Diamond Schmitt’s Birgit Siber to receive lifetime achievement award

Birgit Siber achieves the Lifetime Achievement Award from Sustainable Buildings Canada (SBC). Photo courtesy Jim Ryce
Birgit Siber achieves the Lifetime Achievement Award from Sustainable Buildings Canada (SBC).
Photo courtesy Jim Ryce

Birgit Siber, a principal at Diamond Schmitt Architects, is receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award from Sustainable Buildings Canada (SBC) for her commitment to sustainable design.

The award acknowledges Siber’s green building initiatives through advocacy, research, innovation, and design excellence across a range of building types.

“This award is for exemplary devotion to the cause of greater sustainability in the built environment,” said Mike Singleton, SBC executive director.

Siber has practiced architecture at Diamond Schmitt since 1996 and became a principal in 2003. She led the design installation of the first large-scale living wall biofilter in Canada more than a decade ago at the University of Guelph Humber campus. Its success spawned dozens more in Diamond Schmitt projects in Canada and the United States. She also spearheaded ecoMetrics, an energy-use benchmarking databank and analysis tool to highlight and inform strategies for energy-use reduction.

As project architect, Siber has focused on institutional and laboratory projects. These include the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum-certified CANMET Metallurgical Materials laboratory in Hamilton, the recipient of the 2015 American Institute of Architects (AIA) COTE Top 10 Award for sustainable design. Lazaridis Hall at Wilfrid Laurier University achieved LEED Gold certification and won a Civic Trust Award (United Kingdom) and Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) Excellence in Architecture Award (United States) in 2019.

“I think of architecture as a team sport, a creative and complex opportunity to work collaboratively toward sustainable design solutions,” said Siber.

Siber serves on the Toronto 2030 District Advisory Board and the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) Committee of Regenerative Environments (CORE). She chairs the office sustainable design committee and has presented at Canadian and international sustainability conferences, contributing to the design conversation on biophilia, resilience, energy literacy, and net-zero energy.

The award will be presented at the Green Building Festival in Toronto in October.

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