Delbrook Community Recreation Centre

Delbrook Community Recreation Centre HDR

Delbrook Community Recreation Centre

A Recreation Facility Focused on Integration, Accessibility and Sustainability

Resonating with the values and experiences of the highly active community of North Vancouver, the Delbrook Community Recreation Centre forms an intuitive connection between indoor and outdoor activity — supporting health and well-being through physical activity, involvement in the arts, and community interaction.

The centre is designed with maximum transparency to create healthy spaces with daylight and views to nature. The program offers a diverse selection of activities, designed with accessibility in mind, to bring people of varied backgrounds and generations together. Particular attention was paid to designing accessible pools and changing rooms as well as wayfinding features to create a welcoming community space meant for all, regardless of abilities.

The design concept was inspired by the area’s evolution from historic logging roots to modern city. The visual forms mimicking stacked lumber take advantage of the steep sloping site that is sensitive to its surroundings while boldly proclaiming itself as a welcoming public amenity. 

Thoughtfully integrated into challenging site conditions, the design respects the natural landscape and adjacent uses. Mosquito Creek, a salmon-bearing stream, flows to the west of the site creating a highly valued natural amenity. In the entry plaza, an art installation provides an interactive expression of stormwater management and water recycling.

The main public spaces in Delbrook Community Recreation Centre were designed to showcase the wood structure and maximize its visual impact. Double-height Douglas fir glulam columns and beams frame the large public corridor, which is flanked by windows that allow daylight in. The glulam beams support Douglas fir glulam timber planks used for the long spans. The wood planks sit on top of the beams and columns, where they can be seen when visitors first arrive.

Sustainability was a key goal of the project and the use of regional wood materials throughout the building factored into the design team’s material choice; it also met the community’s budget, schedule and design expectations. An energy model created during design predicts the facility will save approximately 39% on energy costs. Water use was also reduced by 32.5% and is carefully monitored throughout the pool systems to ensure no waste occurs.

Community Recreation Features Include:

  • A 25-meter, six-lane pool
  • A leisure pool
  • Racket sport courts
  • Fitness center
  • Gymnasium
  • North Vancouver Recreation Commission offices
  • Artificial turf field
Delbrook Community Recreation Centre HDR
District of North Vancouver

North Vancouver, BC

84,500 sf (7,850 m²)


Bill Woycik Outstanding Facility Award, Winner (2018)
Recreation Facilities Association of British Columbia
Wood Design Awards, Winner (2017)
Community Recognition Award
Wood WORKS! British Columbia
Award of Excellence, Winner (2017)
Advisory Design Panel, District of North Vancouver