It’s not every day that the international architecture community decides to check out what’s happening in the Skeena region. But this week the new hockey arena in Hazleton made an appearance on ArchDaily, which calls itself “the world’s most visited architecture site”.
The article includes more than 20 stunning pictures of the Upper Skeena Recreation Centre which was built using B.C. wood products and designed by Hemsworth Architecture. “This building is the result of efforts of all the local people,” said Gordon Sebastian, Hereditary Chief, Gitxsan Nation.
Many local contractors and workers helped build the new arena, which has “an NHL-sized ice rink with seating for 500 spectators, a large gymnasium and fitness centre, changing rooms, and a community room with views into both the rink and gym for social events and gatherings.”
The article in ArchDaily calls the new building “a source of collective pride, reflecting the values and expertise of the community it serves.” That’s a pretty big endorsement, considering that more than 13 million architects visit the website every month.
The use of wood instead of standard steel is part of what makes the arena so unique.
“Construction took place over a rugged winter,” reads another write-up of the project from last year. “Since framers can easily work with wood, even in extreme cold temperatures, they avoided some of the challenges they would have faced if they had used steel, since it is difficult to weld in below-freezing temperatures.”
It goes on, “the beautiful wood structure gives the community a point of pride that will last for decades.”