It was recently announced that Dalhousie alumnus Alastair Bird (BEDS’15, MArch’17) won the 2017 Canadian Architect Award of Excellence for the top Graduate Architectural thesis in Canada and was featured in the December issue of Canadian Architect Magazine.


On November 29, the 50th annual Canadian Architect Awards were hosted alongside Canadian Interiors‘ 20th annual Best of Canada Awards. Recognizing the country’s top designers, the Canadian Architect Awards celebrated seven outstanding projects — and their architects!

This year’s ‘Student Winner’ was Dalhousie University’s Alastair Bird, whose Electric Space conceptualizes a deft repurposing of a decommissioned hydro facility in British Columbia.

Electric space is a multi-phase project that imagines the adaptive reuse of a decommissioned 1903 waterfront hydroelectric facility into a visitors centre, research facility, bathhouse, and viewing platform, offering a first-hand reconnection both to our industrial past and the natural environment. This project proposes an engaging way forward for our increasing inventory of abandoned infrastructure. It undertakes a thoughtful reading of the specific buildings and site while imagining new programs that reinvigorate their relevance to modern life. The treatment of historical elements and their relationship with new interventions explores valuable questions about how new and old can co-exist against the backdrop of Vancouver’s ongoing struggle to preserve its building heritage.

Alastair has a passion for environmental stewardship and regionally-based design solutions that celebrate climate and landscape. Alastair graduated with his Master of Architecture from Dalhousie University in 2017, receiving numerous academic awards including the Henry Adams Medal. Alastair currently works with MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Read the Magazine Feature in Canadian Architect.