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Showcasing BC & Alberta’s architects and interior designers

WINTER 2017 Vol. 17 No.3

PM 40063056

d e s i g n q ua rt e r ly

Christ Church Cathedral Peter Osborne, GEC Architecture | Best Practices | Lighting

The Epitome of Elegance with a Modern Twist The Quentin 6-light Chandelier from Hinkley features sleek angular forms that create a striking geometric interplay. The Quentin’s clean and open design showcases its unique craftsmanship with intersecting rectangles in a bold Bronze finish, forming a modern silhouette, and its candle sleeves in a Heritage Brass finish add a distinctive, elegant vintage feel.

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Vancouver • Coquitlam • Kamloops • Penticton • Edmonton • Calgary • Saskatoon • Brandon

in this issue



Features 06 Designer Profile

Peter Osborne, partner at GEC Architecture, is committed to bringing highly innovative projects to Alberta through collaboration.

10 PROJECT Profile


The Christ Church Cathedral is a historic landmark in downtown Vancouver that has undergone two decades of renovations.

16 best practices

▶ Effective Public Spaces ▶ Delivering projects in a competitive environment

▶ Practicality of Lean in Healthcare

22 Lighting

▶ Lighting Trends in Luminaires ▶ Lights Out ▶ Intelligent Lighting

Departments ON THE COVER: Christ Church Cathedral in downtown Vancouver Photo: Martin Knowles

04 From the Editor 28Architects in BC

▶ A New Lease on Life Winter 2017 | DESIGN QUARTERLY


from the editor

More than Normal

WINTER 2017 Vol. 17 No.3 PUBLISHER Dan Gnocato Managing Editor Cheryl Mah Graphic Design Tang Creative Inc.

Winter in Vancouver this season has been much colder than normal and brought more snow than normal. The weather has made ice skating on local ponds possible (not since 1996) and the local park hills were favourite spots for families to go sledding. The snowy weather also made the holiday season more festive as we walked around to see all the lights and decorations. In downtown Vancouver, there are the Lights of Hope at the St Paul’s Hospital and the 50-foottall tree at Robson Square. Many holiday events are also held at churches. Christ Church Cathedral has welcomed the community at the corner of West Georgia and Burrard for more than 100 years. Once the tallest building in the area, it has been undergoing multiple phases of renovations for 20 years. Proscenium Architecture + Interiors has been involved from day one and this final phase of a new roof and bell spire is the accumulation of a special project. For our profile, I speak with Peter Osborne, partner at GEC Architecture. He opened the firm’s Edmonton office in 2011 and has steadily grown it over the past five years. As one of the oldest architectural partnerships in Alberta, GEC celebrated 50 years in 2016. Also inside this issue, you will find our regular features on lighting and best practices. For best practices, industry experts share insights on the lean process in healthcare; the importance of public space to livable communities; and alternative project delivery projects. We hope you enjoy the read and we look forward to bringing you more interesting stories for 2017.

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Marc Boutin Daniel Hawreluk Len Horvath Gord Johnston Darren Luce John MacSween Margot Richards B.C./ALBERTA SALES Dan Gnocato 604.549.4521 ext. 223


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The purpose of Design Quarterly is to reflect and represent practitioners and professionals in the architectural, interior design and design resource communities throughout British Columbia and Alberta.


Collaborative Pursuits By Cheryl Mah

GEC Architecture has been making significant contributions to Alberta’s architectural landscape for half a century. The firm’s designs and projects are widely acclaimed and many are major landmarks such as the Saddledome and Olympic Oval in Calgary. The firm’s philosophy that architecture is a collaborative and interdisciplinary pursuit has remained consistent throughout the years, resulting in many innovative buildings and long standing clients. GEC was started in Calgary by Don Stevens and Barry Graham and has undergone several name changes as new partners were added. Today, the firm operates out of two offices and currently has seven partners, five of whom are architects. The firm has grown organically, focusing on finding the right people and attracting a talent pool of young architects. One of those young architects is partner Peter Osborne, who leads the Edmonton office. “I’m probably the third generation of partnership at GEC along with Gary Mundy and Andrew Tankard,” says Osborne, 38. The other architect senior partners include David Edmonds and Ken Cartier. “Succession planning and how our practice evolves has always been a key focus of the partners. Having senior leadership to guide us is also a part of that continuity.” Osborne began his internship with the firm in 2003, when it was known as Graham Edmunds Cartier. “One of the first projects that I ever worked on and designed was the Elephant habitat at the Calgary Zoo — that was quite fun as an intern,” he recalls. Growing up in Edmonton, the Ontario native always had an interest in architecture, buildings and cities. In his pursuit to become an architect, he first obtained a diploma in architectural technology at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology. With no architectural degree program available in Edmonton, he headed east to Dalhousie University where he obtained his Bachelor of Environment Design Studies before graduating with a Master of Architecture in 2003. He returned to Calgary and began his internship with Graham Edmunds Cartier. He eventually moved back to Edmonton (when he met his wife) and joined Stantec Architecture in 2004. He spent seven years with the firm, working on a variety of projects such as the Edmonton Clinic Health Academy and Enterprise Square, both at the University of Alberta. He was also the design lead on the Edmonton International Airport’s terminal expansion and the Southgate LRT station.




