BC College’s Living Learning Community Aims for LEED Gold

By SCN Staff

NEW WESTMINSTER, BC (CANADA)—Global integrated design firm Stantec has been selected to provide the architecture and engineering for the new academic and student housing facilities for Douglas College, the world’s largest degree-granting college in British Columbia, Canada. The college educates nearly 25,000 students a year and transforms the New Westminster, British Columbia campus into a “living learning community.” The total project cost is $292.5 million and the target occupancy date is summer 2026.

Stantec’s Vancouver team, with support from the company’s global education sector, leads the architecture, interior design, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, sustainability and performance services of buildings, acoustics and Aboriginal engagement for the project. Graham Construction is the construction manager and structural engineering is provided by RJC Engineering.

The new 200,000 square foot academic building is critical to the college’s mission to provide an innovative curriculum designed to attract and retain world-class students, faculty and staff. It will accommodate more than 2,400 students and 200 staff with more than 30 classrooms, six computer labs, an 80-seat lecture hall, a 60-seat event hall, and dedicated, open collaboration labs. Additionally, it will house two faculty departments, study spaces for students, as well as a variety of breakout/meeting rooms and lounges for collaboration. Food services will be part of the university building and will augment the campus food services available on the legacy campus.

Sharing a structural podium, the new 130,000 square foot student housing component will encourage a sense of community and foster social and academic exchange. It will include 368 student beds in private and traditional shared student accommodation. Building management systems will provide intelligent controls for HVAC, lighting and energy systems that will optimize environmental performance and energy management. Efficient water use will be achieved through low-flow fixtures.

“The new building is the culmination of years of consultation and collaboration to develop a unique building that reflects the kind of supportive community that students expect from Douglas College,” said Dr. Kathy Denton, President of Douglas College. “It will be a welcoming and accessible space that will inspire students to achieve their educational goals and become resilient global citizens.”

The new space will target net zero carbon, BC Energy Step Code 4 and LEED Gold requirements. Douglas College’s Environmental Sustainability Policy guides their efforts to identify and actively adopt best practices in environmental responsibility, sustainability and energy efficiency.

“Our team is honored to help redefine the campus experience for Douglas College students, faculty and staff,” said Mark Travis, lead project architect and director of Stantec. “Creating spaces rich in learning and community, these new buildings will support the college’s goals of fostering a dynamic, accessible and supportive teaching and learning environment that deeply values ​​excellence and innovation.”

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