New Document Six, 2017 Edition aims to reduce risk for architects and clients

By Don Ardiel, MRAIC
RAIC Director of Practice Support

What is Document 6?
RAIC Document Six is the standard form of contract in Canada for the delivery of architectural services. It is comprehensive in scope, provides clarity in role definition and responsibilities, and provides for flexibility in project definition. It presents a balanced approach in respecting the interests of both the client and the architect.

Why use it?
The use of RAIC Document Six, Canadian Standard Form of Contract for Architectural Services reduces project risk for both the client and the architect. At the beginning of a project, the client, and architect benefit from walking through the articles of Document Six in a process where each educates the other to responsibilities, limitations, and con-straints. Project risk is reduced through increased understanding of expectations and clarity of roles. The RAIC hopes that the new Document Six will result in broad acceptance by both clients and architects. 

Why was the 2006 edition updated?
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of supplemental conditions that clients have added to the standard form of contract that has substantially increased the risk to the architect. In some cases, these conditions result in the loss of professional liability insurance coverage, thereby depriving the client of the very protection they seek. In several provinces, an architect signing a contract that results in the loss of insurability may lead to a finding of professional misconduct.

The development of Document Six, 2017 Edition, was focussed on presenting a balanced approach to the interests of both client and architect and placing the manage-ment of project risk in the hands of the party most capable of managing it.
How was it updated?

Document Six, 2017 Edition was developed by the RAIC Practice Support Committee with representation from both architects and clients. The committee sought broad input from over 30 prominent stakeholder groups, including client-owners, provincial regula-tors, and insurers.

When will it be available?
The new Document Six and the Guide to Document Six will be available in both official languages from the RAIC website under Professional Resources on March 22, 2017.

Document Six and the accompanying Guide are free to all and can be downloaded from the RAIC website. However, the use of Document Six in a contract situation requires that authorization seals be affixed to each copy of the contract. Authorizations seals may be purchased from the RAIC with a discount for RAIC members.

The 2006 edition of Document Six will still be available on the RAIC website.
Don Ardiel, MRAIC, an architect based in London, ON, joined the RAIC in 2016 as Director of Practice Support. Among his responsibilities, he oversees the RAIC Syllabus Program and the Canadian Handbook of Practice. He also supports multi-industry groups such as the Federal Real Property Advisory Committee and the Construction Industry Consultative Committee.

Our oversight: King Edward Villa

In the article on the six-storey mixed-use King Edward Villa in Vancouver published in the Winter 2016/17 issue of SABMag, our apologies for neglecting to include the Project Credts as follows:

  • Owner/Developer: Richard Wong
  • Architect: GBL Architects
  • Structural Engineer: Bryson Markulin Zickmantel
  • Mechanical Engineer: SRC Electrical Engineer
  • Construction Manager: Performance Construction
  • Wood Prefabricator: Mitsui Homes
  • Code Consultant: Protection Engineering

New book: Making Urban Nature

Making Urban Nature, by Dutch publisher,, is an inspirational book of examples about nature-inclusive designing in European cities. It calls for the integration of nature in the designs of buildings and outdoor spaces and includes practical examples and design suggestions.

Because nature-inclusive design is still in its infancy, very little has yet been published on the subject.  Making Urban Nature provides an introduction to the pioneering practice of nature-inclusive design on the basis of both theory and practice. The research is conducted by Bureau Stadsnatuur [Urban Nature Rotterdam], the Dutch National History Museum of Nature and funded by the Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie [Creative Industries Fund NL].

The authors, Piet Vollaard, Jacques Vink and Niels de Zwarte, see nature as an integral part of the urban organism and highly important to the quality of life in the city, which is fully expressed in the book. 

Paperback, 256 p, 20 x 25 cm, 300 illustrations, ISBN 978-94-6208-317-2.

Passive House supplier, Pinwheel, launches new site

The new web site,, asks, “Why are we building the equivalent of a hoodie with a thin rain jacket on top for our houses when we really need a thick breathable down jacket?  We design and build for Canada. Vapour tight on the inside, and breathable on the outside, just like a Gore-Tex jacket.” As a supplier of a building system and components for Passive House construction, Pinwheel backs up its building philosophy as expressed on its new web site with drawing details, construction photos and a project portfolio; and promises more information to come as a resource to complement the national site:

2017 Canadian Green Building Awards winners to be presented May 30, Vancouver

The winning projects of the 2017 Canadian Green Building Awards will be presented on May 30 in Vancouver to kick off the open the as part of the CaGBC’s  annual national conference, Building Lasting Change, which runs from May 30 to June 1 []. This is a great occasion to see some of the most leading-edge, high-performance buildings in Canada and to network with design professionals. For details:



Royal Architectural Institute of Canada

Planning for Festival of Architecture well advanced for Spring 2017

As the country joins together in the celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary of confederation, The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada [RAIC] and the Ontario Association of Architects [OAA] have partnered to present the 2017 Festival of Architecture in Ottawa May 24-27.

