Sustainability Leadership

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Welcome to the Living Laboratory!

Dr. Andrew Hay, Vice President Education, provides a guided tour through The Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation, located at the Penticton campus of Okanagan College.

This building will serve as a critical teaching aid in the courses of the Sustainable Construction Management Technology diploma.


Okanagan College is a proven sustainability leader

Okanagan College is an industry leader in sustainability. Buildings on Okanagan College's campuses have been designed with LEED Certification and Living Building Challenge principles in mind. Students will use these buildings in their education.

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- LEED Platinum certified project.
- Largest solar photovoltaic array on a non-utility building in Western Canada.
- Voted Greenest Post-Secondary Building in Canada in 2016 (Corporate Knights magazine).
- Meets requirement of the Living Building Challenge.
- Leading venue in teaching green building design.
- Highly adaptive, as new technologies are developed they can easily replace the old.
- The building achieves net-zero water use through partnering with the local municipality.
- Due to site restrictions, the building is arranged on a north-south axis with a series of
projections to utilize the south and north light.
- Green Roof.

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- LEED Gold certified project.
- Natural Ventilation.
- Floors cooled in the summer and heated in the winter by using waste energy from nearby water treatment plant, which offsets more than 800 tonnes of GHG emissions per year
- Large array of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels.


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- Shops and infrastructure dating from 1963 were renovated and updated (approx. 5,000 sq. metres) with goal of demonstrating how existing built environment can be repurposed to be sustainable spaces. New construction (three-storey, approx.. 5,000 sq. metres) built to LEED Platinum Standards.

- Targeted for net-zero energy consumption, with the second-largest photovoltaic solar array on a non-utility institutional building in western Canada (second only to the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence at the Penticton campus).
- Enhanced, on-demand air filtration systems in shops mean significant energy savings greenhouse and gas reduction over previous facilities.
- Reverse flow ventilation technology, recovering 90 per cent of the energy from warm and cool air that is expelled from the building.
- Only building in North America to have a Radon detection system in place for applied research opportunities.
- The roof is finished with a high albedo coating to reflect heat and reduce the solar impact of the Okanagan sun. 
- In-slab radiant heating and cooling.
- Geothermal ground source for heating and cooling.
- This is a breathing building. The atrium is not air-conditioned. Windows open automatically based on seasonal air temperatures and circulate to naturally cool the building.