Terri Meyer Boake B.E.S. B.Arch. M.Arch.
Associate Professor School of Architecture University of Waterloo

Case Studies in Canadian Sustainable Design:
Image Gallery:

Semiahmoo Library and RCMP Station

Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership

Surrey, British Columbia

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quick facts
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Project Information:
Musson Cattell Mackey Partnership (MCMP), Darrell J. Epp Architect, Norson Construction

Canada's First LEED Certified Library (Silver)

(Information taken from CaGBC website) The Semiahmoo Library & RCMP District Office was designed to combine cost effectiveness, green building objectives, and functional efficiency for two very different community services.

The building uses water saving features both inside and out. Within the building, waterless urinals, low flush toilets and low flow water faucets reduce water use by 30% compared to similar buildings constructed to the National Energy Code. The drought tolerant native plants in the landscaping minimize the need for irrigation.

At completion, it was estimated that the Semiahmoo Library & RCMP District Office would consume about 49% less energy than a similar building constructed to the Model National Energy Code for Buildings. The main factors responsible for the savings are the overall building design, the design of the mechanical and electrical systems, and the building envelope system, including the reflective roofing material and high performance glazing system.

The project diverted 88% of materials from the landfill by implementing a construction waste management plan. In order to support the regional economy, the project used 41% locally manufactured materials. To help further the closure of energy and waste loops, 54% of the buildings materials contain recycled content.

To create a more comfortable interior environment for employees and patrons, temperature, humidity, lighting and CO2 monitoring control equipment were installed. Through the use of low-emitting materials, including paint, carpet, and composite wood, the well-being of occupants is also improved.

The library stacks and reading spaces are largely daylit via clerestory windows, with some supplemental task lighting as well as wall windows on the north side of the building. The roof overhangs (in general) provide protection from direct sunlight through the clerestory windows.

For more information, please visit: http://www.usgbc.org/Docs/Certified_Projects/Cert_Reg113.pdf

Front facade of building, facing east. Access to parking and glazed galleria space that provides access to the RCMP offices, community meeting spaces and library (2nd floor)..
Side of building, facing largely south.

Front corner of building showing roof overhangs.
Indigenous plantings on south side of building. Fixed windows due to security concerns of occupancies preclude natural ventilation/occupant control.

Shading device over south window in reading area.
South east corner/entrance to building.
Looking up at steel framed roof overhang at clerestory windows.
Inside the entry galleria. Selective glazing cuts out much solar gain, but even mid morning in early July, this space was very warm...
View from on the stair landing towards the galleria.
View from the stair landing to the steel framed galleria roof.
Inside the library. Wall at left of image looks into galleria. Wall straight ahead faces south street.
View looking towards galleria and up at steel framed roof.
Punched windows allow light into reading room with lower roof height.
View across library computer area in centre of space.
View along the stacks indicating the light level and comfort of space.
Patron browsing in the stacks, directly below clerestory.

student prepared building sections

The images on this site have been taken for use in my teaching. They may be copied for educational purposes. Please give credit. These images may not be reproduced commercially without written consent.

last updated June 3, 2005