During his time with Stantec, Osborne always remained in touch with the partners at GEC. When GEC wanted to open an Edmonton office in 2011, he couldn’t pass up the unique opportunity. “It was an opportunity to help expand the practice, where I had enjoyed my time, and help lead a new office,” says Osborne, who rejoined GEC as a senior associate to open the office before becoming a partner in 2012. Since then, Osborne has steadily grown the practice. Today, the Edmonton office is a staff of 15, while Calgary has about 50. “We’ve had a lot of successes in the past five years in really growing the Edmonton office,” says Osborne, who provides a hands-on approach to leadership and design direction. “Although we have two locations, we work as one integrated practice.” He describes the firm’s design approach as highly collaborative where they work with clients, user groups, consultants and contractors to ensure successful project delivery. The firm is also at the cutting edge of the industry’s latest BIM technology and parametric modeling, using these tools as part of its design process to meet the increasingly complex requirements of projects.

Above: Peter Lougheed Hall Residence at the University of Alberta Left: Remington YMCA in Quarry Park

“We like technically challenging projects... that require innovative thinking,” says Osborne. The recent economic downturn in Alberta has impacted the scale of some of projects and delayed others but for the most part, the firm has been able to maintain a steady volume. “Our focus is institutional, multifamily housing and the public those have maintained a fair amount of strength and some of it’s due to stimulus spending by various levels of government which has helped,” says Osborne, citing for example, the Productivity and

Innovation Centre (PICA) at NAIT which is federally funded. “It is under construction and targeting completion for April 2018.” PICA will be a one-of-a-kind centre where NAIT and industry can come together to find solutions and to develop new technologies and products. It’s an example of the many unique buildings completed by GEC, says Osborne, citing the Faculty for Veterinary Medicine at University of Calgary as another one. Other current projects include ValleyLine extension in Edmonton, YYC Airside Connections Corridor, Winter 2017 | DESIGN QUARTERLY



GEC celebrated 50 years in 2016.

Peter Osborne is leading the design of the Productivity and Innovation Centre at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology.



the Peter Lougheed Hall Residence at the University of Alberta and the recently completed 94,000 square foot Remington YMCA in Quarry Park. “It’s a brand new recreation centre that recently opened, providing a new community hub that includes a gym, library and pool. It’s a part of the overall recreation expansion plan by the City of Calgary,” says Osborne, adding GEC is also working on the 280,000 square feet Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility, set to open in 2017. While projects are primarily located in Alberta, GEC has also completed projects in B.C. and Ontario. The firm is currently completing nine schools in Saskatchewan as part of a large P3 project. “We look for opportunities across Western Canada and that’s been

part of our success over the last few years — diversifying our projects and diversifying where we’re doing our work,” says Osborne. But without a doubt, the firm’s local roots and contributions to the communities where they live is a source of great pride. As one of the oldest architectural partnerships in Alberta, GEC celebrated 50 years in 2016. “We are proud of our history and celebrated with our clients in Calgary and Edmonton,” notes Osborne. GEC has been responsible for the design of a diverse range of projects that include world-class athletic centres, LRT stations, university campuses and community gathering places. The firm is best known for its expertise in three key areas: sports and recreation, post-secondary and transportation. “At GEC, we work hard to get projects completed. It’s been a big part of our success. We get projects built — that’s what motivates me and is something I enjoy seeing coming to fruition,” says Osborne. He is also motivated to contribute to the larger design community, currently serving as the immediate past president of the Alberta Association of Architects (AAA). “I’ve always been involved in the community — it’s an opportunity to

improve the quality of architecture from a different perspective,” says Osborne, who is also a past chair of the Edmonton Design Committee and a past director in the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada’s Alberta chapter. A big focus for the AAA council has been to update its Architects Act in conjunction with the Government of Alberta and there has been good progress made, according to Osborne. “We are also heavily involved in getting more exposure at the national level for licensed interior designers,” he says. “Alberta is unique in that we have licensed interior designers as members, which is a different path than registered interior designers. Licensed interior designers are able to do bigger projects and deal with life safety requirements.” As for the future of design in Edmonton, Osborne believes the bar will continue to be raised. “Edmonton has a lot of opportunity... and there has certainly been an increase in the conversation about architecture and the quality of design here,” he says. Outside of work, the father of three enjoys spending time with his young family and is an avid runner. DQ

feature PROJECT


a Vancouver


Story by Cheryl Mah | Photography by Martin Knowles Christ Church Cathedral, Vancouver’s oldest surviving church, has served as a sanctuary and gathering place at the corner of West Georgia and Burrard for more than 125 years. The vision for the restoration and renewal of this Vancouver landmark began more than 20 years ago, and is finally complete. After 18 months under wraps, the historic church now has a new metal roof, a striking illuminated stained glass bell tower and an expanded kitchen. For Proscenium Architecture + Interiors, this final phase is the accumulation of a long and special project. Principal-in-charge Hugh Cochlin says the firm has been working with the church for more than a



decade, beginning with phase 1 when renovations and a voluntary seismic upgrade began. “We have been a part of many Vancouver heritage buildings but of them all, I consider this one the dearest to me,” says Cochlin. “This final phase completes a long-standing vision for the church.” Scott Construction began work on this final phase in May 2015 with substantial completion in November 2016. Replacing the 17,000 square foot roof (critical to completing the cathedral’s seismic upgrade started in previous phases) was a massive undertaking. A labyrinth of scaffolding was built to protect the church

feature PROJECT

The centrepiece... in this final phase is the long awaited bell spire...



