UR+ BC_Built Environment 2018: Program & Schedule

Thank you for contributing to this event designed to: promote a shared understanding of natural hazard risks in BC’s built environment, and develop and further actionable strategies to reduce those risks and build resilience.

Monday, April 16th

12:00 PM Onsite Registration and light refreshments 
1:00 PM Opening Plenary
3:00 PM Ignite Talks
4:00 PM Welcome Reception
6:00 PM Retrofit Dinner and Drinks (Self-Guided Tour)

Tuesday, April 17th

8:00 AM Onsite Registration
9:00 AM Welcome from Mayor Lisa Helps
9:15 AM Opening Plenary 
10:00 AM Refreshment Break
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM Concurrent Sessions Part I
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM Buffet Lunch in Crystal Ballroom 
1:30 PM - 3:00 PM Concurrent Sessions Part II
3:00 PM - 3:30 PM Refreshment Break
3:30 - 4:15 PM Knowledge Exchange 
4:15 PM - 5:00 PM Closing Plenary
5:00 PM - 8:00 PM Social & Networking Evening 


12:00 PM - Onsite Registration

1:00 PM - Welcome dance from the Le La La Dancers and a welcome from Councillor Norman Gary Sam, Songhees Nation 

Kickoff Plenary: Understanding Natural Hazard Risks and Risk Reduction Potential in BC's Built Environment

Learn from some of the most recent natural hazard risk modelling work in BC, as well as recent lived experiences and how this translates into reducing risk and building resilience in the province’s built environment.

Hosted by: Susanna Haas Lyons, with

  • Murray Journeay (Geological Survey of Canada, Global Earthquake Model) Key Insights from the Recent BC Earthquake Risk Analysis and Deploying the Global Earthquake Model for Risk Reduction Planning 
  • Tamsin Lyle (Ebbwater Consulting, Fraser Basin Council) State of Play in Flood Mapping, Modelling and Mitigation in BC – How can Thoughtful Flood Management Help Reduce Risk and Build Resilience in an Era of Non-stationarity?
  • Madeline Maley (Executive Director, BC Wildfire Service) Learning from this Past Year's Unprecedented Wildfire Season to Inform a More Resilient Built Environment in BC 
  • Jessica Shoubridge (EERI-BC, Fraser Basin Council, Thrive Consulting) Connecting Challenges with Solutions: Planning and Building for a More Resilient BC

3:00 PM - Slam poetry by Jonny Macrae and Ignite Speakers from each of the six concurrent sessions will ‘pitch’ their sessions.

4:00 PM - Welcome Reception

6:00 PM Retrofit Dinner and Drinks - Self Guided Tour - Quench your thirst and satiate your hunger at one of the many buildings that have seen seismic retrofit in the Victoria downtown core. Connect with fellow symposium attendees @ The Empress, Rialto, and Strathcona. (See your map for more venue details.) 


8:00 AM - Onsite Registration

9:00 AM - Welcoming remarks from Mayor Lisa Helps and host Susanna Haas Lyons 

9:15 AM - Opening Plenary: Fast-tracking Resilience from Idea to Reality via Risk-Based Finance and Incentives 

The financing available for construction projects will become increasingly based on exposure to natural and climate-related hazards. How will the increasing trend towards public hazard/climate risk information and risk-affected credit ratings affect your bottom line, as a government, builder, developer, or homeowner? How do we best translate risk information to actionable strategies and finance that supports implementation of resilience-building solutions? And how can effective insurance mechanisms help reduce risk, transfer it appropriately and ensure speedy recovery? This expert panel will explore the ins and outs of finance and insurance for natural hazard and climate risk management in the region, including: insurance of public and private assets, disaster financial assistance, innovations and creative solutions within the insurance sector (e.g. parametric insurance) and other risk reduction incentives and finance options for resilience (e.g. active resilience bonds, low interest retrofitting loans).

Moderated by: Katie McPherson, City of Vancouver

  • Aaron Sutherland (Insurance Bureau of Canada)
  • Tom Barnes (Municipal Insurance Association of BC) 
  • Glenn McGillivray (Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction) 

10:00 AM - Refreshment Break

10:30 AM - 12 PM - Concurrent Sessions (Morning)

T1. Reducing Risk and Building Resilience in BC's Existing Building Stock is Big Business: Exploring Opportunities for Synergistic Retrofits 

Room: Saanich 
Convened by:
Amanda Broad, Climate Action Secretariat & Tanya Patterson, City of Victoria 

  • Cher King-Scobie (Fraser Basin Council) 
  • Jonathan Tinney & Catherine Umland (City of Victoria and Civic Heritage Trust)
  • Bruce Johnson (Victoria Civic Heritage Trust) 
  • Greg Baynton (Victoria Civic Heritage Trust)
  • Jarrett Hutchison (Building Safety Standards Branch) 
  • Carlos Molina Hutt (UBC) 
  • Graham Taylor (TGB Seismic)
  • Robert Lepage (RDH Building Science)

