The primary planning and development themes represented in our vision for the Avalon World Centre District include sustainability, economic prosperity and self-reliance, socially supportive community life, world heritage architecture and cross-cultural learning.

Sustainability

Avalon’s leading edge sustainability framework, community planning process and design-build systems will be demonstrated throughout this model conservation and development district.  The project will be linked to thousands of other ecovillages, sustainable settlements and holistic learning centres already established in the world through associations such as the Global Ecovillage Network and United Nations.  Ecovillage populations typically range from 50 to 5,000 people and place a high priority on ecological building, renewable energy systems, local food production, sustainable economic activities, and supportive social and family structures.  Many of these ecovillages welcome visitors and incorporate educational activities and demonstrations.

The project will evolve Avalon's own design-build certification that optimizes human health and generates a net gain of energy and restoration benefits for the earth. We believe our certification system will not only achieve the highest energy plus standard, but will also be more integrated and comprehensive than other green rating systems like Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Passive House Certification or Living Building Challenge. Some of the exciting sustainable planning and design-build features of the proposed campus village district include:

  • Sensitive site preparation, geobiological assessment and feng shui building placement
  • Ecosystem, fisheries and wildlife habitat enhancements, resulting in a net increase in biodiversity, conservation zones and parkland
  • Pine bettle tree thinning, forest restoration and wildfire prevention measures
  • Ground-source, solar and other new energy technologies combined with the best green building practices in the world
  • Integrated, regenerative design that considers the buildings, eco-utilities, water features and landscaping as a whole system
  • Indoor modular construction of the building envelope to minimize neighbourhood impacts and to improve energy efficiency, waste reduction, project coordination and working conditions for the trades
  • On-site solar aquatic greenhouse for sewage nutrient and water reclamation
  • Innovative stormwater management including wetland retention ponds, biofiltration swales, rooftop gardens and rainwater collection
  • Water re-use for toilet flushing and irrigation
  • Sustainable low maintenance landscaping with edible plants, healing herbs, xeriscape perennials and wildflowers
  • Year-round organic food and nursery production in dome greenhouses, as well as small-scale animal husbandry and aquaculture
  • Green building materials and furnishings (non-toxic, natural, recycled or reclaimed)
  • Uplifting, harmonious use of color, lighting, natural textures and hand-crafted artisan work
  • Eco-expo and on-site demonstration of energy conservation, natural ventilation, renewable energy and other new green technologies
  • Solid waste reduction, recycling and composting
  • Sustainable transportation alternatives including solar carts and light rail
  • Pedestrian and bicycle-orientation with low impact vehicle access and parking
  • Compact cluster and nodal patterns of development combined with sustainable agriculture for "highest and best uses" of land and resources 
  • Increased population density and eco-engineered infrastructure creates economic and technical base for improvements to local water districts
  • Multi-functional, efficient uses of homes and buildings, with some shared spaces for community and visitor use
  • Site efficient residential lofts above stores and offices


Economic Prosperity and Self-reliance

Economic prosperity and self-reliance will be valued and consciously pursued in Avalon’s campus village. Avalon campus facilities will generate multiple streams of revenue, ranging from courses, training programs and conferences to healing services, food and accomodation packages.  The creation of a world-class retreat and conference centre can facilitate joint marketing with SE Kelowna golf courses, wineries and other attractions, as well as ensure year-round support for visitor services like the eco-tours.  The sustainability education, demonstration and research facilities at the campus centre provide an optimal environment for the complementary eco-exposition and retail businesses.  The vibrant arts environment creates opportunities for artisan shoppes, multimedia theatre and other forms of edu-tainment.  The holistic medical institute and wellness spa complex contribute to health promotion and service opportunities.  

The World Centre project also promotes community diversification and will bring many socio-economic benefits to Kelowna citizens, businesses and institutions.  Avalon's campus village could collaborate with Okanagan College, UBC Okanagan and the Economic Development Commission in stimulating creative innovation and the knowledge base to transition the Okanagan valley towards a green and prosperous future.  The Sustainability District's horticultural greenhouses and agro-forestry initiatives will contribute to Kelowna's organic food supply and support value-added enterprises.  SE Kelowna residents can create additional income from accomodating bed and breakfast visitors and secondary suites where appropriate.  The more on-site economic opportunities that are created in the project area, the less the campus village residents, visitors and surrounding neighbourhoods will need to commute into other parts of the city for work, food, shopping and entertainment.

Agri- and eco-tourism development

Avalon will promote and stimulate agri- and eco-tourism development at the campus village, optimizing its close proximity to the Greenway and Scenic Canyon Regional Park.  We will also help support and tour visitors to SE Kelowna orchard enterprises, wineries, specialty farms and other tourist sites such as the Kettle Valley Railroad, Myra-Bellevue Provincial Park, Big White and Nordic ski areas.  At the campus village, our innovative solar aquatic and dome greenhouses, edible landscaping and organic community gardens will demonstrate how agricultural productivity can flourish amid residential development on marginal lands.

Hiking eco-tours into Scenic Canyon Regional Park will also help create more visitor use and support for the park’s natural and cultural interpretive facilities and greenway improvements proposed by the City of Kelowna and the Central Okanagan Regional District.  We will also invite the participation of Westbank First Nations whose ancestors and people consider the canyon area lands, fish and wildlife sacred.  Westbank First Nations has their own future community development interests in the area that may be compatible with Avalon's Sustainability District vision.

Socially Supportive Community Life

Real community liveability will be experienced by both residents and visitors at Avalon's campus village. Local citizens and tourists will be warmly welcomed to explore new millennium ideas, hands-on learning, healing and rejuvenation. Residential living will be intergenerational, healthy and participatory, with diverse housing styles and sizes to suit different needs and varying income levels. The  will be child-friendly with a community open school and daycare facility, special youth and family programs, adventure playground and children’s gardens. Daily life will include many opportunities for social enjoyment, artistic expression, community celebration, and transformative spiritual and outreach work. As well, Avalon's campus village district will be globally connected with many other intentionally designed communities and holistic learning centres with whom local residents and visitors can communicate with for mutual sharing and inspiration.

World heritage architecture and cross-cultural learning

Avalon will incorporate the best of global architecture into the homes and buildings of the campus village, as part of our commitment to promoting cross-cultural peace and understanding. Traditional vernacular building and landscaping styles will be creatively combined with modern needs and green technologies. In this “global village” visitors will enjoy diverse architectural features, artistic decor, customs, cuisine, gardens, sacred spaces and activities that reflect the different cultural themes of the campus buildings, accomodation facilities and bed and breakfast hosts. The First Nations and pioneer history of the canyon lands will be honoured in interpretative facilities and programs. The campus village will be non-sectarian and will honour the world’s major religions and philosophies, expressing universal spiritual values and goodwill to humanity.