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Ontario’s 2015 Wood Design Award winners revealed

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A select group of architects, engineers and project teams from across the province received 2015 Wood Design Awards at the 15th annual Ontario Wood WORKS! celebration.

The awards recognize people and organizations that through design excellence, advocacy and innovation are advancing the use of wood in all types of construction.

"The winning projects showcase the many benefits of wood construction," said Marianne Berube, executive director of the Ontario Wood WORKS! program.

"It doesn’t matter if we are talking about a large commercial building or a small residential addition, a performance hall or a bar."

A total of 12 awards were handed out at this year’s event — nine to specific projects and three to professionals in recognition of their efforts as wood advocates and champions.

In the winners’ circle this year are:

St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market, St. Jacobs. (Ontario Wood Award)

Architect: Architecture Incorporated, Architect. Engineer: Blackwell.

Wood was specified for the structure and all interior and exterior finish surfaces except for the metal doors and concrete floor on the building, which replaced a landmark facility that was destroyed in a fire in 2013.

Bill Fisch Forest Stewardship and Education Centre, Stouffville. (Environmental Building Wood Design Award)

Architect and Engineer: Dialog.

The 4,000-square-foot centre is expected to be the first Living Building Challenge project in the province. The use of wood was integral to the building’s performance and appropriate to its function. The project incorporates Black Spruce glulam beams as well as FSC-certified cross-laminated timber panels.

Bar Raval, Toronto. (Interior Wood Design Award).

Architect: PARTISANS.

The architects partnered with MCM Inc., a custom millworking manufacturer, to create the bar’s unique woodwork.

Pointe Cabin, Georgian. (Residential Wood Design Award)

Architect: superkul inc.

The addition to a log cottage was designed as a prefabricated, panelized wood structure to reduce both construction waste and the duration of on-site construction.

Windows on the Green condominium, Mississauga. (Multi-use Wood Design Award)

Architect: SMV Architects, Romanov Romanov Architects Inc. Engineer: RJC Engineering.

The use of wood enabled the project team to implement a cost-effective structural system which also had significant benefits in terms of the construction schedule. The builder was able to take advantage of prefabricated production processes which allowed panels to be shipped to the site, ready to be erected.

Toronto Public Library, Scarborough Civic Centre branch, Scarborough. (Institutional-Commercial Wood Design Award, project valued at less than $10 million)

Architect: LGA Architectural Partners with Philip H. Carter Architect + Urban Planning. Engineer: Blackwell.

The structure is almost entirely made of wood, from the large columns and beams down to decking and window lintels. The complex geometry was achieved through the use of a BIM model, built by the architect and engineer and then shared with the glulam manufacturer.

Gore Meadows Community Centre and Library, Phase 1, Brampton. (Institutional-Commercial Wood Design Award, project valued at more than $10 million)

Architect: ZAS Architects Inc. Engineer: Halcrow Yolles.

The building’s central organizing element is the timber-framed promenade that stretches along the main façade linking the 36,000-square-foot community centre and 34,000-square-foot public library.

Ecole Ste. Marguerite Bourgeoys kindergarten addition, Kenora. (Northern Ontario Excellence Award)

Architect: Nelson Architecture Inc. Engineer: Lavergne Draward and Associates.

The project is an addition to a circa 1970 school which had a primary structural system of glulam with a low-slope roof deck. Glulam was selected as the default structural system for the 10,000-square-foot addition.

Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, Kingston. (Jury’s Choice Award)

Architect: N45 Architecture. Engineer: Halsall.

The project team opted to re-use and re-purpose wood structural beams, columns and flooring from historic buildings on the site. As well, four different wood species were used in the interior of the main music performance hall of the Queen’s University project.

Also at the event, the 2015 Engineer Wood Advocate Award went to David Moses of Moses Structural Engineers. Moses was recognized for his demonstrated leadership in timber engineering, support of the mid-rise, wood-frame construction initiative in Ontario and ongoing efforts to educate existing and future practitioners about timber engineering.

This year’s Architect Wood Advocate Award was presented to Quadrangle Architects, acknowledged by the awards jury as a trailblazer in the industry. The firm has used wood as a key structural element in many projects over the years. Quadrangle also has helped bring about building code changes related to mid-rise, wood-frame construction.

The Wood Champion Award went to Mike Seiling, the city of Kitchener’s director of building and the immediate past-president of the Ontario Building Officials Association. Seiling helped co-ordinate forums and educational events with municipalities and OBOA chapters in the wake of code changes paving the way for construction of wood-frame buildings up to six storeys.

The awards were presented Nov.12 at an event in Vaughan.

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