from the elements during removal of the existing roof. The scaffolding also contained a unique gantry crane system that was created specifically for this project to move materials. The existing asphalt shingles (which contained asbestos) was replaced with a standing seam zinc roof with an expected life of 50-100 years. A structural steel frame was also added to complete the seismic diaphragm, along with acoustic and thermal upgrades within the roof structure. Fire protection sprinklers were also installed. “In order to connect the steel diaphragm to the concrete walls, we had to bring in a masonry drilling specialist. They drilled stainless steel rods down through the stone at key seismic points and that’s how we connected the new roof to the existing walls,” explains Cochlin. “Now we have properly completed the seismic upgrade of the building to the 1999 seismic code.” Adds project architect Ron Clay, “Credit to the city to have the foresight to be able to see this through back in the earlier phases, knowing

the money wouldn’t always be in place or in place when we needed it and allowing us to design to a level of code that was manageable.” The $9 million dollar “Raise the Roof, Ring the Bells, Feed the Hungry” campaign also included doubling the size of the church’s small kitchen so the Cathedral can better serve the needs of Vancouver’s hungry and vulnerable. “The kitchen was woefully inadequate. We renovated the kitchen and storage rooms for the expansion,” says Cochlin. The centrepiece and most significant architectural addition in this final phase is the long awaited bell spire at the northeast corner of the Cathedral set atop the existing elevator core — part of a previous accessibility upgrade, according to Cochlin. The bell tower design was a collaborative effort between Cochlin and Ben Nielsen, an associate at the firm. Inspiration for the bell tower was drawn from the beautiful stained glass of the Cathedral itself, which opens up the lane towards Georgia Street. The 100 foot tower is a steel

frame with an art glass curtain on top of a concrete base. The three 60-foot panels of stained glass was custom designed by Canadian artist, Sarah Hall and entitled “Welcoming Light.” All of the 204 stained glass pieces were fabricated by Kits Glass in Richmond. The illuminated tower reflects the Cathedral’s history as the “light on the hill,” when it was once the tallest building in the city, used by mariners for navigation coming into port. “At the top we have a cross… and these lines of metal that go up, much like a gothic church…reaching to the heavens. It also effectively ties the glass bell spire to the concrete base,” says Cochlin. The cross, designed to complement the steel bell tower, is composed of laminated sandwiches of blackened stainless steel and a stained glass core that catches the light, creating the same sense of illumination as the tower. “The cross was inspired by the bell tower,” says Nielsen. “The challenge was to take all the material cues that we were using in the bell tower and

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feature PROJECT

The bell spire features three 60-foot tall panels of custom stained glass and houses four custom bronze bells.



work them into something quite a bit smaller.” Nielsen adds that the bell tower act as a bridge between the heritage building and the modern lines of the new accessibility addition, taking formal cues from the elevator shaft and material cues from the church. As a Class A heritage building, it was important that any new additions respect the heritage fabric of the church. The bell spire houses four custom bronze bells designed and cast by Paccard Foundry of Annecy France and were installed in late summer of 2016. Each bell (heaviest weighing close to 5,000 lbs) had to be lifted more than 100 feet into the air and lowered into the spire. According to Paccard, who “provides bells for bell spires all around the world — this is the only bell spire in the world that is built

out of stained glass entirely like this,” notes Cochlin. The tower was constructed offsite and was initially going to be delivered in one piece and lifted into place on top of the elevator shaft. “But it turned out the crane required to lift it in one piece was going to exert so much pressure that it was going to blow the walls of both buildings adjacent to it,” says Nielsen, so the tower had to be installed in two halves. Careful consideration and technical expertise was also required to ensure the noise and vibration of the ringing bells would not shatter the stained glass. “The biggest challenge was to not have the stained glass exploding,” says Cochlin. The unexpected discovery of leadcontaminated dust in the roof cavity created the biggest setback in terms of budget and schedule. Building

the required scaffolding was also a bigger task than anticipated. “The project was almost exactly a year over what we had originally projected because of all the extra challenges we went through,” says Clay. “It was a phased occupancy so when the kitchen work was completed, the church was allowed to occupy the basement level and back of office space. They had to hold services in a neighbouring tower for six months.” The bells at Christ Church Cathedral will ring at the beginning and end of each work day, prior to Sunday services, in celebration of holy days and to mark the civic events and holidays. The new tower and bells mark the completion of a 20 year ambitious renovation, ensuring a historic city landmark is able to continue serving the community. DQ


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best practices

Effective Public Space By Marc Boutin

...key tools to create effective public space include a well-framed stakeholder engagement...