There are many pressures on the existing building stock. Existing buildings can represent a pool of risk that can be trickier to tackle in terms of policy/action than new construction (depending on who you ask!). How can we deploy the best approaches for seismic retrofits that are in line with other objectives for existing buildings, such as deep energy retrofits, flood resilient design and enhancing overall durability? This session will explore the various tools in the tool box to build resilience in the existing building stock. Examples discussed will include strategic planning and coordination, public education, research, development and demonstration, industry capacity building (including tactics), voluntary leadership (by public and private sectors), financing, subsidies and regulation. How can collaboration and innovation help advance the agenda for increasing low-carbon resilience in the existing building stock?


T2. Archipelagos Not Islands: Linking Resilience of Buildings with Infrastructure Lifelines 

Room: Oak Bay 
Convened by:
Jamie McIntyre, Mott MacDonald/EERI-BC & David Bristow, University of Victoria 

We’ve all seen that picture of the Goldman Sachs building in NY post-Sandy right?!  The lights are on but nobody’s at home (work)! It’s an iconic image that demonstrates that we could create the most resilient building stock in the world but that this will not enhance overall resilience if we don’t also consider the infrastructure that connects to these buildings and helps people move from place to place. Modern economies are heavily reliant on regional, bioregional and even global movement of people and goods. So how can we apply concepts of performance-based design more broadly across our lifeline infrastructure? How can we do better at thinking from a systems perspective instead of focusing on individual assets in isolation? And how does modelling of interdependencies and cascading impacts support risk reduction, effective response/recovery and building back better?


T3. Building Back Better: The Construction Sector as Essential Responders 

Room: Esquimalt
Convened by:
Chris Atchison, BC Construction Association  

  • Scot Bone (CEO, Northern Regional Construction Association) 
  • Peter Mitchell (Director Professional Practice, Standards and Development, Engineers and Geoscientists BC) 
  • Roberta Sheng-Taylor (Manager, Industry & Labour Services – Construction, WorkSafe BC)
  • Robert Turner (Assistant Deputy Minister, Emergency Management BC) 
  • Ross McLean (Regional Manager, Houle Electric)
  • Bishnu Pandey (BCIT Instructor, Civil Engineering School of Construction and the Environment)

The construction sector employs over 225,000 skilled tradespeople across BC who have potential to provide vital expanded response and recovery expertise to supplement the capacity of structural engineers and other building assessors in the aftermath of a catastrophic event.  How could contractors and tradespeople trained in early Prevention Preparedness and Response and Prioritized Post-Earthquake Response assist first responders in assessing building safety? How would this training be provided? How can partnerships between industries and professional networks enhance the speed and reliability of response that is needed to establish safe and operational public transportation and infrastructure services?  What are the opportunities for networking BC’s 23,569 construction businesses as “essential responders” and encouraging these workers and businesses to be fully prepared for emergency events?  This session explores how we can work together to ensure that engineers, contractors, and suppliers are networked with first responders and local and provincial government emergency management teams. Through collaboration, how we can redefine the delivery process for post-event to meet resilience objectives and build back better?

12:00 PM - 1:30 PM: Lunch Break

1:30 PM - 3:00 PM - Concurrent Sessions (Afternoon)

T4. Resilient New Buildings: Low Carbon, Performance-Based and Multi-Hazard Designs in a Changing Climate 

Room: Esquimalt 
Convened by:
Tuna Onur, NBCC Code Committee for Resilience   

  • Tom Plumb (President and CEO of Kinetic Construction) 
  • John Sherstobitoff (Ausenco & NBCC Code Committee for Resilience)
  • Jamie Gray-Donald (Quad Real Properties)
  • Lisa Stevens (COO, BC Construction Association)  
  • Angie Woo (Fraser Health) 
  • Deanna Fourt (Island Health)

We have the technical know-how to increase the performance of buildings to withstand both flood and earthquake events, so how do we translate this into increased uptake for new buildings in BC? We know that increasing the resilience of buildings has potential to reduce social disruption, dollar losses, insurance claims and economic downtime- so what is holding us back from building better? What are the most effective ways to up the resilience factor in different development scenarios (e.g. new development, redevelopments, urban vs. suburban contexts)? Do we use building codes or other forms of regulation? Branded resilience ratings programs, or other incentivization mechanisms? How do we work towards a shared understanding of building-level resilience given the current disparate fields of flood and earthquake-resilient design? And how can we learn from the ‘green building’ and energy efficiency efforts that have ramped up over the past decade and apply that for multi-hazard design? This expert group of conveners will explore these issues, bringing their extensive expertise to bear on the cross-disciplinary discussion.


