Size: 16 337 m2 (175,850 ft2)
Location: St. John’s, NL
Client: Government of NL
Architecture: Gibbons Snow Architects Inc. (Lead and HQ design), Sheppard Case (Annex Design)
Engineering: Nova Consultants Ltd. (Civil and Structural), Core Engineering Ltd. (M&E)
The RNC Headquarters has historic connections to the Fort Townshend Site and the interconnectivity of the site and the formation of the RNC are significant. The use of masonry, connoting stability and strength, and the addition of modern, high-tech materials such as curtain wall, metal composite panels and integrated shading devices, provides the imagery of the past as well as the future. The wall tower is the focal point and marks the entry to the building and also becomes the “badge” of the building, which supports the flags at its peak.
This building is a prime example of the skills of the lead designer, Greg Snow, to work with an existing building as a starting point and to modernize and expand the functions, while at the same time, carefully considering the functional parameters of phasing the construction of a building that must be occupied during demolition, reconfiguration, and new construction. Sandy Gibbons, the project manager, was key in working with Greg, the design team, and the user groups and other stakeholders to pull off a very successful project. Gibbons Snow was the prime consultant and lead architect from programming, all the way through design and construction. The RNC Campus on Parade Street is the provincial headquarters for the Constabulary for the province. The St. John’s campus, as well as being the provincial headquarters, also provides police service for the Eastern Avalon area. The gross area of the existing facility was 11,135 sq. m. The expanded gross area of the completed building is 16,337 sq. m. This project contains a lobby museum, labs, interview rooms, holding cells, evidence rooms, shooting range, labs, fitness facilities, state of the art communications centre, underground garage and staging area, and administrative offices and meeting rooms. This part of project was completed in 2013. The last phase of the project was completed in 2016 with the re-development of the former Memorial University College, a historic building which contains the support facilities for the RNC. Both buildings are sited on one campus and are connected with an underground link containing the firing range, an underground passageway and connection to the geothermal heating system located within the centre parking area.