“Triptych” Wins 2023 Canadian Architect Award of Merit

Pioneering, Prefabricated Housing Prototype Takes Home a 2023 Canadian Architect Award of Merit

The Canadian Architect awards were established in 1967, and are held on an annual basis. Through panel review, these awards provide well-deserved, national recognition to upcoming architectural projects, with jurors who assess everything from the outward appearance and form of the structure, to the proposed building’s relevance in the broader context of its local environment and community. Consideration is also given to innovative concepts, processes, materials, and building systems used.

This year, “Triptych” – a bento-inspired housing solution conceptualized and designed by Leckie Studio Architecture + Design – was one of the recipients of the 2023 Award of Merit. The project re-imagines the idea of the notorious “Vancouver Special”, offering both a refreshing design (the prototype is modern, minimalist, and sleek) and a promising approach to increased (affordable) density in the city, offering prefabricated modules that could house multiple families within Vancouver’s standard 33 x 122 foot single-family home lot size. ASPECT provided structural engineering design consulting to Leckie Studio for this project, collaborating with the architectural team on the preliminary system development for this idea, as well as the preliminary design phase.

Below is a bit more information about “Triptych”, including the overarching goals of the project. Huge congratulations to Leckie Studio for this award recognition!


Renderings courtesy of: Leckie Studio Architecture + Design

Reimagining the future, one module at a time.

The genius behind Triptych lies in the prefabricated modular system the design leverages to easily switch between triplex, duplex, laneway, and single-family home layouts (with minimal renovations). This is made possible by rearranging and combining variations of 800 square foot modules within the standardized 2,400 square foot structure. If you’ve ever seen bento-box style lunchboxes, you can begin to imagine how this system might work. With a bento-box, you have various-sized food containers that all fit together neatly into one tidy box. With Triptych, we have pre-designed reconfigurable living spaces that can be constructed off-site, flat-packed, and then assembled on site with relative ease. With the right planning, prefabricated structures and systems like this can significantly reduce the overall construction timeline and labour budget, while also reducing construction noise and laydown space in the neighbourhood.

ASPECT provided the structural design for the proposed prototype, which is a 2,450 square foot, single-family dwelling intended for the Vancouver market. Presently, the extent of the prototype is a 25 x 49 foot, two-storey structure with a roof deck, a crawl space, a courtyard, and a single-car garage. The proposed structural system is light wood frame atop conventional concrete foundations, using a modified version of another prefabricated housing system called BOSS (Building Offsite Sustainable System), which ASPECT has prior experience with as well.

Truly special housing for Vancouver.

We’re proud to have contributed to the success of this project so far, supporting the talented designers at Leckie Studio, BCollective, and Evoke Buildings Engineering. We eagerly anticipate seeing this promising housing prototype become a reality – a standardized, easily replicable, cost-effective, quickly manufactured and logistically convenient home that is modular by design. Now that is a Vancouver Special we can all be proud of!


Full winners list from the 2023 Canadian Architect Awards of Excellence: https://www.canadianarchitect.com/the-winners-2023-canadian-architect-awards-of-excellence/

ASPECT regularly works with and advises on prefabricated / modular design solutions as well as single-family housing design solutions. Check out the Projects page to take a look at our wider portfolio.