Saturday, January 23, 2010

Richmond Olympic Oval

Vancouver Sun / The first competition at the Richmond oval: the Canadian Single Distance Championships in December.Photograph by: Ian Lindsay, Vancouver Sun

Richmond's Olympic Oval is quite an amazing venue.

The website boasts:
Located minutes from Vancouver International
Airport, the Oval is a breathtaking facility
along the banks of the Fraser River and
a hallmark of public accessibility, environmental
sustainability and worldclass sportsmanship.

Honored with several awards including the Institution of Structural
Engineers 2009 Award for Sports or Leisure Structures, the building
has spacious, modern interiors featuring wood floors, natural light
and a broad public art program incorporated into the Oval itself and
its immediate surroundings.

Large panes of glass along the exterior walls allow natural lighting and provide unique river views.

The unique design includes large paned glass allowing natural lighting and beautiful views of the Fraser River, a giant 2 hectare roof made of "salvaged British Columbia wood that was damaged by a pine-beetle infestation" and a rain collection system which is used for irrigation and the buildings utility systems (toilet flushing).

Perhaps it's most unique feature is the "Waste Heat Energy Recovery"

This energy, recovered from ice-making is reused for heating and cooling water, the building and the rink. It is comparable to the heat you feel beside your fridge or freezer... this extra energy is being used for other sources in the building making it a "green" or "environmentally friendly" energy source.

It is a complex design of tubes and pipes throughout the building that create a "sustainable legacy"

It is a state-of-the-art design and has already recieved numerous awards including:

  • The Institutional Design Award from BC Wood WORKS!/Canadian Wood Council.

  • The Innovation in Architecture Award of Excellence from the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada.

  • The Green Building Practices Award from the Globe Foundation and World Green Building Council.

  • The Sustainability Star from the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee.

  • Considered by many to be the shining star of the Olympic Venues, it will be open to the public April 1, 2010.

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