Vancouver fire hall project wins Station Design Award in Shared Facilities category
Vancouver Fire Hall No. 5 & YWCA Pacific Spirit Terrace has won a Gold Award in the 2020 Firehouse Station Design Awards in the Shared Facilities Awards category.
Located in Vancouver’s Killarney neighbourhood, Vancouver Fire Hall No. 5 has served the Champlain Heights and East Fraser Lands communities since 1952.
As the building reached the end of its service life both programmatically and seismically, the replacement of the hall was overdue and provides the community with an innovative, colocation facility which is the first of its kind in Canada, ready to serve the needs of residents safely and effectively.
Aiming for LEED Gold, the new fire hall’s design not only combines key concepts of sustainable architecture with the specific programmatic needs of the Vancouver Fire & Rescue Services, it also brings increased density to the area and creates effective use of City land through the addition of 4-stories of two and three-bedroom homes for single mothers and their children.
The 12,000 sq ft fire hall includes three apparatus bays and supporting spaces including a community room which doubles as a VFRS training room. This meeting space serves as an interface between VFRS and the community, allowing for potential booking opportunities for community groups and activities such as CPR and first aid courses, blood pressure clinics, and training for volunteer groups.
Architecturally combining two extremely different user groups on a small site and providing each of them with their own identity was one of the largest challenges that faced the design team. Issues around security, privacy, shared facilities, and combined services were some of the complications which were addressed during the design.
Additionally, protective services facilities need to be designed to post-disaster standards, and as a result the entire building must be able to withstand seismic forces 1.5 times those required for a regular structure.
The successful combination of needs and increased value through this project allows for improved allocation of citywide resources and provides exceptional value in comparison to similar facilities in Vancouver.