James Park Elementary School

Type of Building
Port Coquitlam
Grant + Sinclair Architects Ltd.
Structural Engineer
RJC Consulting Engineers
Project Owner
School District No. 43 Coquitlam
Lumber, Millwork, Paneling

James Park Elementary is an excellent example of a modern, 21st-century learning environment. It will provide current and future students, teachers and community members with a safe, comfortable building to work, learn and explore.

Ivano Cecchini, Principal Facilities Initiatives, School District 43

Project Overview

When the British Columbia Ministry of Education replaced 100-year-old James Park Elementary School in Port Coquitlam as part of the Seismic Mitigation Program, it used as much wood as possible to create a healthy indoor environment and a smaller environmental footprint. The two-storey school meets LEED Gold standard, offers elementary and full-day kindergarten and pre-kindergarten programs, and houses a variety of community-based services. Opened in October 2012, it was designed to meet the needs of students for the next 50 years. 

Wood Features

Unique Wood Roof: Elegant And Functional

Not only is the sloped butterfly wood roof pleasing to the eyes, it provides an effective drainage system with reduced silt and pollutants by having a central oversized gutter that directs rainwater to catchment pillars on either end.

Measuring Energy Efficiency

A consumption dashboard near the school's main entrance illustrates the building's energy efficiency, and offers green tips and demonstrations. Wood products moderate humidity by absorbing or releasing moisture to maintain equilibrium with the adjacent air – and studies show it can reduce operational costs.

Best Choice For Community Space

Wood is hypo-allergenic and, unlike carpeting, prevents the build-up of dust and is easier to clean; this makes it a great choice for a building like James Park Elementary School, which houses neighbourhood learning centres and is open to community activities after school hours.

Link To Nature: Open And Bright

James Park Elementary School builds on the tangible connection wood has to nature and the outdoors. Its classrooms all have windows leading to a south-facing Learning Commons, and it has an exterior covered learning patio.