RATIO news: Mark Hamilton Architect AIBC has joined Chris Pollard as principal and partner of RATIO Architecture, Interior Design & Planning Inc.
Let’s work together to keep our communities healthy — even as we recognize the challenges that lay ahead for all of us personally and in business. Click here for an update from RATIO.
A successful credit union branch strategy means meeting members’ needs today and in the future. As opposed to a single solution, a successful credit union branch strategy requires Distinctive Thinking, an integrated solution defined by the member, community and the brand. Read on for 7 considerations to deliver a successful credit union branch network strategy.
Now a reality, this credit union’s branch design concepts are meeting organizational and community engagement objectives. See how our design concepts have come to life.
Check out the Architecture and Design Film Festival in Vancouver November 7 – 10. We’re a proud sponsor!
RATIO’s new office entryway incorporates brand elements that are immediately recognizable to our team and to our guests. Dennis Boyle built upon our existing brand identity, creating a striking entry experience that is rooted in the experience of our office culture. He developed a customized visual system including spatial orientation graphics and a key brand wall which also serves as privacy foil for a large staff lounge.
Before location and branch design decisions are made take a step back and look at where you want to be in five or 10 years. Because the decisions you’re making now have a massive effect on what your credit union is able to do in the future.
The Kitsilano Coast Guard building, a recognizable landmark, on the North East corner of Kits Point and in the shadow of the Burrard Bridge, required a complete building envelope retrofit. RATIO’s design plan is a significant update to the building’s weather-shedding and energy performance that meet prescribed energy targets for the building.
A thorough and collaborative approach ensures the new Vancity Chinatown Community branch would serve the neighbourhood’s diverse and robust community now and in the years to come. As prime consultant, our RATIO team was responsible for the planning and design of this tenant improvement project. The interior design embraces natural light and circular shapes acknowledged in both Indigenous cultures and Feng Shui principals.
On February 16, 2019 we lost Mike Barnes, Architect AIBC, a beloved friend, respected colleague, senior advisor and RATIO partner.
It wasn’t organizational challenges that drove Aldergrove Credit Union (ACU) to embark on a new branch design; it was opportunity. As a new branch in a new building in a new community, an opportunity arose for RATIO to integrate corporate goals into the branch design.
Vancity has taken steps to remove barriers and improve accessibility for the hundreds of employees and members who enter their branches daily. Vancity branches in Burnaby Heights and Vancity Centre have received the Accessibility Certified Gold rating under the Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification program.
RATIO and We Care; a holiday tradition
The Kitsilano Coast Guard Station required an envelope upgrade to withstand a renewed lifecycle in a high-profile exposed marine setting. RATIO’s design plan will deliver a functional, robust and aesthetic upgrade required to meet the goals of the Canadian Coast Guard.
In case you missed it: Our expanded design team is having a terrifically busy year. We are a proudly diverse and talented group working collaboratively with our clients to create design solutions ranging from community infrastructure to workplace tenant improvements to the rehabilitation of heritage structures. Here is a quick look at some of the projects we’ve been working on.
A successful workspace tenant improvement will address the goals of the business, brand attributes, culture, the type of business, employee profiles and help drive creativity and innovation. A results-based design solution will ensure successful and lasting results.
RATIO principal, Chris Pollard was interviewed for Enterprise Magazine, published by the Canadian Credit Union Association for his thoughts on future-proofing credit union branch design. Credit Unions are adapting their branches to address usage shifts as a result of technology; now and for the future. Chris shares thoughts on scalability, member insights and community profiling.
We are pleased to introduce (and welcome) our newest RATIO team members.
Recently released, a global branch design report features 25 case studies from around the world including RATIO’s work for Island Savings. Published by a banking intelligence provider, Lafferty Group, the report is titled Digital Branch Design: Presence, Openness and Intimacy. Read on for a look at the published case study and more about the report.
Vancity’s new Maillardville branch reflects this credit union’s commitment to community and sustainability. As a LEED v4 registered Commercial Interior project, the space meets design criteria from healthy building materials to advanced energy metering and water conservation. Learn more about how RATIO and Vancity worked to create a unique, customer-friendly community credit union branch.
At We Care Vancouver, December 2017, the super-charged festive buzz was enhanced by a visit from Santa and happy enthusiasm from the kids.
How can employers create space that serves the diverse needs of worker demographics and culture while inspiring creative collaboration and productivity? Be clear on your tenant improvement objectives. Leverage the experience of a design partner who focuses on understanding and gathering insights first for better results-based design decisions.
