top of page

Latest News

Schematic Design Brief

Project Type:

A community food lodge serving as a community hub with cultivation, production, storing, processing, distribution, cooking and dining facilities. This project will serve multiple stakeholders and be designed for flexibility of use and adaptability of design. Thus, the foodbank will be in the food lodge , community cooking workshops will be at the food lodge, food distribution will be at the food lodge,  canning workshops, fish and game processing facilities, community seedbank/ seed exchange, woodland polyculture harvest processing, etc....all at the food lodge.


The Types of Spaces Included in the Building Type:

woodland polyculture*, community garden, greenhouse, potting shed, outdoor food processing, indoor food processing, community food bank, meal prep 300+ student lunches, dining hall, office space (x2), washrooms, laundry facilities, 7'x8' sponsorship wall, clothing swap (?), food prep, food storage, food harvesting, seed planting, seed bank, potting, display, dining, public gathering.

*aka forest garden


Space Requirements (Person or Unit) for Those Spaces:

Foodbank space requirements are based upon interviews with current stakeholders, as well as site inspections of current location. Opportunities may be available to gain some efficiencies in usable square footage for the foodbank with overlapping occupancies.

The foodbank currently occupies +/- 900 sq. ft. gross floor area at its current location. With 2 full-time staff plus volunteers.

A standard minimum formula for a full-service dining establishment is 5 square feet of kitchen space per restaurant seat, and an average of approx. 15sq. ft. per patron of dining space. Another standard split is 60% dining, 30% kitchen, 10% food storage.  A 50-seat restaurant, for example, calls for 750 sq. ft. of dining space, and a 250-300 square-foot kitchen, and 50-100 square feet of storage. Another way of presenting this is the following:

  • 50 seats

  • 60% Dining Area = 750 sq. ft. (25'x30')

  • 30% Kitchen = 300 sq. ft. (15'x20')

  • 10% Food Storage = 75-100 sq. ft. (7.5'x10'-10'x10') = Approx. 1125-1225sq.ft.[1]


Building classification within the context of the building code, sets a threshold at 30-person occupancy, beyond which considerations need to be made for Assembly occupancies (per. Major occupancy classification(s)). We intend to move forward with design based on 30-person occupancy to maintain building classification as Mercantile occupancy (30 seats or less) for the dining portion of the building. This will require a continued analysis of the square footage allotments, during Phase 2 of design (Schematics).


Construction Typology: Natural Materials:

Earliest pre-design meetings focused on natural building materials. Materials sourced locally, and processed minimally would be given priority consideration. Beyond the primary function of the material use in the enclosure system are several parallel and equally significant characteristics.


Materials for consideration include (but are not limited to):

stone / gravel / sand / clay / wood / straw / phragmite


The gathering, harvesting, conversion and processing of these materials happens locally, and the nature of this work requires many people to be immediately employed in these positions. This has the effect of stimulating the local economy, as funds that would otherwise be spent purchasing proprietary, processed materials is spent directly on local labour. Harvesting timber, skidding, de-limbing, de-barking, milling, transporting, are just a few jobs created in the processing of wood alone.

An emphasis on utilizing forest thinnings as construction material creates opportunities for harmonizing forest management with construction activities, providing a “feedback loop” for the sustainable management and monitoring of forest resources and building practice.

Dry-laid stone masonry, is already a local skill which would be an absolutely appropriate addition to the pallette of materials for this build, further engaging the local workforce.

Many components of the build (such as wattle fence and barrier work) can be fabricated in safe-areas onsite and performed by persons who might otherwise be excluded from conventional jobsites (women, children, elders, and those with physical challenges in particular).

Cost externalizing is a socioeconomic term describing how a business maximizes its profits by off-loading indirect costs and forcing negative effects to a third party. An externalized cost is known to economists as a negative. The utilization of these materials allows for “cost internalization” - which is to say that indirect costs become local opportunities which can be monitored internally for sustainability.



The industrialization of the processing of commercial, proprietary building materials is responsible for 40% of the global consumption of raw materials. Further, 20-30% of North American landfill is taken up by construction debris, and 20% of the world’s energy is used by the construction industry.

Localizing the use of renewable materials has a direct and immediate impact reducing the intake at the landfill.

Localizing the use of renewable materials supports the stewardship of these resources by reinforcing a direct relationship between the resource and the end use. This, in turn, supports the traditional relationship to the land. This has a direct and immediate impact reducing the intake at the landfill.


