Camas Gardens Supported Housing

Type of Building
Health, Residential
3,166 sq. m.
Low Hammond Rowe Architects
Structural Engineer
RJC Consulting Engineers
Construction Manager
Ledcor Group
Project Owner
Pacifica Housing Advisory Association
Lumber, Plywood, Millwork, Siding

We responded to the diversity of architectural typologies in the neighbourhood with a solution that is durable and welcoming, restores an important piece of the city fabric, and conveys a sense of warmth and optimism.

Paul Hammond, Architect Chow Low Hammond Architects Inc.

Project Overview

Award-winning Camas Gardens near downtown Victoria proves that government-funded housing can be low cost without sacrificing quality and beauty. Opened in 2011, elegant use of western red cedar in the façade and landscaping delivers appearance and environmental benefits, and is a warm addition to the neighbourhood. Camas Gardens Supported Housing, managed by the nonprofit Pacifica Housing Advisory Association, replaced an older 14-unit social housing development. The mix of three- and four-storey wood-frame construction made better use of the site, with 44 units and integrated services for people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Wood Features

Natural Choice, Clear Benefits

Light wood-frame construction is ideal for Camas Gardens because wood is an economical construction material with long-term durability. Building the exterior wood-frame walls off site reduced construction waste and construction time.

Improved Safety: Fire And Seismic

A wood-frame double wall with fire-rated gypsum board provides a durable firewall system while delivering acoustic separation. Double-sided plywood walls provide controlled resistance to the shear loads within the building, offering protection from earthquakes.

Wood Veneer Cabinets: Durable, High-Quality

The millwork in each suite and administration area is finished in a warm birch wood veneer. Research shows wood interiors reduce stress by creating a comforting and supportive environment, making it an excellent choice for supportive housing.

Sound-Absorbing Composite Floor

The hybrid floor system with wood framing, gypsum wall board on resilient metal channels in the ceiling, and concrete topping with radiant floor heating coils, absorbs vibration.

A Beautiful Addition To Neighbourhood

The quality western red cedar tongue-and-groove wood cladding and soffits that wrap the exterior façade on the second and third levels look great, and offer a contrast to the masonry and fibre cement board cladding.