Today, October 19 is International Credit Union day. This is a shout out to the credit unions in our communities for their ongoing service pledge to their members and communities. The RATIO team has been privileged to work with credit unions for over 50 years.
Wood WORKS! BC recently recognized municipalities around BC for their use of wood in community infrastructure projects. Included was the RATIO-designed Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre in Metro Vancouver.
Whether you call it ‘ future-proofing,’ ‘The Bionic Bank’ or ‘The Bank of Now’, they all refer to the strategic redefinition of the physical branch. It means ensuring they meet needs of changing populations, providing centres of advice for life’s milestone moments. People want face to face service for high-value transactions like small business loans, mortgages and life insurance.
Distinctive thinking leads to successful workspace design results. Tenant improvements can be challenging and disruptive for employers and their teams. Here are ten considerations to help ensure a successful workspace design project.
During July (and all year long) celebrate Vancouver’s heritage with 25th anniversary celebration activities curated by the Vancouver Heritage Foundation.
The challenge: how to plan a new workspace for ten years out? The result: a flexible, well-appointed office that feels comfortable to clients, with functional and attractive workspace for staff and partners.
The RATIO-designed Launchpad space in the Brighouse branch of the Richmond Public Library provides interactive community learning opportunities and features a lecture space, a dedicated classroom, a flexible learning space, and creation stations.
The American Society of Interior Designers’ (ASID) ICON magazine explored the issue of designing for confidentiality in this era of open-plan spaces through dialogue with 4 designers including RATIO partner, Christopher Pollard.
Our view on heritage restoration and adaptive reuse begins with respect for the site’s heritage, through thoughtful adaptive reuse of the existing structure. RATIO’s work in conserving some of British Columbia’s heritage sites has resulted in award-winning and nationally recognized sites that connect design excellence, adaptive reuse and historic preservation.
The new, Ratio-designed, Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre in Maple Ridge, BC will offer education and grassroots engagement on the critical importance of watershed stewardship and environmental sustainability. The setting is campus-like where connectivity and circulation of the spaces are outdoors. The building footprint and impacts of site development in this delicate watershed are minimized.
For us, the Branch of the Future is more than just a change in decor. It is our understanding of the business, how to serve customers better, how to integrate technology in-branch in a customer-friendly way, and how to create high-value transactions that allows us to create a path to the Branch of the Future.
The RATIO-designed Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre is in final stages of construction. The opening celebration is scheduled for April 30, 2017.
Your brand, goals of the business, the type of business, employee profiles, and definition of success all feed into the design of a successful workspace or office. So, how can employers create space that serves the diverse needs of worker demographics and culture while inspiring creative collaboration and productivity? It starts with insights and planning. Read more about RATIO’s approach for result-based workplace design.
RATIO works with municipalities, library boards and staff to create library design plans that meet the needs of all stakeholders. Projects may range from large-scale to small; new space design, changing use solutions to interior design refresh. See a first look at the updated reading lounge at the Bob Prittie Metrotown Branch library in the City of Burnaby.
Retail banking design decisions must meet the challenges financial service organizations face to align new or revamped branches with brand, values, service and trust. See our list of 18 design trends for financial service retail branches……
Design decisions in new or revamped financial institution retail branches must do two things well: 1) Clearly communicate the organization’s overarching ethos and services and 2) build trust by understanding and reflecting local values. We’ll illustrate with 3 projects, show how retail banking branch design trends support service delivery and share the design trends we are seeing.
We Care Vancouver, organized by Workplace Resource / Herman Miller provides a gift making experience for over 300 children. This year RATIO participated with teams from SSDG, Kasian, Omicron, Perkins+Will, Smart Design Group, Stantec, ZAS, and BYU.
The unique design of the Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre project is taking shape and seen in new construction photos. Completion is expected towards the end of this year.
RATIO is working on an exciting project with Richmond Public Library to make permanent an innovative service area they’ve been piloting since 2014 called the Launchpad.
Check out the progress of the Ratio designed Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre. New construction photos!
New direction, new images of community-focused credit union branch for Community Savings. Our concept for a 1400 sq ft community credit union branch delivers intimate, member-dedicated spaces allowing for more personal interactions in comfort and privacy.