When we read about or discuss public space, we quickly become aware that it is a lightning rod for public opinion ­— the subject matter setting the table for a great number of public issues that are fundamentally divisive, including the degree of taxation, collective vs. private interests, public space as commodity, and gentrification of community spaces. All of these issues frame the broader consideration of public space and its relative value. And so what is the value of public space? Interestingly, the answer to that question is often presented by ironically different perspectives: someone will offer their incredible holiday experiences enjoying the streets of Paris while simultaneously complaining about the cost of new 16


public spaces or street improvements in their own city. And yet, irony aside, we can’t deny the value of public space, particularly given the accelerated urbanization of our nation and the continuing increase in the value of cities as the engines of our economy. Perhaps more importantly, and from a more philosophical perspective, public space is the touchstone for civil society, wherein the creation of common space for the enjoyment of all walks of life is at the core of who we are as a contemporary and inclusive society. Public space is the living room of the city — the shared space where we can collectively discuss, debate, and invest in our challenges, dreams and aspirations. But when it comes time to design public space, we need to be

mindful that the nature of public space is constantly evolving in North America, as different models gain and lose support. In Calgary, we are seeing the rapid demolishing of open public space that, at one time, was understood, and possibly revered, as civic space; a place to come together and reflect. For example, the removal of the Brotherhood of Mankind Park and the complete renovation of Century Gardens. This model of public space, seen now as empty, boring, and frankly dangerous, has been replaced by public space constructed around consumption. The successful public realm image is now represented with happy, smiling, coffee-carrying inhabitants. Sarcasm aside, we do understand that the quality of the public realm, whatever its configuration (plaza,

street, alley), or cultural motivation, has everything to do with critical mass, both in terms of the access to amenities and the abundance of people. Building on the model of pre-modern European cities, where, based on foot traffic being the critical means of movement, there exists a robust mixture of spaces and places to live, work and recreate in the same area. Herein lies the great challenge for the design of public space in Western Canadian cities, where so many have recalibrated their city centres around the optimization of vehicular traffic flow, imagining the city as a metaphoric organ whose value existed in the efficient passage of goods and material, without giving consideration to actually occupying the city, to living in it. Habitation

best practices

was reserved for the green suburbs. Today, given the popularization of lifestyle pursuit as a driving cultural force, there has emerged a key opportunity for the design community to reconsider public space and its role in city-building. Of course all opportunities have their challenges. From a

philosophical perspective, if in fact public space is, first and foremost, inclusive and open to all walks of life, how do we as designers manifest the more socially-minded objectives of public space when public space is paid for, managed, and operated by those who are in power and who may not be interested in social agency? We

certainly understand this perspective from private land developers and how they create streetscapes and open spaces for the exclusive use of their tenants. But it is also a challenge for public development entities like cities. As the managers of the public purse and beholden to the will of the voter, public spaces in cities are often designed to discourage their use by other than your average citizens. Those on the outside include the homeless and any others who wish to use public space in nonconventional ways, such as skateboarders. Another challenge is that the delivery of design consulting services for the public realm involves a complex approval process due to the wide spectrum of stakeholders. The result is the need for consensus-building, with the inherent risk of denuding the project’s concept of its capacity to provoke change in a positive manner.

To address this complex approval process, and to avoid burying the project’s value in consensus-building mediocrity, key tools to create effective public space include a well-framed stakeholder engagement that mobilizes diverse voices towards key design objectives and concepts, cultivates ownership and therefore support for the project, and emboldens government project leaders who will ultimately argue for and pay for a project with political and public support. The design of public space in our cities is a complex and layered process, the stakes are high, and the potential rewards in terms of creating livable and egalitarian urban spaces is even higher. DQ Marc Boutin is principal of The Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative in Calgary.

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1565 West 7th Ave. Vancouver, BC 604-669-5525 Winter 2017 | DESIGN QUARTERLY


best practices

Delivering projects in a competitive environment By Gord Johnston

This page and top of next: Stantec P3 project — the Iqaluit Airport Improvement Project Bottom photo on next page: Stantec P3 project — Evan Thomas Water and Wastewater Treatment



Alternative project delivery (APD) projects can take many forms, ranging from design-build (DB) to full public-private-partnership (P3), and are becoming more common for large, public infrastructure projects. Over the years, we’ve learned a lot of lessons. What to do, what not to do, and what can unexpectedly catch teams off guard and take a project off the rails. In our current, competitive environment — fueled by the promise of more APD projects, consultants need to consider several key factors in successful APD project pursuit and delivery.

Track trends In Canada, most APD projects are public sector driven. This gives consultants ample time to look at the scope of projects and track potential funding through the release of government budgets. By monitoring the funding cycle, and budget allocation, we can estimate the timing of the RFP and estimated project completion. This is the time where you need to identify if you have the capacity, and ability to pursue the project. Better together No company can go it alone. A

trusted team of partners needs to be assembled to deliver a project that clients are happy with on time, and on budget. Because potential projects are typically identified years in advance, there is plenty of time to begin assembling the team. I recently attended the Canadian Council for Public-Private-Partnerships conference in Toronto. Not only was there a great discussion about various P3 opportunities across the country, it was clear that attendees were interested in meeting with potential partners to discuss teaming opportunities. If firms want to be successful,

best practices

..when working on an APD project the pressure to deliver on time is elevated.