Under the theme of Architecture 150, the Festival offers an excellent opportunity to obtain continuing education credits, network and socialize with friends and colleagues. The four-day event takes place at the Westin Hotel, steps from Parliament Hill, the ByWard Market and the Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

“We invite architects from across Canada and international guests to join us in the nation’s capital,” says RAIC President Ewa Bieniecka, FIRAC. “The 2017 RAIC/OAA Festival of Architecture will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you won’t want to miss.”
Adding to the sense of this historic occasion, the RAIC will also mark the 110th anniversary of its founding as Canada’s national architecture association.

“Canada, 50 years ago, embarked on a vision for the country in which architecture played a major role in defining our culture,” adds OAA President Toon Dreessen, FRAIC. “Now, as we celebrate the sesquicentennial, it’s time to reflect as well as look towards our future.”

Registration opens in March at Delegates are urged to book soon as rooms are filling up fast. The national capital region’s many attractions including award-winning restaurants, historic sites, national museums and must-see architecture by Moshe Safdie, Arthur Erickson, and Ernest Cormier.

The Festival kicks off Wednesday, May 24 with an opening party at the Canadian War Museum. Over the next days, delegates will have the opportunity to participate in more than 90 sessions and architectural tours to earn professional continuing education credits.
The RAIC Emerging Practitioners chapter whose mission is to connect and strengthen the voice of interns across Canada and help them on the path to licensure, will host events for interns. The OAA Admission Course will be held during the Festival, a mandatory requirement for licensure for interns in Ontario.

Festival is also time to appreciate high achievement. The RAIC College of Fellows formally recognizes members and distinguished laypersons who have made outstanding contributions to the profession. The College will induct new members on Thursday, May 25 at the Canadian Museum of History. Graduates of the RAIC’s Syllabus Program will also be present to receive their diplomas.

The President’s Dinner and Awards Gala on Friday, May 26, will celebrate excellence in the built environment; recipients of the RAIC’s and OAA’s various awards will be in attendance to accept their honours and be recognized for their outstanding projects.
On the last day, the RAIC will host the first International Indigenous Architecture and Design Symposium on Saturday, May 27 at the Wabano Centre, exploring best practices in Indigenous design, architecture, and place-making.

Come learn, connect and celebrate at the 2017 Festival of Architecture. Details at

All new categories announced for the 2017 Canadian Green Building Awards

In recognition of the quality and variety of projects now being submitted to the Canadian Green Building Awards, a program of Sustainable Architecture & Building [SABMag] and the Canada Green Building Council, the awards advisory board has decided to recognize excellence in the following project categories.

The 2017 Awards program will launch January 3, 2017 with judging on March 24.
1. Residential [small]
Open to new or renovated buildings less than 600m2 in area, of which a minimum of 75% is dedicated to residential uses.
2. Residential [large]
Open to new or renovated buildings [or groups of related buildings] greater than 600m2 in area, of which at least 75% is dedicated to residential uses.
3. Commercial/Industrial [small]
Open to new or renovated buildings up to 2,000m2 in area, of which more than 75% is dedicated to commercial or industrial uses.
4. Commercial/industrial [large]
Open to new or renovated buildings [or groups of related buildings] greater than 2,000m2 in area, of which at least 75% of the floor area is dedicated to commercial or industrial uses.
5. Institutional [small]
Open to new or renovated buildings up to 2,000m2 in area, of which more than 75% is dedicated to institutional uses.
6. Institutional [large]
Open to new or renovated buildings [or groups of buildings] greater than 2,000m2 in area, of which at least 75% of the floor area is dedicated to institutional uses.
7. Mixed Use
Open to new or renovated buildings [or groups of related buildings] of any size, in which no individual use exceeds 75% of the overall floor area.
8. Existing Building Upgrade
Open to buildings of any size or type in which the primary focus of the work has been to enhance the performance or extend the life of an existing structure.
9. Interior Design
Open to interior design projects of any size or type. Entries in this category are required to respond only to the submission criteria appropriate to the project.

Winning projects will be officially announced in an awards ceremony at the CaGBC National Convention in Vancouver, and published in the Summer 2017 issue of SABMag. All submitted projects will be considered for publishing in SABMag.
To receive an Entry Kit, register [without obligation] at

New site a resource on Canadian passive building

The new site [] from Passive Buildings Canada shares Passive House knowledge and experience to assist Canadians in reducing building energy consumption and carbon emissions. The passive building professionals behind the site believe that all Canadian buildings will be durable, energy efficient and comfortable through the use of Passive House principles.  The site offers information based on  rigorous, practical building science, and seeks to connect with other organizations to strengthen the low-energy-building movement.

