August 2012

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COURTESY YELLOWRIDGE CONSTRUCTION LTD. assembly with a two-ply membrane, with a highly re lective cap sheet to reduce the heat island effect; and low water usage ixtures. Rundell says the cutting-edge features create an optimal learning environment. "Every classroom has large windows to increase daylighting, which helps improve student performance. Large glass curtain walls in the library and many commons areas are also featured. Fresh air is mixed into the building's air supply and provides complete building air exchanges, which has health and productivity bene its." Acoustic measures within the walls reduces the impact sounds from corridors and adjacent classrooms, vastly improving noise management. Voice sound systems, new computers and smart boards are also implemented to improve student-teacher communication and learning. Vernon Secondary is divided into three independent structures 'glued' together by expansion joints across the width of the building. The school incorporates high-quality inishes and, consequently, the project has taken slightly longer than expected to complete. "In the past, we've been able to build schools in 10 months from start to inish," says Krzywicki. "However, in such instances, there would be very basic structural elements and inishes." Yellowridge wanted the project completed by September 2012, however, due to re inements in design, it will likely be a month or two later. "We didn't want to compromise quality and workmanship. The community and users will forget the building wasn't open in time for the new school year, but wouldn't forget if the end product boasted mediocre quality and workmanship." Rob Fershau, of CTQ Consultants, oversaw the landscape architecture. He was required to incorporate playing ields, hard-surface courts, circulation/safety and accessibility/bus drop-off areas, while addressing the issues of vandalism and maintaining a large school site on limited resources. "The challenge became how to address these issues while creating distinct outdoor spaces that allow for educational opportunities, social gathering and outdoor events," he says. "A balance between creating a sense of place and a manageable site was struck – resulting in a landscape that engages both staff and students; instilling pride and creating community." A standout landscape feature is its perimeter fence. The low, sinuous 200-metre wall weaves around the portion of the site which abuts the neighbourhood, creating a barrier to traf ic (and discouraging graf iti), without enclosure from the community. The school's South Plaza is also exceptional. "We designed it as a sun-drenched amphitheatre, with large- Vernon Secondary School by John Atkinson nnovative and energy-ef icient, the reconstruction of Vernon Secondary School is a itting transformation for School District #22's largest facility. The three-storey, LEED Gold structure, which resembles a capital letter 'Y', is situated on a 184,500-square-foot plot and constructed of a mixture of concrete, steel and concrete block. MQN Architects and CTQ Consultants – collaborating with School District #22 – led the design with assistance from engineering irms R&A Engineering and Falcon Engineering. Under the administration of general contractor Yellowridge Construction and project manager Paul Krzywicki, the design was brought to life. "MQN Architects and its consultants have done a great job in designing a building that pushes the 100year lifespan expectancy," says Krzywicki. "There's nothing 'cookie cutter' about it. It's unique in both its design and components. Vernon Secondary was a blank palette for School District #22 to incorporate what worked well in the past." The school will house 19 classrooms, six science labs, two art studios, a teaching kitchen, theatre, music room, library, three shops, gym and multi-purpose space. It will have plazas at the north and south entrances, along with two soccer ields, a baseball diamond, plus basketball and volleyball courts. According to Bev Rundell, School District #22's assistant superintendent, the school's innovative features include the ground source heat exchanger and geothermal ield (under the sports ields) which will capture energy and transfer it to the heating and cooling systems. The building envelope combines structural masonry block and structural steel with steel stud framing and exterior sheathing, while the walls feature spray-foam insulation. Other features include metal panels and masonry veneer as the inal exterior layer; a lighting control system to reduce electrical consumption; a roof I format stair/seatwalls tiered down to a substantial centre," says Fershau. "The site combines local boulders, hardy native evergreen and shrub species, plus ornamental grasses, to provide year-round interest and limit overall water consumption." Greg Wylie, principal at R&A Engineering, structural engineer, provided full working drawings and speci ications for the design of the concrete, reinforcing, structural steel, masonry and wood elements – plus the lateral design for wind and seismic issues. He points to the use of two-storey-high, sloped interior concrete columns in the commons area. "R&A worked closely with MQN Architects to achieve this look and function," he says. "We combined the necessity of some diagonal steel bracing on the exterior with the architectural desire to highlight these elements and bring the theme inside, while solving the structural challenge of long spans and open space in the commons area. The lateral system for the library and the two-storey steel diagonal bracing along the exterior glazing in a faceted pattern was a natural choice to re lect the similar commons area theme." ■ LOCATION 2303 18 Street Vernon, B.C. OWNER/DEVELOPER School District #22 (Vernon) ARCHITECT MQN Architects GENERAL CONTRACTOR Yellowridge Construction Ltd. STRUCTURAL CONSULTANT R&A Engineering ELECTRICAL CONSULTANT Falcon Engineering STRUCTURAL STEEL CONSULTANT TGC Consulting Ltd. LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT/ CIVIL CONSULTANT CTQ Consultants TOTAL AREA 184,500 square feet TOTAL CONSTRUCTION COST $38 million Building to a higher standard with innovative German technology CONCRETE CONSTRUCTION Pleased to be a part of the Vernon Secondary School project. Ph: 250-832-7357 Fax: 250-832-8316 Supply and Install: Formwork, Concrete, Reinforcing Steel, Tower Cranes Concrete forming specialist with own European form system Head Office: 102/ AUGUST 2012 p.102-103Vernon Secondary School.indd 102 Vernon Secondary School 7/13/12 10:48 AM

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