they need strong partnerships established well in advance of the RFP. Ideally, firms should build teams with which they have a history of success, as clients are looking for a team that they know will work well together and has a long history of proven performance. Building capacity While formalizing external partnerships, it is critical that you look at building capacity internally. For example, if the objective is to successfully compete on transportation projects, make sure you have

the bench strength and capacity to pursue and deliver on these opportunities. P3 projects are multi-year efforts. If more than one project is secured, your designers, construction services or project management team commitments could overlap. Coordination is key to ensuring you do not under deliver on the service you committed to. The challenge is not to spread resources too thin. Timelines can make or break a project Waiting for an APD project to begin can often take years. From the initial

project announcement to pursuit to team selection, projects often see a number of delays. However, once the project is announced, the clock starts and clients often identify short timelines for key milestones. Often, these timelines are tied to financial incentives. If the project is late, the team can be penalized. If delivered early or under budget, the team could receive a bonus. While unexpected challenges or delays can occur anytime or on any project — when working on an APD project the pressure to deliver on time is elevated. Communication is the only way to keep a project moving ahead. At the beginning of the project, be clear on approvals, and expectations. Anyone who has worked on a P3 knows clear communication is the only way to successfully deliver a project. Consistency is key A change in staff on the project team, or a change on the client side can easily take a project off track. The group of people at the beginning of a project must remain on the project until the end to maintain continuity. In fact, some clients are now looking at penalizing teams for staff changes in key positions. As these are multiyear projects, creative ways need to be found to encourage people to see

a project through to the end but ultimately, it is imperative to maintain a consistent project team to ensure successful delivery. Stay optimistic about opportunities A year ago, the industry thought that the funnel of P3 projects and funding would be flowing in 2016. The new federal government specified that APD would play a big role in getting infrastructure projects off the ground. While budgets have identified priorities for the next five years, we are waiting for details on the new infrastructure bank and how that will impact infrastructure priorities. Does opportunity exist? Yes. Do we know what will materialize in the next six to 12 months? No. So take the time now to identify what you want to chase. Build your capacity and be ready. DQ Gord Johnston is the executive vice president and business operating unit leader for Stantec’s infrastructure practice leading the transportation, community development, and water business lines. He has 30 years of private and public sector experience in the design and project management of infrastructure projects throughout North America and abroad. Winter 2017 | DESIGN QUARTERLY


best practices

Practicality of Lean in Healthcare By John MacSween

Penticton Regional Hospital, currently under construction, where Parkin Archtiects applied Lean Lessons Learned (L3) throughout the clinical design process.



When Toyota first developed lean production management techniques and principles decades ago it is unlikely it could have foreseen the application of lean to the provision of healthcare. In fact, healthcare was a much simpler process then, but with the advent of technology and its medical applications to diagnostics and treatment the healthcare industry has become a very complex and highly technical system of inter-related processes and procedures. Over several decades the ever-increasing cost and complexity of healthcare has resulted in inefficiencies that produce less than optimal

best practices

results in both cost and quality of patient care. Lean is one approach that health authorities, designers and clinicians are collectively implementing in efforts to improve efficiencies, eliminate waste, reduce costs and ultimately provide the best patient care possible. Engaging in the lean process is not for the faint of heart. It is not a one-time event. It requires the full endorsement and commitment of the hospital executive and necessitates adoption of an ongoing corporate culture that continually evaluates and improves. It is not a service provided by outside consultants. It is time consuming at virtually every level within the organization. It is an internal process that, to be successful, cannot be short circuited. Some of the most common errors that hospitals make in their efforts to implement lean are lack of commitment by leadership, failure to dedicate sufficient resources (staff time) and inability to adopt and enforce standardized practices across the organization. While these errors may not be catastrophic to the lean process they will most certainly adversely impact the effectiveness of the exercise, possibly to the point of there being little or no positive (financial) benefit. As well, some argue that the overwhelming dedication of hospital staff time to the process negates the possibility of cost savings other than in the very long term (at which point in time the ongoing lean improvements may have changed the process in question). One report claims that the province of Saskatchewan spent approximately $1500 for every dollar saved by lean process improvements. Perhaps the inconsistency in opinion on the

effective benefits of lean in healthcare is a result of the anecdotal nature of reported results. There is very limited documented empirical evidence that can show statistically significant improvements as a direct result of the lean process. Some of the documented results, however unempirical, are impossible to ignore. One of Parkin’s long-time hospital clients, Hotel-Dieu Grace Hospital in Windsor, Ontario, realized a 22 per cent reduction in emergency department wait times — ALOS (average length of stay). Even allowing for a larger-than-average margin of error, the result is an appreciable improvement. One of the hurdles to identifying and adopting lean process improvements faced by most hospitals, in Canada at least, is the incremental funding of capital projects. The incidence of facility-wide renewal projects is rare. Most hospitals deal with renovation and expansion on a departmental basis. Funding of hospital-wide redevelopment projects is rare and hospital replacement projects even more rare. Hence, implementing lean poses logistic challenges to hospitals. Funding for staff resource time and infrastructure improvements as well as the ability to implement lean on a facility-wide basis are significant barriers to most hospitals. While lean may be applied to specific departments, the intricate inter-dependency and impact of one department’s processes upon another’s quickly limit the effective benefits that process improvements in a single department can affect across the organization. For instance, an outpatient clinic can implement lean process improvements to increase staff efficiency, reduce waste, improve information flow and provide greater