Occupant Health:

Many of the possible combinations of natural materials available to use for enclosure systems in this climate are air tight, vapour open wall systems. The moisture storage capability of these materials, generally enables these assemblies to passively regulate indoor relative humidities. This leads to lower surface relative humidifies, effectively eliminating the possibility of mold and mildew, as well as optimized ambient relative humidity. It has been well researched that low relative humidities in buildings (often a result of forced air heating systems combined with mechanical ventilation systems) dries out the mucous membranes and leaves occupants susceptible to viral infection. In this climate, that generally means cold and flu, however, studies have been done by the U.S. military which have observed lower rates of Ebola in hospitals which were constructed of earthen materials.

Functional Design Factors:


  • optimal solar orientation for passive and active solar gain, reducing heating and energy costs

  • optimal solar orientation for greenhouse

  • ease of access and proximity to other anchor facilities within the community

  • sandy soil, and potential high-water table suggest shallow foundation techniques. The north west axis and tapered lot, combined with above observations implies building "up" rather than "out or down" to maximise useable square footage.

  • existing trail system observed. The appearance of continuous active use suggests the maintenance and encouragement of the continued use of these informal networks. These trails could be vital links to forest garden medicinal and nutritional supplementation, as well as hunting/game harvesting. The building is designed to support these activities by providing facilities for the cultivation, production, processing, storage and distribution of nutritional and medicinal resources from a wide variety of inputs.

  • given the central location, and community-oriented function of the building, space will be designed for maximum flexibility of use. This allows the building to adapt to community needs, as well as serving as a community muster point in the event of extreme weather events or other emergencies.

  • setting the facility back far enough from Mason Drive, to allow for 10 parking spaces as well as accommodation of five-ton delivery trucks will require careful examination of set-backs from current property lines.

  • in absence of specific zoning bylaws, or guidance, attention during the design development phase should review site planning strategies and consider design solutions, with respect to yard setbacks, future development, and issues which would typically fall under municipal jurisdiction.

  • encouraging layers of the forest garden to extend into informal network of trails

  • observation of proximity to existing facilities, primarily: elder-care facility, women’s shelter, and daycare with secondary proximity to community centre, band offices, etc.

  • where the community centre is macro, and opens to a larger community, SML will be micro- open to community members.

  • use of site for gatherings

  • septic design ***soil sieve analysis required when weather permits***

  • considered as extension of functional activities which take place within the building. Example: fish and game processing centre. Other functional uses include: dining, gathering, playing, dancing, music, and presenting.


Main Building

The entire main floor is designed to be fully accessible at all major entry/exit points.


Entrance Lobby

  • cloakroom to left of entry and reception desk to the right, allow for flexible use of these provisions. Example: (1) reception desk is staffed fulltime with foodbank employee acting as concierge for the facility; (2) reception desk becomes accessible "office" / concierge (3) fundraising dinner scenario…reception desk becomes cash desk, etc.

  • vertical glazing allows for passive solar gain, distinguishing facade, and entry point, and to break up the mass of south elevation


  • this area between the lobby and dining hall will be the donor wall

  • shallow seating along wall (bench?) accommodates lines if expected

  • width to serve multiple traffic streams when required.



  • passive solar orientation

  • incorporating foodbank into larger context of community food related activities. The "forward" orientation of this usage in the building allows for lots of natural light, and access.

  • privacy of foodbank clients is respected by creating access points and entry from several points. These range from specific access to points which are co-mingled with other activities, giving clients choice with respect to degrees of privacy.

  • adequate space is provided within the foodbank to support moderate expansion from existing facilities, while at the same time allowing for flexible use of the space.

  • shelves on casters allows for maximum flexibility of layout on semi-permanent basis. Change of use with facility.

  • connectivity to office space via stairs

  • can serve as dry good storage for kitchen

  • display refrigerators accommodated along south wall hallway

  • display refrigerators easily accessed from greenhouse


Teaching Kitchen/Dining Hall

  • island range tops provide maximum student/instructor contact, by providing two-sided access to range tops. Height adjustable-for access?

  • kitchen location accommodates straight-line simple mechanicals runs

  • dining area seats 50 when arranged for dining. More for special presentations.

  • clerestory roof allows for reflected natural light. Operable clerestory windows provide natural ventilation/cooling of space, as well as allowing daylighting – saving energy.

  • interconnected indoor/outdoor (under roof) space in yard through the use of sliding glass

  • canning facilities for food preservation/storage

  • dishwashing/storage occurs along west and north walls

  • garbage/recycling in loading bay with easy access

  • getting adequate day lighting into this portion of the building will need to be given specific attention



  • offices receive abundant natural light, with light on two sides

  • mezzanine level has enough square footage for two offices approx. 12'x14', as well as small space for desk nook with computer access for clients or other users.

  • proximity of staircase, exit to north site, as well as dining hall allows staff to access all functional spaces efficiently

  • each office has enough space to serve executive functionality



  • serve as core, while balancing privacy of traffic flows from the range of functional activities

  • easily identifiable, accessible from outdoor gathering places

  • showers allow for cleanup after food cultivation or processing. As well, they may be utilized at times by foodbank clients.



