LocationCanadian Forces Base Borden, Adjala-Tosorontio, ON L0M 1C0, Canada
Architect in ChargeJean-Christian Koch, Paul Stevens
Other ParticipantsSusan Lennox, David Bowick, Princ. Eng. - Pierre-Alexandre Koch, Anish Jain
Text description provided by the architects. The Curtiss and Vickers facilities are two new dining facilities intended to replace the dozen or so disparate ones currently being used at CFB Borden. These would integrate into the base’s masterplan of a pedestrian campus and nearly all diners would reach it by foot.
The program includes the dining hall, kitchen facilities and office areas, as well as washroom and first aid facilities for the adjacent soccer pitches. The facility is designed to address current food service deficiencies and to prepare for future needs, seating 750 at a time, 1,500 diners per meal (through 2 sittings).
The design strategy for this new prototype kitchen and dining facility focused on providing a pleasant, efficient and enduring building with plenty of natural light and optimized interior traffic flows and to provide the Military Service Personnel and staff state of the art kitchen equipment.
The exterior forms are deliberately orthogonal, streamlined and understated in order to produce an elegant, timeless building that fits in with the existing built environment at the base. As you enter the facility the aesthetic changes, the building interior takes the form of the dramatic glue laminated arboriform wood structure of the columns and beams, in reference to the pine forests that were once dominant in the area. These structural elements, along with the sweeping views of the natural context provided by floor to ceiling curtain wall, aim to provide the diner a comfortable, peaceful environment for meals – better to appreciate the respite in otherwise often grueling schedules. Graphics along the walls carry this sylvan theme into the service area.
It is difficult to overstate the importance of wayfinding forward flow in such a facility. The building’s plan, forms, colour and materials are all used effectively to convey an intuitive understanding of path and use – diners who have never entered the building are naturally brought through the facility in a loop, completing it with no cross-circulation. This is very important considering the volume of diners. Forward flow design is also used in the service and kitchen areas. From deliveries to the table and back to the trash, the design is carefully tailored to avoid cross- traffic.
The use of form and colour to help inform clients is also utilized on the exterior. Spaces intended for the public are housed in the light coloured, taller block, while the darker block is reserved for the technical and kitchen areas.
This project is targeted LEED Silver certification. Along with common ecological features, the project was particularly innovative in the use of ultra-high efficiency kitchen equipment and providing daylight and exterior views - something seldom found in large commercial kitchens.
The kitchen and preparation area is equipped with the latest kitchen and cooking equipment. These allows huge savings in hot water and other energy-intensive processes. It is also one of the first in Canada to use its state of the art waste-disposal vacuum system and automated, which allows the elimination of cross circulation of food and waste.