Conference to explore Living Buildings in Victoria

Conference to explore Living Buildings in Victoria

The Living Building Challenge, created in 2006 by Cascadia Green Building Council founder Jason F. Mclennan, is the first building standard designed to go beyond simple reduction of environmental impact and take a restorative approach with the intent of creating zero impact and actively providing a net benefit to the surrounding area.

Rather than using credits or points like the familiar LEED rating system, the Living Building Challenge has twenty Imperatives, all of which must be met to achieve certification. To date, only a handful of projects worldwide have met the criteria, including one which achieved partial certification here in my home city of Victoria. Eco-Sense, a code-approved cob house completed in 2008, was started before the Living Building Challenge was first released and was adapted to fit the challenge and amazingly managed to meet more than 75% of the requirements. Since then, several more projects in British Columbia have aimed for Living Building status, including the VanDusen Botanical Gardens project in Vancouver, and the Okanagan College Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Penticton.

The Living Building Challenge was created in the Cascadia bioregion, but can be adapted to virtually any location on the Earth. However, it is still relatively unknown, compared to more familiar standards such as LEED, EnergyStar or Built Green. Certain forward-thinking companies are tackling the Living Building Challenge, seeing it as as the future of truly green building. Ledcor Construction Ltd. and CEI Architecture are two companies that have taken on Living Building Challenge projects, and will be presenting these projects at the 2012 Living Building Symposium held in Victoria BC.

The Living Building Symposium is a one day event focused on presenting the twenty imperatives of the Living Building Challenge from a variety of professional perspectives, ranging from the health impacts of buildings and local food on a single person, up to the concept of Ecodistricts and the potential of widespread adoption of the Living Building concept. The lectures will attempt to demystify the Living Building Challenge, and

Presenters at the 2012 Living Building Symposium include Marsha Gentile from Ledcor Construction Ltd, Robert Parlane from CEI Architecture, Dave Asprey from The Bulletproof Executive, Brianne Czypyha from the BC Capital Regional District, Keenan Turner & Joss Krayenhoff from SIREWALL, Richard Iredale of Iredale Group Architecture, and Cascadia founder Jason McLennan.

The 2012 Living Building Symposium is being held on May 31st at the Victoria Conference Centre, tickets are $55, and $30 for Cascadia members & students.

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Steve holds a degree in Environmental Engineering Technology from Humber College in Toronto, is a LEED Accredited Professional and a Certified Sustainable Building Advisor. He currently lives in Victoria BC and works as a green building consultant specializing in residential projects.


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