Ethel Lane House

The Greenest Residential Building in British Columbia

A long term vision for community supported living

The project involves design and construction of a standalone Laneway House in Kelowna on a property close to historical down town and Capri Mall. The project is to be inhabited by an adult with a disability who desires independence. The building will set a new standard for ecological conscious living for the Okanagan and designed to meet the Living Building Challenge (LBC) and other green standards.

This project is unique in British Columbia for a number of reasons. Generous funding from the Vancouver Foundation’s Giving in Action Fund has made a significant impact on the scope of the project.  That combined with the owners’ plans to support their disabled family member, lead them to consider the long-term impact of this housing project.  After much discussion all sides agreed that their vision fit very well with the intent of the Living Building Challenge.

This laneway house is only the 8th project to be registered for the demanding Living Building Challenge program. The Living Building Challenge is the most advanced green building certification program in the world. Buildings and neighborhoods that meet the challenge must demonstrate that their project is, among other things, Net Zero Energy, Net Zero Water, contains no bio-accumulative toxins, promotes healthy living, and is beautiful.

To meet these objectives the owners teamed up with En Circle Design Build inc.  One of the greenest residential design build companies in the Okanagan.  This building will set a new standard for ecological conscious living.

The design of the building needed to maximize the space in a simple and efficient manor.  The small 640sqf Laneway house is outfitted with many firsts for residential scale projects not just for the Okanagan and British Columbia, but also for western Canada. Under the guidance of Integral Design Group a tiny furnace will pull air through a 100’ feet of buried pipe, tempering the air before it is used to heat/cool the house.  Integral was has also incorporated a large Rainwater Harvesting system into the water systems of the house.  The rainwater providing flow to laundry, irrigation, and dishwasher will also be filtered to potable water standards.  Composting toilet and high efficiency plumbing fixtures farther reduce water consumption.  Installed on the roof, the Okanagan’s largest residential solar PV array will produce all of the energy for the building.  Passive house design principles will result a thick double walled super insulated exterior and triple paned windows.  Materials for the building will be Red List Ready (non toxic as described in the LBC) and ethically sourced.

In the community there has been much enthusiasm.  Strong support for the project from Integral Group, the local Cascadia Green Building Council Collaborative, The City of Kelowna, University of British Columbia Okanagan, Roxul Inc, and Glenmore Millworks have made this project a success.

Solar Panel Campaign


Kelowna NOW

CBC Radio West

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Global News Video

See full article here:

Daily Courier Article “Open house for ‘green’ home” Tuesday, October 7 2014

Interview on CBC Daybreak with Chris Walker

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Green Champion

Integral Group - Project lead: Trevor Butler & Jamie Dabner



Green Advocate



glenmore millwokrk



Green Collaborator

For more information and to arrange site visits please contact Deren Sentesy 250-979-8005