Archive for January, 2012



Jim Pattison recognizes excellence

Jim Pattison joined Premier Christy Clark, MP Dan Albas and 250 guests, students and members of the community last December to announce a pledge of $2.5 million in matching funds to the college. This is the largest private gift ever given to a college in the province of B.C.

Pattison recognizes that the Center of Excellence is a catalyst for the future of sustainable building in B.C. and beyond. “I am a firm believer in education and understand that innovative buildings such as this are the places where we will train and develop a skilled workforce and the leaders of tomorrow,” said Pattison. The building, now named after Mr. Pattison, proudly recognizes the generous gift with a new sign on the west entrance, welcoming students and visitors to the Penticton campus.

CEI Architecture is pleased to see the Centre get the attention it deserves. At 6,780 square metres, the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence is one of the largest buildings of its type to pursue the rigorous standards of the Living Building Challenge™. It is a living experiment in sustainable innovation, and a testament to the power of integrated design.

Learn more about the innovative features of the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence at

Read more about the pledge by Jim Pattison to the Okanagan College here.



Andrea reaches a milestone

CEI’s Andrea van Niekerk recently passed her AIBC review, her final step in the process of becoming a licensed architect. We thought it would be a good opportunity to sit down with her to talk about how she got to this point in her career.

At an early age, Andrea knew what she wanted to be when she grew up. She can still remember riffling through the Sunday newspaper at the age of eight to find the New Homes section and retracing floor plans with a revised, more interesting design. Years later she graduated from McGill University with a Masters in Architecture, and now has over ten years of experience.

Andrea admires the work of Patkau Architects, David Chipperfield and Glenn Murcutt, and is drawn to architecture with an honest use of regional materials and buildings in which the structure is exposed and materials are natural. She enjoys working on hotel and hospitality design, and she is currently working on the Mica Heli-Ski Lodge in Revelstoke, B.C.

To help prepare her for her final AIBC oral exam, CEI partners Richard Bolus and Mark Hentze and architect Albert Leung conducted a mock interview. Andrea credits this preparation for helping her succeed. She admits the review was quite demanding.

“They expect you to have had a lot of exposure to all aspects of the architectural process, in quite a bit of detail,” she says. “On the other hand, there is not an expectation that you will have all the answers, but you do have an idea on where to find them.”




Progress of Edmonds Pool and Community Centre in the news

The Daily Commercial News posted a nice update on the progress of the Edmonds Pool and Community Centre, designed by CEI.

The article notes that the $30 million project, located in Burnaby, BC, remains on schedule and budget, with expected completion in the fall of 2012.

It includes a few quotes from Mark Hentze, partner in charge of the project, such as:

“It’s going to add a very fun and welcoming recreational facility for families in the City of Burnaby.”


“We received a lot of input from design workshops and a large design charrette in which many community groups participated directly and they really contributed to the program and design. We listened to what people felt would strengthen the community and responded to that.”

You can find the original article here.