Built in 1942, the Lightworks office building was originally home to Cemco Electrical, an electrical factory who produced electrical components used in the Allied war effort in WWII. Rich with history but in need of renovation, a re-design and addition was proposed for the golden era, Art Deco influenced building. Standing six storeys in height, the project consists of 7,200 ft2 of commercial space at ground level with four levels of office space totalling 11,700 ft2, accompanied by two levels for parking featuring 70 parking stalls for vehicles. Once completed the entire Lightworks building will be just over 54,000 ft2. It is intended that the existing building façade will remain intact and be incorporated into the overall new design, which is targeting technology and design industries as future tenants. The site has been proposed as a “Class B” heritage site on the City of Vancouver’s Heritage Register.
Williams Engineering (WE) supplied mechanical design services for the Lightworks office building project which included heating, ventilation, air conditioning, plumbing and fire protection. The buildings heating and air-conditioning is provided by a distributed heat pump system with central fluid cooler and boiler plant. Ventilation is provided by a heat recovery make-up air unit which provides tempered air to the return side of each distributed heat pump. Requirements for high rise building smoke control systems, includes ventilation for the emergency generator room. The base building domestic hot water is provided by point-of-use electrical hot water tanks. Plumbing is designed for all base building fixtures, roof and site drainage requirements. Plumbing rough-in services are designed for all base building commercial and retail spaces for the future connection by tenants. A performance specification sprinkler system and fire pump is designed to meet NFPA-13 requirements. The Lightworks office building will be designed to energy efficient standards of ASHARE 90.1 2010, incorporating sustainable practices where applicable.
Integrating new construction into a historical building renovation can be a challenging task; WE has extensive experience providing renovations to existing buildings and incorporating additions to historical buildings. As the Lightworks office building nears completion, the revitalized structure is a welcomed addition to the Mount Pleasant neighborhood in downtown Vancouver.