium. It is organized into two four-storey wings, linked by an atrium, and it includes academic offices, meeting rooms and a 450-seat auditorium.
Brock Commons Tallwood House is a mass timber hybrid student residence at the University of British Columbia (UBC). The building consists of a 17-storey mass timber hybrid superstructure atop a one-storey concrete podium with two full-height concrete cores that house elevators, stairs and services conduits. The roof is made of prefabricated sections of steel beams and metal decking. It houses more than 400 students in 272 studios and 33 four-bedroom units as well as study and social gathering spaces.
The CEC is an integral part of the university's greenhouse gas reduction program with the new high efficiency water heating plant and district hot-water distribution loop replacing the pre-existing steam boiler plant constructed in 1925, reducing emissions by 33%.
The Heights is a six-storey mixed-use building in the rapidly evolving Vancouver Heights neighbourhood. The 5,600 square metre building includes a basement parking garage, street level retail and five storeys of apartments above, with a total of 85 suites. The parking and retail space are constructed in concrete, while the five storeys of residential accommodation are of wood-frame construction.