Healthcare lodge honoured with inaugural wood award

 The walls in the Kordyban Lodge’s meditation space were finished with Western red cedar for its sound suppression and absorption qualities. Photos © Derek Lepper Photography
The walls in the Kordyban Lodge’s meditation space were finished with Western red cedar for its sound suppression and absorption qualities. Photos © Derek Lepper Photography

Vancouver’s NSDA Architects was presented with the inaugural Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) Award earlier this month, as part of the 10th annual Wood WORKS! B.C. Wood Design Awards. The firm was recognized for its innovative use of wood certified to the SFI standard in the new Kordyban Lodge, a Canadian Cancer Society facility located in Prince George, B.C.

“It is an honour to receive this inaugural award and be recognized by both SFI and the Wood WORKS! B.C. program for NSDA’s work on the Kordyban Lodge,” NSDA partner, Jerry Doll, said. “We are continually striving to create spirited and innovative architecture that showcases wood at its finest, while responding thoughtfully to community needs. Most importantly, for cancer patients and their families, the use of wood in Kordyban Lodge helped create a life-affirming residential environment contributing to their physical, emotional, and psychological well-being.”

The 36-bed facility provides accommodation for out-of-town residents receiving medical treatments at the centre. Its design allows for natural light to filter through the public rooms, circulation spaces, and private areas. The social areas are two-storey shed volumes with a Douglas fir timber structure, Western red cedar ceilings, and floor-to-ceiling glazing. The facility’s roof boasts engineered sloped roof trusses and spruce-pine-fir framing materials.

On the interior, Western red cedar ceilings and panelling in combination with solid maple slats and trims, maple veneer panels, and wood cabinetry give the spaces a feeling of warmth and add a natural character and distinctiveness. For its sound suppression and absorption qualities, the walls in the meditation space and family room are also finished with Western red cedar.

The use of wood in the Canadian Cancer Society facility provides occupants with a comfortable, residential environment.
The use of wood in the Canadian Cancer Society facility provides occupants with a comfortable, residential environment.

Further, an entrance canopy constructed of glued-laminated timber (glulam) columns and beams, paired purlins, and exposed wood decking welcomes visitors into the lodge. On the north elevation, a covered walkway entrance to the cancer society offices is defined by the ‘rhythm’ of glulam columns supporting a large roof overhang. Western red cedar was specified for the exterior and interior finish. This was chosen for its rich colour and tactile texture, as well as its durability, dimensional stability, and performance characteristics.

The project was seen as an opportunity to showcase the beauty of wood, its durability, versatility, cost-effectiveness and sustainability, but most importantly, wood’s ability to create a life-affirming residential environment for cancer patients and their families.

The wood products certified to the SFI standard—material sourced from renewable, responsibly harvested forests—used in the Kordyban Lodge include the engineered roof trusses, pre-fabricated walls, studs, sheathing plywood, and laminated veneer lumber (LVL).

“Kordyban Lodge is a showcase of the warmth, beauty, versatility, and durability of wood from sustainably managed forests,” SFI president Kathy Abusow said. “Future forests require responsible forestry, and this project is a prime example of the positive contribution that building with wood from sustainably managed forests can make—particularly in a region where the community is supported by the forestry sector.”

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