The challenge with applying lean to healthcare to find the balance. patient satisfaction. But all of these benefits are diminished if that clinic is supported by a laboratory that is inefficient and cannot return test results quickly or a patient registration system that cannot keep pace with the clinics turnover times. The challenge with applying lean to healthcare is, as in many aspects of life, how to find the balance. Surely it doesn’t have to be an “all-or-nothing” approach. Lean informs us to reduce or eliminate waste. We have examples (lessons learned) of successful (and some not so successful) lean applications in healthcare from around the world. Let’s not waste the investment of time and money by assuming lean principles are specific to a given hospital. There are similarities in processes and practices from hospital to hospital that make the lessons learned at one hospital applicable to another, if not directly then in an adapted form. Healthcare evolution needs the big steps forward to progress and improve delivery of care on all fronts so the important work of the full-on lean implementation is important. The balance lays perhaps in identifying the adaptable Lean Lessons Learned (L3) for use in a more universally applicable approach. DQ John MacSween is a director at Parkin Architects and has focused his career on healthcare planning and design. He manages Parkin’s western Canadian operations. Winter 2017 | DESIGN QUARTERLY



Lighting Trends in Luminaires The new generation of intelligent, optically precise and design-forward luminaries developed for LEDs enable integrated illumination and lighting effects. Advanced optics deliver the light where designers need it to realize design intent.

By Darren Luce

Image courtesy of Tech Lighting

Recessed point source lighting has also benefited from the advancement of LEDs and optics, allowing designers to work with precise clean beams of light for downlighting, wall accent and wall wash. One example is a 10 degree narrow spot TIR optic with no spill light that you can use to precisely light a table or sculpture:

images courtesy of Lumenalpha



Advanced optics combined with small scale and electronics provide designers with lighting products that can be seemlessly integrated into their designs. In this example an illuminated linear cove reveals up the wall and then across the ceiling incorporating accent projectors within the ceiling cove all merged into one system resulting in a clean minimalist installation.

Optics can also be used to deliver pattern effects, creating dramatic contrast and visual impact.

Images courtesy of iGuzzini NA

Linear luminaire designers use wave guide technologies to deliver multiple lighting distributions [patterns] from a single minimalist 2.5” x 2.5” profile. Here are three examples:

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The new generation of LED luminaires finally delivers on the promise of all new technologies, which is to allow humans to experience light and design in a way not possible with the previous technologies. Designers need to embrace this whole new class of lighting design tools and in doing so challenge themselves, their design teams and suppliers. Darren Luce is the president and founding principal of Vancouver based CDm2 Lightworks.

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Lights Out Observations of LED Lighting outdoors

By Margot Richards | Photo by Jamie Ball




The significant contribution that lighting plays in architecture, interior design and landscape design is not only appreciated by the design professional, it is seen and felt by many. Anyone who bothers to notice can see how lighting can define volume, create texture and enhance finishes. The study of lighting goes well beyond technical matters and application specifications. Lighting creates responses that resonate on an emotional level. We can all relate to the warmth of a camp fire and how compelling the experience of sharing light can be. On the other hand, most people do not respond well to overlit spaces or lighting that appears cold. It is important to remember that lighting shapes our world. Lighting is an amazing design tool, but it is also an extraordinary factor in the physiology and psychology of our species, and those we share this planet with. There can be no question that LED technology has surpassed almost all other lighting technologies. In outdoor spaces, the clear preference is to use LED in street lighting. LED street lighting and outdoor lighting is the source of choice because it is instant on, uses less energy than other sources and is maintenance friendly because of its longevity. Most white LEDs are blue rich light. Typically cool white light is used as seeming to create better visibility. The problem is that higher light levels create reflected light contributing to Skyglow, a type of light pollution. Cities and municipalities have adopted the use of LED street lighting for energy savings, without it seems, consideration of the over-lighting aspect of much LED street lighting. This definitely applies to retrofit conditions where existing street lights are replaced by cool white LED light. It also applies to new installations where street lighting is designed around uniformity and light levels that are to be determined appropriate. The white light created by the LEDs is blue-based wavelength technology. And short wavelength blue light reaches further in the atmosphere than long wavelength red light. Therefore compared to the previously prevalent sodium red-based technology, the white LED light contributes more to light pollution even though the light levels are the same. There have been a number of publications and articles identifying the deleterious effects of blue light at times of day when there should not be exposure. For instance, many work at night on computers, iPads and mobile phones. Some even sleep with their mobile phones beside them in bed! Studies done by researchers such as Dr. Joan E. Roberts of Fordham University have found correlations between exposure to blue light and diseases. In June 2016, the American Medical Association published a report, “Human and Environmental Effects of Light Emitting Diode Community Lighting” in which “white LED street patterns (may) contribute to the risk of chronic disease in the populations of cities in which they have been installed.”

