The waterfront gateway to Kelowna: Accoya® Wood marina

Accoya® Wood chosen as the superior material for downtown marina.

Kelowna is a destination for over 1.5 million tourists annually and the "Downtown Marina" is the waterfront gateway to Kelowna. The new marina opened in the summer of 2013 to provide a much-needed temporary dockage for tourists and resident boaters wanting access to downtown Kelowna. Accoya® Wood was selected for the non-structural uses in the retail/service structures and visitor comfort stations located on the 350' pier that provide visitors with a respite from the elements. Siding, trim and louvers were all made from Accoya®.

Kasian Architecture set out to utilize the natural beauty of wood in this spectacular lake front project. However, wood, even tropical hardwoods and common local softwoods are susceptible to cracking, twisting and rot when used outside in a diverse desert climate like Kelowna. With these concerns in mind, the Kaisan team sought a real wood product that still met their strict requirements for sustainability while offering a low maintenance life span. The Accoya® product was able to hit all these high standards.

Why Accoya® Wood?

Accoya® modified wood was chosen over alternative species like Fir and Cedar due to its resistance to extreme weather conditions. Accoya® has a 50-year warranty for exterior use and 25 years when installed below grade or submerged in fresh water. This exceptional warranty provided the developers and the City of Kelowna peace of mind over the life span of this important public resource. Wescorp, who owns and operates the marina for the next 15 years before handing it over to the city of Kelowna, needed a specialized wood that could stand up to the rigors of the local environment without incurring unnecessary additional maintenance costs.

Now a few years into the project's life, Accoya® is providing visual evidence that life cycle costs will be reduced. The docks made from pressure treated lumber which were stained at about the same time as the above dock structures, appear to be severely faded and in need of re-coating.


Accoya® also met the town's and developer's strict requirements of sustainability and commitment to the lake environment and all those that depend on it with its FSC certification and Cradle to Cradle Gold standard. The town's mandate to support and promote local businesses was accomplished by utilizing the Kelowna based firms of a local construction and millwork company.

Proprietory Technology

Accoya® is the world's leading high technology long-life wood. The Accoya® wood production process takes sustainably-sourced, fast growing softwood and enhances nature, creating a modified wood that matches or exceeds the durability, stability and beauty of the very best tropical hardwoods. Through a process called acetylation, Radiata Pine goes through a permanent molecular modification - taking the unstable hydroxyl group which causes wood to absorb and release water while also attracting microorganisms and replacing this acetyl group with a much more stable acetyl group. The acetylation process has been known to scientists for over 80 years but has only been commercially available for general use in the last 10-15 years. 

Accoya® is now being used around the world in projects as diverse as vehicle bridges in the Netherlands and theme parks in Hong Kong. The iconic Sneek bridge in the Netherlands constructed using Accoya® for all of its structural components is given a rated life span of 80 years.

We look forward to partnering with you to achieve your project goals. Contact us to collaborate!

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