Identifying and preserving the heritage sites in our communities acknowledges the important link to the past and our shared heritage. Heritage BC recently announced a new Japanese-Canadian Historic Places Recognition Project to be completed on behalf of the British Columbia Ministry of International Trade and the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations. They are seeking nominations of historic places of place with heritage values believed to be significant or important to the Japanese-Canadian community in BC.
Four opportunities to connect with our heritage, up close and personal, through walking tours around Metro Vancouver organized by Heritage Vancouver, AIBC, The Elders Council for Parks and North Vancouver Museum & Archives.
The project planning and design work for the new Surrey courthouse expansion and renovation were done in collaboration between RATIO and NORR Architects & Planners. RATIO is BC’s foremost courthouse architecture firm and design expert with dozens of courthouse and court-related facilities completed over the years.
An award-winning purpose built wood building, designed by RATIO for Salmon Arm Savings & Credit Union’s flagship branch.
Over the years RATIO has worked on transforming a West Vancouver heritage building, Gertrude Lawson House, to the multi-use West Vancouver Museum & Archives building.
Updates to our Kanaka Creek Watershed Stewardship Centre project: updated drawings, construction starting soon.
Empowering members to reach financial goals drives RATIO’s design decisions for updated Community Savings branches. Intimate, member-dedicated spaces allows for more personal interactions in comfort and privacy. The impetus for this new space was to create a vibrant and supportive environment in keeping with Community Savings’ ethos of empowering people in the working community with advice that is in their best interest.
RATIO’s credit union clients, Island Savings and Salmon Arm Savings & Credit Union were 2 of the featured banking branch design concepts in the Financial Brand’s international photo showcase.
As a result of the evidence building around workplace productivity, healthier workplace environments, changing work styles and demographics; and the increasing the cost of real estate, workplace design must take a longer view. Workplace change is a profound adjustment for employees. Companies need a designer who is versed in change management strategies. RATIO’s Distinctive Thinking takes a look at how to achieve the long view with a new workspace design.
New spending on infrastructure projects for British Columbia means funding for 57 capital and capacity building projects in communities around the province.
Recently, the Pacific Coast University for Workplace Health Sciences met a milestone with the instalment of Founding Chancellor, the Honourable Wayne G Wouters. RATIO’s history with the university started when chosen by PCU-WHS to develop a site master plan and to design the first building based on a mutual devotion to this outstanding cause. Our work was completed in 2011.
The only credit union on the 2015 LEED Platinum certification list, Vancity’s Mount Tolmie Community Branch delivers a high-performance green interior that is a healthy, productive place to work with a reduced environmental footprint. RATIO acted as the prime consultant and was responsible for the planning and design of the of the 5000 square foot Mount Tolmie Community Branch space that resulted in a LEED Platinum for Commercial Interiors rating.
RATIO’s architectural solution for the Craigflower Pump Station in BC’s beautiful Capital Region District. A necessary community infrastructure project that integrates into the neighbourhood and parkland setting.
Our name is grounded in the importance of relations and relationships in our work. Between a building and its environment. Between citizens and structures. Between our firm and our clients. How do we live and breathe the RATIO story? On every project we bring distinctive thinking, rigorous creativity, and a progressive approach. Here are four stories from 2015 we are proud to share.
Congratulations to Vancity for their first LEED Platinum for Commercial Interiors for their Mount Tolmie community branch in Victoria on Vancouver Island. RATIO acted as the prime consultant and was responsible for the planning and design of the of the 5000 square foot space. This project was another opportunity for Vancity to build a healthy, productive, community-minded space with a reduced environmental footprint. We are our proud that our work on Vancity’s Mount Tolmie branch resulted in a LEED Platinum for Commercial Interiors rating.
The new Aldergrove Port of Entry in Langley, BC is nearing completion. Full operation is expected towards the end of 2015. RATIO is proud to have been the Design Architect and Coordinating Registered Professional for the project and many other ports across British Columbia.
This year, BC Rivers Day coincides with World Rivers Day on Sunday September 27, 2015. BC Rivers Day is a chance to celebrate the province’s rivers, and to reflect on what we stand to lose if we fail to take better care of them. RATIO’s work has taken them all over the province working on projects related to our most precious resource, BC’s rivers and waterways.
There is disruption occurring in banking, specifically around retail branch design and technology. The branch of the future is both high tech and high touch. A recent story in the Globe and Mail gives great examples of what is happening in the Big 5 banks that have become more technologically savvy with more services online, but still delivering high value personal services in branch. Branches that now offer a different personality than one may have found in recent past. Think open, transparent and welcoming with fewer counters and smaller spaces. Here in BC, where credit unions are a significant part of the financial services landscape and our communities, RATIO has seen an innovative and entrepreneurial spirit evident in branch design and service delivery.
