Monday, May 23, 2011

New Buildings

Inside the New Penticton Swimming Pool opening in June

The New OUTMA SQILX'W Cultural School in Penticton 

The Cultural Room, ( seen through a glass window hence the weird reflections.)
Times are changing. In many parts of the world architects are designing ecologically friendly buildings, and here in Penticton we were privileged to be shown around a few of them on Saturday, as part of our Meadowlark Festival. We saw several houses with new systems of heating and cooling, using for example water underground, "geothermal" systems, and rolling doors on opposite sides of a room to allow air circulation, and under floor water-cooling to counter day-time solar heating. Basements seem to be disappearing, and houses getting smaller. One house had flat roofs coated in white super-reflective material. Another had walls made of straw...We next saw the new 7000-square foot Okanagan College, with plants growing on the roof, (to use up carbon-dioxide, and release oxygen,) and solar-powered heating and cooling. It seems that air-conditioners will soon be gone. The college building will open in a week or so and increase enrollment from 300 to 800. We need apparently to use only 2% of the earth's surface to be self sufficient power-wise, using the sun's light, and that is less than all the roof-tops of our buildings! Denmark's government now has planned for Denmark to be free of fossil fuel dependency by 2050. The Danish island of Samsø is already independent, using windmills for electricity, and no vehicles use gasoline any more there.
We were shown a brand new school on the First Nations reserve, opened a month ago, and a new swimming pool in Penticton to be opened next month. More photos of our trip around our area, in (of all things) a School Bus, can be found here.

5 comments:

H said...

It's very good to see environmentally friendly buildings being designed and constructed. I know a couple of people with geothermal underfloor heating. They are very impressed with how efficient it is.

Desiree said...

My daughter did her Economics honours thesis on 'Green Building' in SA...I am going to refer her to your blog as I know she will be most interested.

jennyfreckles said...

It's so encouraging that people are beginning to take 'green building' seriously. And what attractive buildings you show us here.

Lisa RedWillow said...

What a wonderful building. Theres a new one going up in my area called The Spirit Center.
I cant wait until it finished.

Alan Burnett said...

We have just got a new Swimming Pool here in Brighouse (built with money obtained from selling Calderdales' share in Leeds Bradford Airport) and we are just off there for a swim in a few minutes. Grand as our new facility is - it cannot compare with that wonderful building of yours.