Simon Fraser University’s Lorne Davies Complex


Redefining high performance.

Atop SFU’s Burnaby Mountain campus, HDR | CEI designed a new athletics facility that includes a 2,100-seat performance auditorium with large spectator seating areas and a 12,000 square foot, two-level fitness centre, one of the premier university fitness clubs in Canada. The project was designed with several advanced sustainable features, including mechanical heating, cooling and ventilation systems designed for maximum energy efficiency, flexibility and comfort.

The performance auditorium has tiers of upper seating that retract to create spaces for various uses. With complete views to the mountains, the lower retractable seating and adjacent seating balconies create a vibrant horseshoe configuration for events. An upper level VIP suite for sports and entertainment events completes the performance function of the facility and is convertible to sports program space during regular hours.

The fitness centre is located beside Terry Fox Field, allowing integration of indoor and outdoor activities. HDR | CEI and structural consultant Fast + Epp designed a composite wood and steel structure, expressing a high-tech, West Coast architectural idiom. HDR | CEI had the pleasure of working with SFU’s original architect, Arthur Erickson, as the in-house peer reviewer during the design. The result is a contemporary facility with a forward-thinking approach that remains responsive to the architectural legacy of the campus.

Project Cost



40,000 sq ft


July 2006

Sustainable Features

  • Displacement ventilation system, which supplies 100% outdoor air to the space at low level and low velocity
  • Effective use of thermal mass combined with radiant slab heating/cooling
  • Building envelope optimizes daylighting while minimizing solar gain
  • Provision of cooling without mechanical refrigeration

“HDR | CEI helped our committee create what I call a 125% building design — a design that not only met both our recreational and athletics needs, but also provided an additional benefit to the university as a whole.”

Wilf Wedmann

Director, SFU Recreation & Athletics


Simon Fraser University


Burnaby, BC


Recreation & Community, Academic