Ecosystems are greatly affected due to interrupted day and night cycles as a result of light pollution. In addition to the connection to health issues in human beings, other considerations in the use of blue rich LED lighting outdoors are the effects on all living creatures. Ecosystems are greatly affected due to interrupted day and night cycles as a result of light pollution. Reports on light pollution can be found about migratory animals, insects, disrupted cycles for nocturnal and predatory animals to name a few. Plants are not immune to the effects of light pollution and exposure to blue light at inappropriate times of day. Light pollution also makes for poor visibility for studying the sky. Astronomers are keenly aware of the interference light pollution causes with observation of the cosmos. The broad use of LED lighting in outdoor applications is sensible and reduces energy consumption significantly. Since the technology is relatively new and is being employed by many cities and municipalities, it makes sense to take advantage of the energy savings. The next step is to examine the applications and how best to use LED lighting in a way that is less harmful to plants and animals and lessens light pollution. As important as the utilization of LED technology is in outdoor lighting, the approach to outdoor lighting needs to be considered and prudent practices put in place. LED technology allows for control, so light levels can be set for different conditions. For instance, outdoor lighting can be dialled down after a predetermined time of night to provide enough light for safety and visibility, but with a lower intensity. Often lighting is designed with the intent of creating uniformity. This seems to result in over lighting. White LED should be used in the least blue rich type, so colour temperature of no more than 3000 Kelvin would be less harmful to the environment. Fully shielded lighting puts light where it is needed and does not contribute to sky glow or stray light pollution. More information about blue light, light pollution and LED lighting is available. A few resources to consult are: International Dark Sky Association, David Suzuki Foundation, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada and American Medical Association. DQ Margot Richards is a lighting designer in Vancouver.




Intelligent Lighting The Internet of Things Comes to Lighting

By Len Horvath

...designers can now specify occupancy sensors in washrooms and corridors that reduce the light output...

Corridor with dimming sensor



The rapid adoption of LED technology by all lighting manufacturers into their products is just the first step in a major technology revolution in the lighting industry. The second step is to extend the capability and functionality of lighting products by adding “smarts” to everything from lamps to luminaires. This will extend the capabilities of lighting controls well beyond what has been available up to now. One of the most valuable functional capabilities is dimming, now a feature in almost all LED luminaires. Using simple dimming switches, office workers can now adjust the lighting levels in their workspace to suit their own preferences. Teachers can dim down the lighting levels at the front of their classroom when they are projecting computer-generated instructional material on a screen. One thing we have learned is

that the users need the controls to be “intuitively obvious”. The dimming function can now be used with low cost sensors that sense daylight or occupancy. For example, designers can now specify occupancy sensors in washrooms and corridors that reduce the light output to low levels on bright days next to windows or when the spaces are unoccupied. By dimming the lights instead of turning them off when spaces are unoccupied, designers do not have to worry about the backlash from occupants previously left in the dark. The result: additional energy savings with a system that users will think is “cool.” Another functional capability that is rapidly being developed is the ability to tune the colour of the light produced by the luminaires. Early products such as the HUE system developed by Philips Lighting gave

the ability for the user to produce any colour from the LED lamp or light strip. These systems are typically controlled by an app that resided on the user’s smart phone so lighting could be controlled over the internet or a Wifi system. These systems were a bit of a novelty initially. A newer generation of LED luminaires are being developed with “tunable white” technology, that will simply tune the colour temperature of white light from a luminaire so that with a control similar to dimming controls, the colour temperature can go from very warm (reddish white) to very cool (bluish white). Studies have shown this can be valuable for elderly residents in care homes and students in school since it can mimic the natural progression of sunlight throughout the day from


Luminaire with on-board sensors

sunrise (warm) to bright mid-day sun (cool) back to sunset (warm). So how does the internet of things fit into the picture? It is done by incorporating communication and computer chips into the products. There will be a rapid progression from today’s commonly used wired control systems such as 0-10V or CAT5 control wiring to utilizing advanced digital wireless controls. As an example, manufacturers are incorporating occupancy and daylight sensors plus wireless communications into office luminaires. This type of product is now available and allows automatic daylight harvesting, area-by-area dimming based on occupancy, plus individual light level control. As another example, manufacturers are incorporating computer chips into street lights so that a

variety of add-on sensors can be added. In a high crime area, manufacturers can add acoustic sensors that detect gunshots as well as video cameras and motion sensors. Coupled with a wireless communication, street lighting systems could send location data associated with a gunshot to the police department and increase light levels in that area to improve the quality of video images and assist police in dealing with the situation when they arrive. Additionally, cities could dim street lights from midnight to 6:00AM unless motion was detected in the vicinity of the street light. This would achieve both energy conservation and dark sky compliance goals. For those that are interested in the wireless technology, many manufacturers are using open protocols, typically either ZigBee or Bluetooth.

Bluetooth is very familiar since it is used by smartphones to communicate with hands-free units. However, some manufacturers are using their own proprietary technologies. All of these control technologies can simplify compliance with new building code requirements as the provinces in Canada adopt the increasingly stringent conservation requirements of the NECB (National Energy Code for Buildings) or the ASHRAE 90.1 Guideline. Of course, the bonus for the users of these new control technologies is much more flexible lighting systems that match their requirements. DQ Len Horvath, M.Sc., is president of Quantum Lighting, Inc., a company that specializes in modernizing lighting systems using the latest technologies. He has more than 40 years experience in the building industry. Winter 2017 | DESIGN QUARTERLY



