The new visitor's centre at VanDusen Botanical Garden is not only visually appealing, it's also a feat of engineering.
Fast & Epp, the Vancouverbased structural engineering firm that designed the centre, recently won first place in the inaugural World Architecture News Engineering Awards.
According to the London, England-based WAN, the panel deciding the winner noted the visitor's centre was the first building competing for the award that displayed such a high level of aesthetics. Comments included on WAN's website read in part, "The 'geometrically complex form set the project aside from the rest, which presented a 'form relating to the environmental performance.' What pushed this project to the top was the fact it widened the boundaries of engineering through a differing angle- A cunning blend of technology within this project deserved without a doubt to become the winner of the award this year."
Other local projects completed by Fast & Epp include the roof of the Richmond Olympic Oval, the Trout Lake Community Centre and Arena, and the Sunset and False Creek community centres.
KITS OPEN HOUSE
I'm sure all of the community centres across the city are gearing up for their fall sessions, but so far the only heads up I've received is from Kitsilano on Larch Street.
The Kitsilano Community Centre is hosting an open house Sept. 9 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and offering free classes for visitors to try. One of the classes offered is called "Feldenkrais," which to be honest I had to research online. It turns out Feldenkrais is a method of "movement education."
Other free classes offered that day include Indian classical dance, chair yoga, hip hop and Zumba for children and Yoga4Stiff Guys. For a complete schedule visit vancouver.ca and search for Kitsilano Community Centre.
PARKS AND INFORMATION
Since the park board and city combined their websites and services recently, it's becoming increasingly difficult to receive information regarding park boardrelated activities, so I'm considering new names for this column.
A favourite option is "Central Perk," which in that case I'll just spend all my time drinking coffee instead of having to search Twitter, Facebook, Google and the park board's new website for news.
Kudos to Vision Vancouver park board chair Sarah Blyth, who has gone out of her way to keep me informed, but that's not her job. Park board communications manager Joyce Courtney has also promised to help me keep informed, so now I've become a special project.
There was a time, back in the day, when a park board or cityrelated event of note was going to take place something called a news release would be emailed to a list of media, but apparently that is no longer the case.
I don't know if there have been cutbacks in the city and park board's communications departments, but receiving news releases has become a thing of the past.
On that note, according the Province newspaper, the prestigious Frommer's travel website has named Vancouver one of the 10 most walkable cities in the world, alongside Paris, Florence, Melbourne, Edinburgh, New York, Boston, Dubrovnik, Munich and Sydney, Australia. Vancouver was the only Canadian city to make the list and New York and Boston are the only other North American cities. The seawall around Stanley Park received special mention by Frommer's.
Thank you, Province.