2023 Winner

Chloe Boisvert

Chloe Boisvert graduated with honours from UBC’s Bachelor of Environmental Design program in 2018, where she was the recipient of the Design Excellence Award. During her undergraduate studies, she spent a semester abroad in Brisbane, Australia, and completed a study abroad trip to Stockholm, Sweden. These experiences led her to a role as a designer at Carscadden Stokes McDonald Architects in Vancouver, where she continued to develop her design skills and ethos by working on a variety of public and community buildings at various scales. Currently a second-year student in SALA’s Master of Architecture program, Chloe’s recent design work has explored adaptive reuse, material recycling, passive design strategies, and storytelling. Raised on a farm in the interior of BC, Chloe believes in the value of taking time to understand distinct identities of place through the design process and is interested in further exploring the interface of the urban and the rural through an interdisciplinary lens.

Project Description

Exploring socio-ecological wildfire resilience strategies in the wildland-urban interface

Wildfire events are increasing in occurrence, intensity, and scale, spurred on by the effects of climate change. Economic and socio-ecological losses to human and animal lives, farmland, structures, equipment, and habitat are mounting both in areas that have historically experienced wildfire activity and in those that have not, with far-reaching impacts that threaten lives, livelihoods, air quality, and food security. As wildfire events shift from a regular natural disturbance to a serious risk case, the need for resilience in built form and social attitudes is evident. This project proposes a study of wildfire-impacted regions ‘on the edge’ in the wildland-urban interface where community-led and bottom-up social, ecological, urban design, and architectural wildfire resilience approaches have been employed, and will speculate on their relevance and possibilities as they relate to Western Canadian communities. Proposed regions of study include commonly owned agricultural and forestry communities in Galicia, Spain where territory is managed such that fire is activated and managed as a tool alongside livestock activity, as well as neighborhood centres in Queensland, Australia, where locally operated community spaces have been formalized as a medium for orchestrating community-led responses to bushfire events.