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Multi-faculty complex shines at architectural awards

July 9, 2009

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SFU’s new Burnaby campus multi-faculty development embodying Blusson Hall and Saywell Hall has earned top honours from the province’s architects.

The Architectural Institute of British Columbia (AIBC) has given the building designed by Busby Perkins+Will Architects its highest award, the Lieutenant-Governor Award in Architecture medal, citing it as "a perfect example of modern architecture blending with iconic, established surroundings."

"We are, of course, delighted by the award," says Lee Gavel, SFU’s chief facilities officer and university architect, "but the building is much more than just a distinctive concrete structure with a beautiful scale – it’s also a model of sustainability.

"It exceeds Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver standards with numerous ecologically friendly features such as a planted roof, sustainably harvested timber, underground storm-water collection for irrigation, a minimal use of off-gassing construction materials, radiant-floor heating and abundant natural light."

Saywell Hall houses the university’s archaeology, clinical psychology, criminology, First Nations studies programs and the Centre for Forensics Research, while Blusson Hall is home to the new Faculty of Health Sciences.

"With this complex," the AIBC notes, "architect Peter Busby and his team solved the design challenge of creating a truly interconnected environment, both physically and philosophically, for several distinct academic departments.

"The resulting structure is both fresh and innovative while paying homage to the pre-existing iconic architecture of Erickson Massey."

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