The site features:
• Gallery: projects from across Canada meeting criteria of low-energy buildings
• Haus Talks: webinars on topics of interest to  members
• Connections to other like-minded groups.
• Committees by members for members: focussing on current issues and concerns, such as changes in Building Codes.

Consider participating and contributing to post a project to the Gallery, suggest a Haus Talk topic, help connect to another group or create/join a committee.

Stay informed with SABMag e-News

Add your name to the distribution list of the SABMag e-News. Distributed monthly, the SABMag e-News keeps you up-to-date on news, seminars and events related to high-performance building, notifications about the Canadian Green Building Awards, and more.

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Interface awarded for sustainable oceans management

Flooring manufacturer, Interface, has been awarded a U.S. 2016 Secretary of State Award for Corporate Excellence [ACE] in Sustainable Oceans Management, by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs.

The award is given to companies who contribute to the growth and sustainable development of the local economies in which they work. Interface was recognized for its efforts around decreasing marine pollution in coastal areas of the Philippines while improving the lives of local communities – evidenced by its Net-Works initiative.

Net-Works was designed to tackle the growing environmental problem of discarded fishing nets in some of the world’s poorest coastal communities. Net-Works pays local people to collect the nets, which Interface uses to produce 100% recycled carpet yarn.

As of 2015, the program has operated in 26 communities and directly benefited over 4,000 people. It supports Interface’s Mission Zero goal to source 100% recycled material for its carpet tile. The  ACE ceremony will occur on January 5, 2017 at 10:30 a.m. EST, and streamed online at

CaGBC launches Zero Carbon Building Framework

The Canada Green Building Council® [CaGBC] has released a Zero Carbon Buildings Framework for the assessment of highly energy efficient buildings that minimize greenhouse gas emissions. The Framework is the first stage of a broader CaGBC Zero Carbon Buildings Initiative to champion the move to lower-carbon commercial, institutional and high-rise residential buildings in support of Canada’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

Working with Integral Group’s Research and Planning group in Vancouver, the CaGBC consulted with approximately 50 individuals representing 40 organizations in the building sector and undertook a comprehensive review of nine international net zero building approaches. The resulting CaGBC Framework facilitates broad participation across a range of building types and sizes, provides a clear definition for zero carbon buildings, and establishes five key components for the evaluation of building carbon footprints that are detailed below. 
1. A greenhouse gas intensity metric for assessing a building’s emissions, calculated using regional emissions factors.
2. Energy intensity metrics to incentivize the design of highly efficient, reliable and resilient buildings.
3. A peak energy demand metric to encourage the use of “peak shaving” measures.
4. An embodied carbon metric to recognize the importance of building material lifecycle impacts.
5. A requirement that renewable energy be generated on-site or procured directly in order to ensure the addition of clean power generation.

The next phases of the Zero Carbon Initiative include the identification of specific pathways to zero carbon, a zero carbon building pilot program, and the development of a verification program to be completed and launched by CaGBC by the end of the second quarter of 2017.

Josée Lupien sole Canadian to win LEED Fellow in 2016

At the recognition gala of the Greenbuild International Conference in Los Angeles in october, Josée Lupien – LEED AP BD+C & ID+C – was awarded the status of LEED Fellow, the most prestigious distinction in the sustainable building industry.

The first woman in the construction industry from the Province of Quebec to become a LEED Fellow, part of the professional green building industry for over 12 years, and a founding member of the Quebec chapter of the Canadian Green Building Council, she has helped place Quebec at the forefront of Canada’s sustainable construction industry.

Her company, Vertima, which manages third-party validation and certification of ecological materials for manufacturers, is widely recognized for its leading-edge expertise in green building and LEED certification.

Cordwood Building

Written by Rob Roy, who has been researching and teaching about cordwood masonry for 40 years, Cordwood Building covers various wall-building methods and new mortar options to electrical wiring and code compliance, and augmented by fresh case studies from around the world. More than a dozen new chapters cover the array of innovations in cordwood construction since the book was first released nearly 15 years ago.

Paperback, 288 pages, $19.45, ISBN: 9780865718289.

Thermal break materials improve envelope performance

Armadillo Structural Connections group has developed Armatherm™ thermal break materials which significantly reduce the amount of energy lost from thermal bridging in structural steel and façade connections and improve building envelope performance.
Applications include balcony, canopy, parapet, masonry shelf angle, cladding/ Z-girt and curtain wall mullion connections which can improve the effective U value of wall assemblies by as much as 70%.

Remote-monitored HRV

Ventacity’s Smart Ventilation Management Systems provide efficient, intelligent and secure 24/7 control of indoor air quality in smaller commercial buildings. Ventacity is  the first to integrate intelligent heat recovery ventilation, a secure, private cloud network and remote monitoring and management services to optimize indoor air quality in real time while reducing HVAC energy use.