  • optimized position for straight-line runs

  • proximity to loading bay allows loading bay to serve as service access to mechanicals

  • indoor/outdoor connectivity. Example: venting/ventilations. Exterior power/hose bibs/hydrant, etc.

  • HVAC systems to include passive redundancies. Example: operable clerestory windows for ventilation/passive solar combined with interior mass, as well as fire for heating/shading and ventilation for cooling.


Ancillary Structures:

Greenhouse/Potting Shed

  • designed to be heated with compost heat exchanger loop as well as thermal mass

  • integrated potting shed provides thermal mass (increasing the passive heating opportunities for greenhouse)

  • interconnected exterior roof element provides sheltered transport of fresh herbs and other greenhouse produce to washing stations, kitchen and/or freezers

  • height of peak combined with operable transom window and/or side lights encourages convective flow, facilitating drying of herbs, mushrooms, etc.

  • reduced costs through the use of natural materials in construction

  • potting shed designed with natural convection and height for drying herbs, etc. Overhead.


Fish and Game Processing Facility/Smokehouse: F&G House

  • easily sanitized facility for the processing of fish and game

  • onsite freezers for community storage (banking) of hunt and catch

  • integrated smokehouse for food preservation/storage

  • construction methodologies used to prototype proportional dwellings (aka... tiny homes)?

  • early enquiries regarding use of trail system visible in site photos confirmed use as access points for hunting grounds

  • the development of the (FGPF) is to encourage continued use of this informal network for this purpose


Loading Bay

  • could be constructed as unconditioned (enclosed) space. Converted in future to conditioned space.

  • houses garbage/recycling facilities for kitchen-proximity for straight run access

  • houses walk-in freezer(s)

  • designed to receive up to five-ton trucks (under roof) and is set back far enough to allow for 53' tractor trailer


Design Goals:


  • provided throughout the site utilizing low sloped approaches, as well as accessibility at all major entry/exits


Cost Effective

  • material costs controlled through the proposed use of local natural materials

  • durable enclosure systems for less maintenance costs

  • energy efficient design goals minimize operational costs in the near and long-term

  • materially inexpensive, labour intensive building techniques keep money in the local economy by employing community members directly in their processing



  • accounting for functional needs and integrated flexible use has been prioritized through layout of site as well as main building

  • the layout of main building allows for the two primary functions (kitchen/dining hall & foodbank) to be carried out independently of one another

  • foodbank can be closed off from lobby/foodhall entry allowing full access to foodhall facilities while foodbank/offices remain secure

  • flexibility of design also facilitates access between these primary functions. Change of use in the future is accommodated in the multiple entrance layout.

  • the site serves to extend functional space throughout entire property/ lot

  • utilize as many passive systems as possible. Design to have full functionality independent of grid in the event of emergency.

  • long term operational costs mitigated through a robust energy analysis engaged as part of an integrated design approach.



  • an abundance of natural light

  • generous indoor/outdoor spaces/gathering spaces

  • cultivation/preparation/storage/distribution of food in central facility

  • airtight/vapour open wall systems to provide optimum occupant health

  • indoor relative humidity balanced passively through the use of construction materials which have high moisture storage capabilities

  • surface relative humidities controlled by utilizing materials which have high vapour diffusion characteristics, which in combination with high moisture storage abilities, allows surfaces to dry efficiently eliminating possibilities for mold and mildew



  • robust construction to provide long term functionality

  • airtight/vapour open wall systems to provide optimum occupant health

  • natural enclosure system with earthen plasters have high degree of fire resistance

  • food cultivation/preparation/storage/distribution of food in central facility - emergency food stores/food sovereignty.



  • enclosure systems - straw or woodchip/clay- earthen plasters

  • structural systems - timber/stone

  • siting for passive and active solar

  • water collection/filtration

  • food cultivation/preparation/storage/distribution of food in central facility


Estimating Through the Stages of Design:


The "Program Estimate" is created in the Project Initiation Phase for the long-term, multi-year planning and for initial feasibility studies. It is based on a general description of the project as a concept and does not include any design, architectural work or detailed scope. It may typically include components for land acquisition, design, construction and construction management.

Level of Certainty: ± 35%


Schematic Design

The "Preliminary Estimate" is prepared during the Planning/Programming Phase and is based on an initial program containing building and site square footages and general site work. It is typically not based on any formal engineering or architectural work, which usually has not yet occurred. The Preliminary Estimate is most commonly used to develop the next year's budget or to add a project a current year budget to allow for further design development. For smaller projects of shorter duration and minimal complexity, the Program Estimate step may be eliminated in favor of the Preliminary Estimate. 

