Credit: Emma Carscadden

Guest blogger series:
Crawling Toward Sustainability


This is the third in a series of guest blog posts in which Emma will track the progress of her office to become more sustainable. Next up, surviving summer heat without A/C!

Vancouverites are filling their tires with air and showing up to work a bit sweaty this week, May 11–17, for Bike to Work Week. And next month, June, is Bike Month.

Much is made during these events about what businesses can do to encourage employees to cycle. This is often the time when the subject of making showers available is mentioned, which of course would be greatly appreciated by those who cycle commute, I’m sure, but how feasible is it really? I recommend carrying an extra antiperspirant instead. 

More on biking in Vancouver

Bikes, bikes, bikes! Vancouver looks good on two wheels...


At our office, however, every month is bike month. Pretty much everyone bikes to work, and most of us do it all year-round. Some don’t ride in the rain (like me!), but some even ride in the snow (Katherine has studded tires so she won’t wipe out anymore!).

We recognize and enjoy the fact that our collective cycling contributes to our office’s sustainability, but we also recognize the challenges that come with having a bike-centric office. Sure, we don’t have to worry about parking, but what the hell do we do with all those bikes?

Often, all it really takes to encourage biking to work is somewhere—anywhere—to store bikes where they won’t be stolen. At our old (very small) office, you’d see as many as eight bikes lined up against one wall; but hidden behind a bookshelf, they were still out of the way. 

At our new office, at 715 East Hastings, we now have the luxury of being able to store our bikes in the basement; however, it soon will be renovated. So there are plans for an outdoor, locked and covered bike cage. We also, with the help of the Strathcona Business Improvement Association (https://www.strathconabia.com/), have a request in with the city for a bike rack to be installed on the sidewalk in front of our building.

And with those basement renovations comes the opportunity to install the holy grail of bicycle commuters—a (low-flow) shower. 

Green renovations are the best.




The Bruce Carscadden Architect crew


bruce carscadden ARCHITECT inc is a boutique architecture and planning firm, based in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside since 2000. Specializing in recreation, institutional and commercial projects for public and private clients, BCA is committed to producing beautiful and thoughtful buildings, and finding green and sustainable solutions within a client’s budget.  Almost everyone rides a bike to work.

Emma Carscadden is the promotions and marketing assistant at BCA, and writes proposals, submissions and copy for the website. She’s also in charge of setting up the office’s worm composter.