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Throughout 2017, we have been very excited to capture a groundbreaking project near Alkali Lake in the Cariboo Chilcotin area.

We have watched pre-fabricated walls go up and seen a variety of different stages of the building process, though it has not always been a straight forward project for our team. To planning content with numerous partners, the total distance travelled and the home’s remote location, the destruction of the wildfires this summer, there have been some challenging factors during this project.

With support from Natural Resources Canada, BC Hydro, and BC Housing, the Alkali Lake Supportive and Recovery Centre will be a stepping stone for the Esk’etemec First Nations community’s healing journey in addictions and rehabilitation. The opportunity here was to create a video to share the experiences and learnings from the field trial projects with a broader group of builders and industry members.

The Alkali Lake Supportive and Recovery Centre is one of the first net zero energy efficient and LEEP certified (Local Energy Efficiency Partnership) structures to be built on First Nations territory in British Columbia. It is a hope that this structure will be a cornerstone for future projects across Canada as home builders and policies strive to be completely net zero by 2030.

On Monday, December 18th, 2017, we attended the grand opening of this facility to witness the Esk’estemc First Nations come together with their community and dignitaries from across the province to bless and recognize this space.

A fun fact about this building’s construction include that it only took four months to build in an indoors facility with Zirnhelt Timber Frames Ltd. With an integrated design philosophy, Zirnhelt’s team overcame the challenge of building in northern climates as well as reducing waste, improving quality and reducing time spent onsite.


CHBA President Eric DenOuden was on hand at the opening to congratulate the team at Zirnhelt Timber Frames Ltd., a member of CHBA Northern British Columbia, for being the first in a northern climate and the first in a First Nation community to achieve this prestigious recognition under our program.


Overall, it was an honour to be present for this opening ceremony and witness such a positive change for the Esk’etemec First Nations community, to learn more about this facility, and witness a monumental change for our society’s future.

To view this video, please click HERE.