John M.S. Lecky UBC Boathouse


This state-of-the-art rowing centre provides UBC and neighbouring communities with complete rowing facilities housed in two 7,000 SF boathouses. Maximizing views of the river, the floating, multi-use centre features a large events room upstairs with a kitchen, changing rooms, water level storage, boat moorage, and launch floats. Both floating buildings are surrounded by 10,000 SF of plaza floats.

The boathouse’s heavy timber superstructure was prefabricated and floated into place on top of concrete floats. On the lower level, a primary post-and-beam structure is comprised of solid Douglas-fir posts and parallel strand lumber (PSL) beams. On the second level, slim glulam posts enhance the aluminum-framed window walls, while curved horizontal glulam purlins and elliptical steel beams span the roof of the event hall.

Sustainability features include reliance on natural light and ventilation as well as protective western red cedar slat screens that provide shade for low-angle sunlight. Windows are operable to eliminate the need for air conditioning.

Client: UBC Rowing Society, UBC Athletics, and UBC Properties Trust
Architect: McFarland Marceau Architects Ltd.
Sector: Sports + Recreation
Construction Method: Mass Timber
Scope: New Build
Size: 24,000 SF
Completion Status: Completed
Year Completed: 2007
Location: Metro Vancouver