Posts Tagged ‘Okanagan College’



Okanagan College Centre of Excellence achieves LEED Platinum certification


The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation at Okanagan College has been certified LEED Platinum.

Since its completion in 2011, the post-secondary facility has been recognized as one of the most innovative and sustainable education facilities anywhere.

Designed by CEI Architecture, built by PCL Constructors Westcoast, and with sustainable consulting by Recollecting Consulting, the 7,000-square-metre facility provides trades and technology training and professional development with a focus on sustainable practices and the use of alternative and renewable energy.

It was one of three buildings in North America featured by the New York Times Knowledge Network as leading examples of carbon-neutral campus architecture, and has received honours from the Canadian Green Building Council, the Green Good Design Awards, the Applied Science and Technologists and Technicians of BC, and many more.

“The Centre of Excellence is truly an innovative facility, providing leading edge training in sustainable practices for Okanagan College,” said Bill Locking, senior partner with CEI Architecture.“The integrated nature of the design and construction team enabled the Centre of Excellence to achieve ambitious targets for sustainable design. We couldn’t be more proud to have been part of the project.”

The Centre of Excellence is also pursuing certification under the Living Building Challenge, one of the most rigorous measures of sustainability for the built environment. The two-storey building incorporates a variety of integrated energy efficiency and sustainable design features to minimize its impact on the environment.

“The Centre of Excellence is a truly green project and an inspiring model of what can be. The elegant combination of simple passive strategies and complex mechanical systems shows the way forward for the built environment,” said Jason Packer of Recollective Consulting. “It is a pedagogic building, supporting the growth of capacity in the green building trades through the education programs it houses and the growth of the green building design community as a case study in conservation.

“It is great to see the project rewarded with a LEED Platinum certification.”

For more information about this innovative facility, visit the project website at or click here.




CEI in the News

Here is a sampling of CEI’s recent media coverage.

Okanagan College rises to a “Challenge”

The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence made the front cover of the Canadian Facility Management and Design Magazine, October issue. The article focuses on the facility as one of the first and largest projects in the world striving to meet the standards of the Living Building Challenge.

Robert H. N. Ho Research Centre on ArchDaily

Robert H. N. Ho Research Centre, a project CEI completed with MCMP Architects, is up on ArchDaily’s architecture blog, one of the world’s leading architectural websites. The site gets over 7 million visits and 45 million page impressions per month. Check out the post here.

CEI wineries in the news

Terravista winery has caught the attention of Canadian Architect. This new boutique Okanagan winery appears on their website.

The new Wine Experience Centre at Black Hills Winery also received recognition in the latest print issue of Canadian Architect. It was also a feature story on American Building Today.

CEI featured in Canadian Business Executive Magazine

CEI was selected by the Canadian Business Executive magazine for an editorial feature in the Fall 2012 issue. The editorial showcases CEI’s work in real estate, healthcare and our commitment to sustainability, covering recent awards for the Centre of Excellence. Read the full article here.



A Living Classroom for Green Building Technology

Okanagan College is offering a new certificate program for Green Building Design and Construction. This 360-hour program blends online instruction with workshops and classes at the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Penticton, which is designed to be one of the world’s greenest buildings.




The centre of attention for green design

The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence is one of 50 international architectural projects that won a 2012 Green GOOD DESIGN™ Award from the European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design.




Robert Parlane at the Living Building Symposium

Robert Parlane will be speaking at the Cascadia Green Building Council Living Building Symposium. He will be sharing his presentation “Net Zero on a Budget: The Okanagan College Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence.” Robert was project manager of the Centre of Excellence, which achieved net zero energy and water use within the limits of a typical project budget.

The Symposium takes place on Thursday, May 31 at the Victoria Conference Centre. It will provide an introduction to the different elements of the Living Building Challenge, the world’s most stringent sustainable building standard.

Tickets are still available to attend, visit the Cascadia Green Building Council’s website for more information.



Centre of Excellence honoured

The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence at Okanagan College has won a 2012 Canadian Green Building Award. These awards recognize excellence in the design and execution of Canadian residential and non-residential buildings of all types. Seven projects were selected from a total of 56 submissions. The winners will be publicized in a special awards issue of SABMag and will be honoured at an Awards Ceremony at the CaGBC National Conference.

Tim McLennan will be at the National Conference, where he will feature the Centre of Excellence in a presentation entitled “Going Beyond: Creating a Living Building From Design to Construction.”



Centre of Excellence up to the challenge

The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation at Okanagan College was selected for the Transformational Design feature in the Spring 2012 issue of Trim Tab magazine, published bythe International Living Future Institute. The Centre of Excellence is targeting the Living Building Challenge, which requires the building design to consider its environmental impact in six areas: site, energy, materials, water, indoor quality and beauty. The overall goal is to create a building with no negative impact on the environment and surrounding ecosystem, and to achieve this goal during design, construction, and ongoing operations throughout the building’s lifecycle. Read the article to find out about the challenges and achievements that were faced while designing and building a Living Building Project.



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.



Centre of Excellence gets a new name and a grand opening

On December 12, the Okanagan College Centre of Excellence celebrated its grand opening in Penticton, and also revealed its new name: The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation. The announcement was made by B.C. Premier Christy Clark at the grand opening celebration.

The new name reflects the generosity of B.C. businessman and community supporter Jim Pattison, who donated $2.5 million to the Okanagan College Foundation and its community fundraising campaign.

The post-secondary facility opened earlier this year, supporting programs and classes in sustainable building tools and techniques for the next generation of building professionals. It was designed to the standards of the Living Building Challenge, the most rigorous sustainability program on the planet, with stringent requirements for energy efficiency, water consumption, air quality, material selection, and more.

The building itself is part of the curriculum, with accessible design features that provide students with a practical, hands on education in made-in-B.C. sustainable design.

“It’s a great day for everybody involved; students, administrators, trades people, and the whole community,” said CEI Architecture’s Tim McLennan. “It’s been such a collaborative effort between so many people that makes this building what it is. I think that it’s going to have an extremely positive, long-term influence on green building everywhere.”

Check out the video above for footage of the opening celebrations, and if you’re in Penticton, check out the building, one of the most innovative sustainable facilities in the world.



TEDx Okanagan College videos now available online

If you missed out on the TEDx conference held at Okanagan College in June, you’re in luck: the videos are now available online on YouTube. Check out this video of CEI’s Robert Parlane and his presentation ‘Agent of Change’, about the many sustainable features of Okanagan College.