Cowichan Bay Fire Hall rendering.

Cowichan Bay Fire Hall


Cowichan Bay, BC

hcma is working with the Cowichan Bay Improvement District – the governing body for Cowichan Bay Volunteer Fire Rescue—to replace their aging fire hall. With a very limited budget and the need to source all funding through taxation of the regional district residents, the team has been laser-focused on finding ways to leverage the combined brain trust of innovative engineers and designers towards reducing the per square meter construction cost. 

From close examination of the facility program during the programming and conceptual planning stage, to repeated comparative options evaluation for layout, massing, articulation, material selection, and systems, this project minimizes capital costs while still ensuring a future-proof facility.

Through this process the team chose to emphasize and focus on the structural aspect of the project as being the main design driver, making the structural system give the design more from less. Locally fabricated engineered wood trusses were chosen for the structural system which created a rhythm throughout the building design over both the apparatus bays and the adjacent support spaces, making for light and warm spaces for the volunteer firefighters to perform their daily tasks.


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