Level of Certainty: ± 20%


Design Development

The "Budget Estimate" is prepared during the Schematic Design Phase and is based on a defined scope and schematic design work. It is prepared using estimated material quantities and unit prices taken from the plans and applying a general unit cost to each item. This estimate includes all changes in definition and scope that have been identified and incorporated into the project design since the Preliminary Estimate. Items associated with the commencement of construction such as bonds, insurance, mobilization and overhead costs are also included. This estimate is used for evaluating project alternatives, value engineering, and evaluation of the project budget established by the Preliminary Estimate in the Planning/Programming Phase. For projects of a multi-year duration, the Budget Estimate should include an inflationary factor that escalates the cost to the dollar value at the mid-point of the construction schedule.

Level of Certainty: ± 10%


Construction Documentation

The "Engineers Estimate" is a detailed estimate prepared using the final construction documents prior to bidding and contract award, or otherwise selecting builders and or suppliers (e.g. time and materials contracts). It is prepared using unit prices for exact quantities of materials and labor taken from the plans. The Engineer's estimate is used to establish the final funding within the budget and to evaluate bids received.


Potential Community Partners (Orgs.)/Facility Programmers

  1. Kaebashiwim Respite Women’s Shelter

  2. ACYPS – Aanishinaabek Child & Youth Prevention Services

  3. Elders Facility

  4. Health Centre

  5. G’Shawdagawin & Binoojiinh Gamig Daycares

  6. Fisheries Building

  7. Aaron Roote Memorial Youth Centre

  8. James Mason Recreation


Kaebashiwim Respite Women’s Shelter

24 Christine St Southampton​


Works towards ending violence in the community by creating internal and external partnerships with other programs, services and individuals who share similar visions.


ACYPS – Aanishinaabek Child & Youth Prevention Services

23 Cameron Drive


Family Support Worker & Child Care Worker provides support to families and parents who are currently involved with CAS as well as provide support groups for parents who may seek advice or want to unwind from the challenges of parenting. Partner to provide cooking, parenting, gardening and other workshops to parents wanting these supports.


Elders Facility

41 Mason Drive Southampton

Cultural Development & Wellness Program focuses on the promotion and teachings of the Anishinabek cultural and spiritual values, practices and traditions.

Program Coordinator


Partner to provide workshops and teaching in all items listed above.

Home and Community Care assists families through homemaking, home management, meals and transportation assistance. Partner to encourage community gatherings with the clients for weekly gatherings and sharing of meals


Health Centre

47 Mason Drive Southampton

Aboriginal Healthy Babies Healthy Children aims to support families with children that are prenatal to six years of age.

Building Healthy Communities aims to address gaps in the mental health services and provides cultural services such as sweat lodges, fasting, healing ceremonies, land-based activities, traditional hunting and fishing, etc.

Community Health Nurse provides health promotion, maintenance, and injury & illness prevention.

Community Health Representative works with the community health nurse to promote healthy lifestyles and invites visiting professionals.

Family Wellness Program works to revitalize and strengthen Anishinaabek values and beliefs as they relate to families and community members.

Maternal Child Health Nurse focuses on the needs of preconception/prenatal clients and families, increasing knowledge in healthy lifestyles, nutrition, reproductive health, etc.

National Native Alcohol & Drug Abuse Program works to provide services in prevention, short term counselling, referrals and aftercare in regards to addictions.

All programs listed above can partner with the food hub to provide workshops in their respective fields ex. Nutrition, cultural fishing and hunting, diabetes, etc.


G’Shawdagawin & Binoojiinh Gamig Daycares

19 Christine St Southampton​


Fully licensed childcare facility providing care for children from six months up to 3 years of age. Partner to teach children gardening skills.


Fisheries Building

64 Cameron Drive Southampton


Provide program with a fish processing station when in need of one.


Aaron Roote Memorial Youth Centre

6439 HWY 21 Southampton

Community Mentor


Right to Play Saugeen Youth Leadership Program aims to provide after school programming for youth 10-19 years of age. Partner with the community mentor to develop a leadership program that involves cultural and practical teachings in regards to food as well as developing volunteer opportunities for youth.

47 French Bay Rd Southampton

519-797-2781 ext. 2300

Recreation Director & CARA Program aim to develop and implement recreation activities and community events for all ages. Partner to host meal plan cooking workshops that aids in overall physical health.


Programs Not on the Map

Ontario Works goal is to achieve improved employment outcomes for clients by increasing clients’ skill sets through training and workshops.

SEZ Adult Learning increases the education within the community through programs such as GED, and provides classes such as computer training, life skills, self management, self esteem building, budgeting, etc.

Both programs can partner to provide such training and workshops within our facility.




miijimlodge_schematic rendering.jpg

 Ashandiwin Community Food Centre

Ashandiwin_Logo #1.png
bottom of page