Project Description

Okanagan College Trades Complex

The revitalized and expanded Okanagan College Trades Complex located in Kelowna, BC includes a significant new addition as part of an award-winning $35 million project that is targeting LEED Platinum certification. The addition comprises an extensive 47,200 sq.ft. renovation and renewal of the original building (from 1963) as well as a new 3-storey state-of-the-art addition providing a further 67,000 sq.ft. of new high-tech classroom, lab, shops and student space on the south side of the existing trades complex. The project includes renovations and improvements to several of the existing shops (automotive, RV, welding, joinery, and carpentry), a new plumbing shop, plus a significant expansion and refit of the heavy-duty shop.

Okanagan College has set ambitious goals for its Trades Training Complex: aiming to build one of the greenest buildings of its kind in North America by meeting LEED Platinum standards, net-zero energy usage, and carbon neutrality.

As with the LEED Platinum Certified Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Penticton (for which AME was also mechanical consultant), Okanagan College has once again implemented leading-edge sustainability measures into this new and updated facility, such as; recycled materials, an extensive use of wood, enhanced on-demand air filtration system, radiant heating and cooling, geothermal ground source heating and cooling, low-flow toilets and motion-detecting faucets, advanced energy-efficient HVAC systems, natural ventilation, and strategies to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG).

The project followed a Lean Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) process with the architect, engineers and contractors (PCL Construction) collaborating from the concept stage all the way through to completion. The contractors were invested in the design from the outset and the design team kept within a budget that was regularly updated to align with the Owner’s requirements and schedule. The project’s construction administration phase was more effective than a traditional design-bid-build process with fewer RFIs, change orders and site instructions.

The project completed in Spring 2016 ahead of schedule and on budget.


  • 2017 ASHRAE Technology Award – First Place Region XI and BC Chapter Award, Existing Educational Facility
  • 2017 Winner of ASHRAE’s Ralph Robson Award – for the best overall Technical Award submission in Region XI