Archive for the ‘Viewpoint’ Category

Interview

Wednesday, April 18th, 2018

Aura Lee MacPherson on radiant wall heating


Aura Lee MacPherson of MacPherson Engineering in Regina says they have been providing creative engineering solutions for radiant heating and cooling for all types of buildings for years through their Radiant Link system [www.radiantlink.ca], and have now engineered a simplified, economical system which uses the thermal mass of concrete basement walls.

(more…)


Viewpoint

Wednesday, April 18th, 2018

Living buiding performance on a budget

Launched in 2006, the Living Building Challenge is a rigorous certification program that sets absolute performance standards and requires proof that they have been achieved before awarding certification. There are seven categories [or petals], most comprising several imperatives, all of which must be met if recognition for that petal is to be achieved. Full recognition requires a building to meet the imperatives of all seven petals; partial recognition requires a building to achieve three petals, one of which must be Water, Energy or Materials.

By James Hettinger, OAA

(more…)


Viewpoint

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017

For the sixth consecutive year, a graduate from the British Columbia Institute of Technology’s Architectural Science program has won the national CaGBC Student Project Award. This year’s winner, Andrew Martins, joins Ashley Hu [2016], Jason Reid [2015], Alison Walker [2014], Albert Lam [2013] and Simon Vangrootheest [2012]. The objective of the Award is “to recognize a student project that demonstrates leadership, innovation, inspiration and a creative vision for the future of sustainable design in the field of green building and communities” - a national challenge where this small degree program consistently succeeds.

By Jody Patterson and Matthew Woodruff (more…)


Viewpoint

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

An LCA Pioneer:
The whole story

A pioneer in bringing life cycle assessment [LCA] to the North American construction sector, the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute celebrates a 20th anniversary this year.

By VANESSA SALAZAR


(more…)


Interview with

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

Alex Speigel


Alex Speigel, partner at Windmill Developments, believes that the greenest buildings are actually conversions. With Arch Lofts [www.archlofts.com], they’re transforming a century-old church into condos in a downtown area of Toronto known as the Junction Triangle.
(more…)


Viewpoint

Tuesday, April 4th, 2017

Embed the value of housing affordability in sustainability

A lone voice from Vancouver issued a challenge at the Greenbuild #2 conference in Pittsburgh in 2003: “What will the US Green Building Council do to address the fact that the right building in the wrong place is the wrong building?” This was one of many factors that led USGBC to develop LEED for Neighbourhood Development [LEED-ND] to guide
sustainable community development, and Vancouver’s False Creek Olympic Village was one of the first recipients of LEED-ND Platinum.

By Graham McGarva

(more…)


Viewpoint: What Makes a Home Livable to You?

Friday, August 19th, 2016

The way we live is changing. As both an architect and a resident of Vancouver, I am regularly confronted with how our cities are changing through urban densification and shifting demographics, to accessibility and affordable housing. I think about the smaller units we are building as a response to this change, and I find myself considering livability as an  important factor in the design of multi-family units.

By Kim Barnsley

(more…)


Viewpoint article

Wednesday, March 16th, 2016

Sustainable Design of Airports

It has been a little over one hundred years since the Wright brothers took to the air, and our almost-miraculous ability to travel by plane has made flight an integral part of the world economy. As a result, from time to time Aviation is the subject of headlines stating the “great but invisible harm” it causes to the environment. Right? Not really. According to the EPA, in the United States aircraft of all kinds are estimated to emit between 2.4% and 3.4% of total greenhouse gas emissions, and the IPCC estimates that Aviation worldwide is responsible for around 3.5% of anthropogenic climate change.

BY STANIS SMITH, STANTEC

(more…)


Social Sustainability in Practice

Wednesday, September 16th, 2015

Today, it is the task of averting drastic climate change that might be described as an experiment – a vast social experiment in decision-making and democratic action. Success in that endeavor will not be determined primarily by large techno-logical fixes, though many will be needed along the way. Just as decisive to the outcome is whether our social relationships, cultural beliefs, and political customs will allow for the kind of changes that are necessary. That is why the climate crisis is as much a social as a biophysical challenge, and why the solutions will have to be driven by a fuller quest for global justice than has hitherto been tolerated or imagined.

- Andrew Ross, from Bird on Fire

(more…)


Interview with Julie Scarcella

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

Julie Scarcella, founder of EcoSpex [www.ecospex.com] has been on a seven-year mission to create and launch her company: an on-line tool to help design and construction professionals quickly find sustainable, energy-efficient and heathy products.

(more…)