A New Lease on Life The Exchange Building

By Daniel Hawreluk

When completed in the fall of 2017, The Exchange will introduce Vancouver to something 88 years new — the rehabilitation of the Old Stock Exchange building. Originally rising 11-storeys in 1929, the 80,000 square foot landmark building will play host to an additional 320,000 square feet and 20 storeys. The Exchange office building will be Canada’s first LEED Platinum heritage conversion and the building will benefit from numerous structural and technological upgrades that will ensure its prominence, relevance, and usefulness well into the future. Designed by local architects Iredale Architecture in collaboration with Harry Gugger Studio of Basel, Switzerland, the primary premise governing the initial design concept was to conceive a tower that could be seamlessly interwoven into the existing heritage building, but at the same time resist upstaging the grande dame of the block. The constraints of the site dictated that the new proposed density would need to share, in part, the site space of the existing building. This posed a unique challenge — how to integrate an addition that is four times larger than the existing structure that appears to provide nothing more than a quiet, dignified, yet well-polished backdrop. The massing of the tower involved two basic sculptural devices — canted walls to recede from contextual obstacles, and cantilevers to, in turn, re-affirm its legitimacy and gain spatial advantage on the site. 28


UBC’s Earth Sciences Building practices what it teaches The Earth Sciences Building at the University of British Columbia houses the departments of earth, ocean and atmospheric sciences, mathematics and statistics, as well as the office of the dean of science. The intent is to encourage interdisciplinary collaboration and creativity among the faculties and help advance solutions to such pressing global issues as climate change and environmental degradation. With that focus, the new building itself had to both actively encourage teamwork – which it does through a variety of formal and informal meeting spaces, including extra-wide landings on the staircase – and also model sustainability and energy efficiency. “We wanted this building to be a model of energy efficiency – not easy, when you consider it has 54 fume hoods that just eat up power,” says Craig Knight, Development Manager and Financial Analyst for UBC Properties Trust. Fume hoods are vital safety equipment intended to limit exposure to hazardous chemicals or toxic fumes, but one fume hood alone can use more energy than three typical B.C. homes. “Scientific research is very energy-intensive by nature,” says Knight. “In addition to the fume hoods, there’s the heating, ventilation and air conditioning, as well as the lighting that needs to be on many hours a day.” To try to mitigate that energy-intensiveness, UBC made a decision early in the design process to participate in the BC Hydro New Construction Program, which resources to conduct an energy-modeling study that identifies energy conservation measures. Our buildings will be more energy efficient for life if we design them right from the beginning,” Knight says. “It’s a win-win.”

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The Exchange is a bold development that has made no compromises in the ethics of providing an office building for the future...

Quietly touching the ground beside the Old Stock Exchange building (OSE) on Pender Street, the tower at street level is read and understood as a distinct, yet amiable neighbour, sharing the street-front like two complimentary colours, vastly different yet enhancing one another. As the tower ascends to the height of the OSE, it stretches up and over its parapet and then folds inward to recede from the property line, allowing the OSE to retain its independence and prominence, if only visually, from the street. Set back from the OSE building’s ornate parapet crown, the tower rises to a comfortable height before it again stretches its floor plates out over the OSE building with stepped cantilevers, maximizing the full potential of post-tensioned slabs and spatial efficiency. 30


The southwest and northwest corners of the tower above the threestorey podium are also cleaved off to respond to other site conditions. The southwest angle responds to issues of solar shading, glare and views, while the northwest angle responds to proximity issues with a neighbouring residential tower. Stepping from the macro to the micro, the designers then considered choices in architectural details, building materials and envelope technology. The vertical nature of the OSE’s façade is echoed in the elegant pinstripe of the tower’s external mullions, providing a clear connection and continuation with the site’s heritage. The choice of these oversized vertical feature caps evolved into an extensive investigation into advantages realized by their orientation and size, and how ceramic frits

applied to the triple glazing could all work together to create what was described by Harry Gugger as the “tuned façade” managing directional views and privacy, controlling solar heat gain and glare, and providing an appearance for the tower that respects the OSE building. The tower’s internal design of structure and systems provided the OSE building with a transfusion of technology. The project was not an exercise in facadism. The original structure was retained, along with significant surviving heritage features, including the brick and terracotta cladding, original window frames, and elevator lobby with original coloured marble walls and vaulted cast plaster ceiling. The construction of the new tower core in the interior corner of the L-shaped plan of the OSE allowed a central connection of the new core to the old, effectively giving the OSE building a near complete seismic upgrade. The building envelope will be completely upgraded with seismic restraint and repair of the facade’s masonry components and addition of double glazed sashes and insulation throughout.

All building systems will be replaced with the latest in mechanical and electrical technology, including LED lighting, a geo-exchange heat pump system, solar thermal panels for domestic hot water heating, and rain water capture for re-use in fire suppression, irrigation and toilet flushing. The Exchange is a bold development that has made no compromises in the ethics of providing an office building for the future, while respectfully and dutifully embracing the Old Stock Exchange building as its centrepiece, providing a new lease on life for an old office building with the expectation that it will return a life on leases as it has for the last nine decades. DQ Daniel Hawreluk, Architect AIBC, is a partner at Iredale Architecture. Daniel has 15 years of experience specializing in high-rise design and construction and has worked on projects throughout Metro Vancouver as well as California and China. He is currently the project architect for The Exchange, a $250 million heritage and office tower project in downtown Vancouver.

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Design Quarterly  

Winter 2017

Design Quarterly  

Winter 2017