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Photo courtesy of LMN Architects


The world’s first double LEED Platinum convention center, Vancouver Convention Centre West fully integrates the urban ecosystem at the intersection of a vibrant Vancouver downtown condos section and one of the most spectacular natural ecosystems in North America. The culmination of two decades of planning and redevelopment for its waterfront neighborhood, the project weaves together architecture, interior architecture, and urban design in a unified whole that functions literally as a living part of both the city and the harbor. (…)

The iconic living roof, visible from throughout the city, forms the terminus of a chain of waterfront parks that rings the harbor and creates continuous stepping-stone habitat between the convention center and Stanley Park. Less visible but equally productive, an artificial concrete reef drops below the waterfront promenade, designed in collaboration with marine biologists to restore the ecology of the natural shoreline.

The building’s landforms create a topographical experience on the interior. Materiality is based around the use of indigenous British Columbia wood, expressed in the strong directional lines of the ceiling plane as well as wall cladding that simulates the texture of stacks of lumber.

The interior is constantly connected to daylight and views, setting up an extroverted, community-friendly relationship with the exterior and connecting the interior experience with the life of the city and the waterfront. Transparency serves as an orienting device for users in the facility, anchoring each space to the unique views available from its vantage point. By night, the lit interior creates an urban lantern at the water’s edge. (…)

The slopes set up natural drainage and seed migration patterns for the roof’s ecology. The roof has no public access points, allowing it to develop as a fully functional habitat for migrating wildlife, while the landforms fold to allow views onto the lush vegetation from inside and outside the building.

A water conservation and reuse system reduces potable water use by 70%, including an on-site blackwater treatment plant that cycles all wastewater from the building including stormwater from the living roof, and returns it for irrigation and other gray water needs. [1]



2013 AIA National Honor Award for Architecture
2013 AIA National Honor Award for Regional and Urban Design
2013 World Architecture News Sustainable Building of the Year
2011 AIA Committee on the Environment Award
2011 AIA National Honor Award for Interior Architecture
2011 AIA Award for Outstanding Renovation Project
2011 World Architecture News Effectiveness Award
2010 AIA Northwest & Pacific Region Honor Award
2010 Urban Land Institute Global Award for Excellence: The Americas Competition
2009 AIA Seattle Chapter Honor Award


[1]      Welch, Adrian, and Isabelle Lomholt. “Vancouver Convention CENTRE West Building – e-Architect.” e, July 9, 2021. https://www.e-architect.com/canada/vancouver-convention-centre-west.

Additional information:

Minner, Kelly. “Vancouver Convention CENTRE West / Mcm + DA + LMN.” ArchDaily. ArchDaily, April 25, 2011. https://www.archdaily.com/130373/vancouver-convention-centre-west-lmn-da-with-mcm.

“The Vancouver Convention .” Canadian Architect. Accessed August 31, 2021. https://www.canadianarchitect.com/aibc-previews-sessions-mays-spaces-conference/1024px-2009-0604-vancouverconventioncentrew/.

“Vancouver Convention CENTER West: Lmn Architects.” Arch2O.com, May 17, 2021. https://www.arch2o.com/vancouver-convention-centre-west-lmn-architects/.

“Vancouver Convention CENTRE WEST.” LMN Architects, August 30, 2021. https://lmnarchitects.com/project/vancouver-convention-centre-west.

“Vancouver Convention CENTRE WEST.” Vancouver Convention Centre West | AIA Top Ten, April 1, 1970. https://www.aiatopten.org/node/105.

“Vancouver Convention Centre.” MCMP Architects, n.d. https://www.mcmparchitects.com/projects/vancouver-convention-centre-west/.

Zeiger, Mimi. “Vancouver Convention CENTRE WEST.” Architect, November 9, 2010. https://www.architectmagazine.com/awards/annual-design-review/vancouver-convention-centre-west_o.

The Architects: Vancouver Convention Centre. Vancouver Convention Centre. YouTube, 2009. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0cxBFEIM7PQ.

Project Title: Vancouver Convention Centre
Artists: LMN Architects
Year: 2009

Place: Vancouver, British Columbia

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