UBC Okanagan and Okanagan College shook hands on a plan to create a hub for green innovation, pooling their research talent to create a Green Construction Research and Training Centre.
The construction centre will aim to provide new ways for students to research and create environmentally friendly building projects, using green materials to create infrastructure that is “safe, durable, energy-efficient and affordable”.
The joint initiative continues a trend of close collaboration between the two post-secondary schools on sustainable engineering.
Winner of the 2018 Researcher of the Year Award, Shahria Alam who is a professor in UBCO’s school of engineering, will serve as the first director of the new centre.
“We are already starting to develop shared capstone projects for our students and establishing a speaker series that focuses on green construction and smart energy use,” said Shahria Alam, whose research focuses on the use of smart materials in infrastructure.
Andrew Hay, Okanagan College’s vice president of education, described the centre as an ideal meeting point between the two schools’ green research goals.
“This centre ties in extremely well with our institutional focus on sustainability,” he said.
In addition to students and faculty, the centre will bring together various municipalities, provincial bodies and construction associations. Infrastructure Canada will also be brought into the fold.
“Bringing together the expertise of our research faculty along with our colleagues from Okanagan College, we are confident that the Centre will have a long-lasting positive impact into the future.”
A speaker series has been launched for the centre – most recently with Polytechnique Montreal professor Robert Tremblay’s seminar on the seismic design of steel structures.
More information on the speaker series is available at the centre’s webpage.