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Index

Central City/SFU Surrey

Surrey, BC
Info

Central City is a project born of Surrey’s complex history as an edge city south of Vancouver, whose rapid growth and lack of planning left it without a sense of a city centre. Having identified the need for a large mixed-use development with a significant public sector component, BTA brought together three clients – the provincial government, a university, and an insurance company – to redevelop a declining shopping centre, on top of which was constructed space for the university and an integrated office tower for the insurance company. By combining the activities of the shopping centre and the University, all parties saved significant capital costs, construction costs, and operational costs.

A large civic plaza – the first urban open space in Surrey – marks the entrance to the building. A series of atria organize the building on the inside and bathe the interior with natural light. Heavy timber construction, historically associated with British Columbia, is used here in a contemporary and technologically advanced way. A design-build arrangement allowed the architects to work with a wood fabricator to develop and build three distinct timber systems, including a wood space frame constructed from peeler cores, a waste product from the plywood industry.

Facts

  • Client:ICBC Properties
  • Type:Institutional, Commercial, Mixed Use, Urban Design
  • Size:1,000,000 sq ft
  • Budget:$135 million
  • Status:Completed 2004

Awards

  • Commercial Award of Excellence, Surrey NewCity Design Awards
  • Interiors Award of Excellence, Surrey NewCity Design Awards
  • Citation Award, Wood Design Awards
  • Illuminating Engineering Society Lighting Design Awards
  • Marche International des Professionels de l’Immobilier Special Jury Prize
  • Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia Medal in Architecture, AIBC
  • Architectural Institute of British Columbia Innovation Award

Central City/SFU Surrey

Surrey, BC

Central City is a project born of Surrey’s complex history as an edge city south of Vancouver, whose rapid growth and lack of planning left it without a sense of a city centre. Having identified the need for a large mixed-use development with a significant public sector component, BTA brought together three clients – the provincial government, a university, and an insurance company – to redevelop a declining shopping centre, on top of which was constructed space for the university and an integrated office tower for the insurance company. By combining the activities of the shopping centre and the University, all parties saved significant capital costs, construction costs, and operational costs.

A large civic plaza – the first urban open space in Surrey – marks the entrance to the building. A series of atria organize the building on the inside and bathe the interior with natural light. Heavy timber construction, historically associated with British Columbia, is used here in a contemporary and technologically advanced way. A design-build arrangement allowed the architects to work with a wood fabricator to develop and build three distinct timber systems, including a wood space frame constructed from peeler cores, a waste product from the plywood industry.

Facts

  • ClientICBC Properties
  • TypeInstitutional, Commercial, Mixed Use, Urban Design
  • Size1,000,000 sq ft
  • Budget$135 million
  • StatusCompleted 2004

Awards

  • Commercial Award of Excellence, Surrey NewCity Design Awards
  • Interiors Award of Excellence, Surrey NewCity Design Awards
  • Citation Award, Wood Design Awards
  • Illuminating Engineering Society Lighting Design Awards
  • Marche International des Professionels de l’Immobilier Special Jury Prize
  • Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia Medal in Architecture, AIBC
  • Architectural Institute of British Columbia Innovation Award
Photography © Nic Lehoux