CEO’s who intend to optimize a key asset, their workforce, will want to challenge them to be more productive, creative and innovative. To achieve this, workspace design must appeal to three broad categories of well-being; the physical, cognitive and emotional.
The RATIO designed Brawn Water Pump Station in Langley, BC is a practical and beautiful example of how infrastructure can co-exist in our communities. See more about our Brawn project here.
How can employers create space that serves the diverse needs of worker demographics and culture while inspiring creative collaboration and productivity? A workspace design plan should offer solutions with clear intent and outcomes.It should address the challenges of the modern office with consideration for the tension between public and private workspace. This means creating space for collaboration while allowing for focused, task-oriented space. Consider how to control visual distraction and accommodate for a diverse workforce including introverts and extraverts. And, your workspace plan should reflect and reinforce your brand values.
Our process is creative, collaborative and innovative, but backed by pragmatic business reason. The hand sketch is a tool. It is a step between the insights gathered in the pre-design phase and a schematic design. It is a visual synthesis of the data and project goals.
Team RATIO participated in the woman’s charity obstacle course event, Woman2Warrior, to raise funds for Easter Seals Camps of BC.
A forward-thinking credit union branch design helps First West achieve enviable financial performance. In June of 2014, the first of the Ratio designed Envision Financial branch concept opened in Chilliwack , BC at Garrison Crossing. With a visionary operational model, First West Credit Union’s investment into a future-focused branch network for their Envision Financial brand paid off with more new members and positive revenue results.
One of Canada’s National Historic Sites, the Triple Island Lighthouse, is to receive a complete heritage rehabilitation. RATIO has been commissioned to lead the design including a seismic upgrade and overall building refurbishment. Mike Mammone, RATIO principal, recently made a site visit and took these stunning shots from the helicopter and ground. RATIO’s work on this project is already underway with construction commencing this spring.
The conservation of heritage buildings results in economic, cultural and environmental benefits to communities. Municipalities see the impact of heritage conservation through civic pride and a sense of place with architectural diversity. Economic benefits are felt through tourism, enhanced property values and employment. The investment in heritage conservation — whether through preservation, rehabilitation, restoration or adaptive reuse — aligns with municipal sustainability strategies that will drive economic, cultural and environmental benefits to its residents. RATIO has worked on a number of heritage projects that have turned into award-winning, much loved public facilities.
The new Valley First Vernon Branch is the first of a network-wide design solution by RATIO featuring open, engaging branch spaces that promote staff interaction and personal service. Although part of the 40-plus First West Credit Union family, Valley First has a strong local brand and is a vital member of the Okanagan, Similkameen and Thompson communities. Branch members have a powerful connection to staff and the strength of this relationship is the framework for the branch network design. Our design solution features open, engaging branch spaces that promote staff interaction and personal service. The design platform also introduces subtle aesthetic cues through materials and finishes to acknowledge regional geographic and local demographic differences.
Recently, Business in Vancouver published a story related to the changes that have occurred with BC’s Credit Unions. The dichotomy of growing membership but fewer credit union brands is interesting and presents a challenge. The trend towards mergers in the sector means there are now fewer than 40 credit union brands compared to 1996 when there were around 100. Credit Unions are about community, people and relationships. So, how do Credit Unions keep brand consistency across credit union branches and communities? How does Credit Union branch design support those brand characteristics that set it apart from competitors and deliver on the promise of community support?
The design solution for the new recreation centre was to update the original uninspiring facility with a new, more prominent frontage that reflects the importance of this civic structure in the community.
Pitt Meadows residents can now enjoy a modern, welcoming recreation centre. The modernized and expanded fitness centre is bright with natural light, welcoming and triple the size.
This important civic multi-use facility in Pitt Meadows also houses the community policing office.
Click here for more photos of the project.
In 1954, our firm was established as Toby & Russell Architects. After six decades of working with our clients to create outstanding spaces and build their brands, we realized it was time to evolve our own brand. As we step forward into the next 60 years, we’re excited to share a new identity that articulates the firm we are today and will become in the future.
A ratio expresses proportion, balance and relationship. Our new name is grounded in the importance of relations and relationships in our work. Between a building and its environment. Between citizens and structures. Between our firm and our clients.