It continues to remain a priority for the Vancouver School District to ensure students attend seismically safe schools as soon as possible. Bayview Elementary and Sir Matthew Begbie Elementary schools are currently part of the Ministry of Education’s seismic mitigation program, that provides provincial funding to see both school communities receive new replacement seismically-safe buildings.
The two schools are now part of a pilot project for the use of mass timber in school buildings. The use of mass timber reduces greenhouse gas emissions, promotes innovation and supports local value-added manufacturing.
“The Vancouver School Board is delighted to be partnering with Natural Resources Canada and the BC Ministry of Education in this exciting project, where two of our schools will be one of the first in Canada to use mass timber in their seismic replacement buildings,” says Carmen Cho, Board Chair. “Incorporating this renewable, sustainable product supports the Board’s commitment to reduce its carbon footprint.”
Natural Resources Canada’s Green Construction through Wood (GCWood) Program is providing additional research funding for these projects. The program encourages the use of wood in non-traditional construction projects as well as supports innovative wood construction technologies and the low-carbon economy.
“Students and staff deserve to spend their days in schools that are built seismically safe with sustainable products. Our government acted fast to provide $46.9 million to replace these schools and give students a better place to go to learn. To see mass timber being used in construction is a very exciting development,” says Jennifer Whiteside, British Columbia’s Minister of Education.
The 21st century designs of these schools will optimize flexible learning spaces and maximize student collaboration. The facilities will also be built to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold standard.
The anticipated completion of both schools is winter 2021/2022.
Learn more about the Bayview Elementary seismic replacement project.
Learn more about the Begbie Elementary seismic replacement project.