T5. Let’s Not Make Tsunami BC's Blind Spot

Sponsored by: LNG Canada

Room: Oak Bay
Convened by: Marit Heideman & Malaika Ulmi, Geological Survey of Canada/Natural Resources Canada 

  • Tania L. Insua (Ocean Networks Canada)
  • Lucinda Leonard (University of Victoria, National-scale Tsunami Hazard Assessment for Canada)
  • Enda Murphy (National Research Council, Marine Infrastructure Research Engineer)
  • Gwyn Lintern (Geological Survey of Canada, Marine Geohazard Researcher)
  • David Mason (HSSE Director, LNG Canada)
  • Trent Bossence (District of Kitimat)

Recent earthquakes and tsunami warnings in BC are a reminder of this element of the seismic hazard as a significant threat on our coast - so how prepared for a tsunami are we really?  In Japan, despite advanced science/ modelling/engineering- they were caught off guard. Can we avoid this fate in BC through thoughtful risk modelling, advanced early warning systems, strategic planning for risk reduction and resilient design approaches? And what is the trick to requiring, incentivizing or otherwise encouraging tsunami resilient design in high hazard areas? Are there synergies between modelling and design for coastal storm surge that we can take advantage of? How is a warming atmosphere and ocean impacting our storm surge and tsunami hazards?

How do we move toward consistent and comprehensive structural measures to protect against tsunamis? In the US, tsunami provisions have been legislated for inclusion in future building codes. What can we learn from the experience of the US? What are some unique challenges for Canada and BC? What innovative ideas have been applied in protecting structures from tsunamis? What are next steps for Canada?


T6. Geographies of Opportunity: Investing in Disaster Risk Reduction  

Room: Saanich Room
Convened by:
Murray Journeay, GSC/NRCan 

  • Katie McPherson (City of Vancouver- Chief Resilience Officer) 
  • Micah Hilt (City of Vancouver- Seismic Planner) 
  • Sahar Safaie (Sage on Earth Consulting, General Editor and Facilitator of Implementing Sendai Guidelines) 
  • Anirudh Rao (Global Earthquake Model- GEM- Foundation)

Individuals, businesses and government leaders are increasingly receptive to the principles of disaster risk reduction but unlikely to take actions in advance of a disaster to build resilience without a clearly defined value proposition. The Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR) highlights the role of science and technology frameworks in supporting investment decisions at local/regional scales where there is capacity and agency to implement policy recommendations. Common practice has been to use quantitative risk assessment methods to measure probable impacts and consequences of disaster events in the hope that increased understanding of cause-effect relationships will motivate investment in mitigation and/or adaptation measures that are known to increase longer-term prospects for resilience and sustainability. The problem with this approach is that most assessment frameworks measure only static impacts and consequences for individual assets rather than dynamic conditions of risk within the broader system. They are also limited in their capacity to make evident opportunities for risk reduction (strategies) and/or context-specific incentives (rationale) for proactive investments in mitigation, adaptation and sustainable development measures that are relevant to individuals, businesses and institutions. Incentives include both a positive financial return on DRR investments (RoI), and the co-benefits of these investments in terms of broader public policy goals (social equity and resilience).  

Moreover, individuals, businesses and institutions responsible for making DRR investment decisions are not always directly engaged in the process of analyzing risk or evaluating risk reduction strategies that are relevant to their needs and requirements. As a result, messages communicated using conventional science-based risk assessments are often perceived as a liability and a constraint to growth and development; rather than as incentives for proactive DRR investments. This session will explore what it takes to motivate proactive investments in seismic retrofit and disaster resilience strategies at different levels of decision-making.  Join us to critique some innovative new approaches to exploring risk and risk reduction opportunities at the neighbourhood scale.

3:00 PM - 3:30 PM - Refreshment Break

3:30 PM - 4:15 PM - Knowledge Exchange: Overview of insights and actionable strategies gained from the concurrent sessions for reducing risk in BC's built environment. Moderated by Susanna Has Lyons. 

4:15 PM - 5:00 PM - Closing Plenary: A Regional Resilience Hub? Using Climate Projections, Big Data and Dynamic Risk Models to Inform and Enhance our Risk Reduction Planning and Actions, Early Warning Systems and Response and Recovery Efforts

Having a comprehensive resilience strategy for the province presents business opportunities that integrate energy retrofits, climate adaptation (including adapting to sea level rise, flooding and fire hazards), and seismic mitigation policy. What are the steps needed to put such a strategy for our built environment in motion? And, what kinds of collaborations or non-traditional partnerships are needed from the four orders of government, academia and the private sector? 

Moderated by: Jessica Shoubridge
Kate Moran (Ocean Networks Canada)  
Murray Journeay (Geological Survey of Canada, Global Earthquake Model)  
Becky Denlinger (Emergency Management BC)
Chris Atchison (BC Construction Association) 
Andrew Pape-Salmon (Building Safety Standards Branch)
Trevor Murdock (Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium) 

5:00 PM - 8:00 PM - Social & Networking Evening: League of Resilient Adapters @ Sticky Wicket