Clayton Community Centre
The Clayton Community Centre combines four aspects of the City of Surrey’s community services —recreation, library, arts and parks — in a seamlessly integrated facility.
Located in the culturally diverse and rapidly-growing Clayton Heights neighbourhood in Surrey, BC, the facility is sited between two closely spaced secondary schools. The social fabric of the surrounding context led to a design that focuses on meeting the needs of youth, while offering gathering spaces that connect all generations.
Clayton Community Centre opened its doors in 2021 and is the first community centre to achieve Passive House in North America, and Canada’s largest Passive House facility to date.
Site and Symbiosis
Clayton Community Centre situates itself as an extension of the forest on the site and focuses on these qualities for its design. The roof and building envelope mimics the tree canopy to unify the four traditionally civic services underneath, with a leaf-like heavy timber structure spans across large spaces. The interlocking members of its pinwheel components metaphorically and structurally gain its strength by all components being interconnected.
Beneath the canopy is a space that strives to be responsive and evolving, both physically and with its activities. It’s a space for unexpected discovery and learning, and a leader in social inclusivity, offering fully universal washrooms and change rooms for Surrey’s diverse and rapidly changing demographic.
To achieve Passive House Certification, the building’s unique compact form minimizes the surface area of the floor, walls, and roof, relative to the volume that needs to be heated and cooled.
Previously operating through different funding and staffing models, the four key services now work collaboratively in the new centre under a new governance structure, facilitated as part of the design process.
The result is a unique mix of spaces that combines arts and culture programming, with music studios, recording studios and a community rehearsal hall, with recreational activities including a gymnasium and fitness centre, and a branch library.
These services are supported by shared social spaces, as well spaces for community-led programming, including a community kitchen and garden, a workshop, a café, and child-minding, preschool and childcare spaces.