After an incredible 46 years of dedicated service, Number TEN said farewell to its longest serving employee, John Wassenaar today. Known as the ‘Cal Ripken Jr. of Number TEN’ for his legendary consistency and durability, John’s tenure with the firm began in 1968 when he was hired to produce blue prints in the firm’s early days at #10 Donald Street.

After year’s of hard work, John’s keen interest in blue printing would evolve into a role as a draftsman with the firm. His talents would then evolve to construction administration, where he honed his skills for over 30 years until his retirement on November 28, 2014.

John is known throughout the construction industry for his approachable nature, level-headed perspective and solid common sense. Throughout his career, he applied his skills on a wide variety of projects across multiple industry sectors including schools, hospitality and entertainment facilities as well as a host of civic and commercial projects.
In the 1980’s, John organized Number TEN’s first softball team and would bring his entire family out to either play or cheer the team on. He is also known for his strong golfing and bowling abilities, the latter of which he demonstrated at his well-attended staff retirement celebration held at Laverendrye Lanes last evening. John also enjoys relaxing at his cottage on Baconia beach, or heading down south to enjoy the Florida sun in the winter.

We wish John continued health, happiness and well-earned relaxation and family time in his retirement. His dedication to his clients, wide and friendly smile, and keen sense of humour will be dearly missed at Number TEN.
Congratulations John for your well-earned retirement.




Number TEN is putting the finishing touches on the newly upgraded Canadian Coast Guard Station at Bamfield Inlet near Tofino, BC.

Our ten year involvement with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans began with a master plan study in 2005 and has since seen the construction of the new Rigid Hull Instructors Operators Training School (RHIOT), a new simulator building with video-based virtual marine training equipment to train the inflatable boat operators, a new Operations building for the Coast Guard's Search and Rescue services, and major renovations to the two residences on the site that house the Coast Guard and RHIOT staff.

The multi-million dollar revitalization of the Coast Guard Station at Bamfield, originally established in 1907, is wrapping up with the new site work tying all the buildings together and will be commemorated with a symbolic grand re-opening of the station in the spring of 2015.


Earlier this month, Number TEN volunteers from the Education and Recreation Studio ran a design-build session with students from Seven Oaks School Division's MET High School program in Winnipeg. The goal was to engage students in a challenge to design and build a landscape feature that reflects the innovative spirit and hands-on learning culture of the school; with an emphasis on teamwork, sustainability and creative problem solving. The Number TEN project, dubbed Make Your Mark, is part of an international initiative called the Green Apple Day of Service, which aims to transform schools into healthy, safe and productive learning environments through local volunteer service projects.

Green Apple Day 4MET School students designed and built a school landscape project as part of the Green Apple Day of Service

“This was a very rewarding experience for our team – there were so many great ideas from the students, and to see them come to life on the site was very exciting,” says Number TEN architect Gabe Derksen, an advocate for green building and 21st century school design. “It’s not often that students are given an opportunity to put their own personal stamp on their place of learning.”

Using reclaimed materials from the recent renovation of their school, Number TEN’s volunteer team, led by Derksen and backed by a volunteer team of architects, interior designers and technologists guided students in the development of a building strategy plan, followed by a build session where the students constructed the project on-site in just one day.

The students successfully put together a beautiful project featuring oversized “MET” signage; a bench made from reclaimed lumber, stairs and concrete blocks; as well as a flower bed and screen wall feature which includes student artwork constructed from reclaimed sections of concrete sidewalk. The flower bed and signage will remain on site permanently.

Number TEN Partner and Education Studio Principal Doug Hanna saw the Green Apple Day of service as an excellent opportunity to engage youth in design and involve them in a greater conversation around the importance of environmental responsibility. “The Green Apple Day of Service is a great way for us to give back to the school community through volunteer effort,” says Hanna. “But the biggest reward for us is seeing the students so engaged in creating part of their future school environment and taking ownership of it in the process.”

Green Apple Day Students 2Green Apple Day Students 5

Number TEN’s Victoria office is conducting a design study for a unique multi-residential housing project on Vancouver Island that would be constructed entirely out of re-purposed steel shipping containers. The study assesses the viability of modifying surplus steel containers from a large import/export business, shipping them directly from the factory to the site for final assembly.

The design study, which aims to create more affordable rental housing options on Vancouver Island, envisions a three-storey, 35 apartment complex comprised of 35.5 sq.m. (382 sq.ft.) one-bedroom units. The project is currently awaiting a suitable site on which to construct a prototype building.


Number TEN was invited to participate in an Architectural Institute of British Columbia exhibition to promote bird-friendly development in Vancouver. According to a recent study by Avian Conservation and Ecology, up to 42 million birds are killed each year in Canada from collisions with windows. 

Number TEN earned three Manitoba Masonry Awards last evening, taking home prizes for the creative incorporation of masonry at the Seasons of Tuxedo mixed use commercial development on Kenaston Avenue, the artfully restored Metropolitan Entertainment Centre, and the innovative LEED® Silver certified Winnipeg Humane Society project. The Awards, held for the first time since 2007, were given out in a beautiful gala dinner at Winnipeg’s Fort Garry Hotel on October 23rd.

 Manitoba Masonry Awards 2014

Number TEN Architectural Group and 5468796 Architecture were recognized with two prestigious international design awards at the World Architecture Festival on October 2nd and 3rd, 2014 at the spectacular Marina Bay Sands Hotel in Singapore. The two firms were recognized for their innovative concept-design submission for the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV). The AGGV project earned the Future Project of the Year award, as well as the category winner in the Future Projects Competition Entries.

World Architectural Festival Awards

Number TEN made a splash at this year’s Commerce Design Winnipeg Awards, taking home a Jury Grand Prize for the Qualico Family Centre and an honorable mention for the MET Theatre Renovation and Expansion. Number TEN was the only firm to earn recognition for two projects. Both buildings are contributing to Winnipeg’s resurgent design economy.

Brent and Dave Commerce Design Awards2

Number TEN earned two City of Winnipeg Access Awards for the new Entry Building at Assiniboine Park Zoo, and for the restoration of the Peguis Pavilion at Kildonan Park. The Access Awards recognize projects that address the design needs of all user groups, and promote the importance of accessibility and universal design. Universal design makes life more equitable, safe, comfortable and affordable for everyone, including people with disabilities.

Peguis Pavilion
Prime Consultant: Number TEN Architectural Group
Structural Engineer: Crosier Kilgour and Partners
Mechanical and Electrical Consultant: KGS Group
Landscape Architects: Scatliff + Miller + Murray

Peguis Pavilion Night  sm

The original Peguis Pavillion at Kildonan Park was designed in the early 1960’s by Morley Blankstein and Doug Gillmor, founding Partners of Number TEN. A fine example of Miesian architecture, the public venue was designed with a focus on functionality, simple elegance, and clean horizontal lines offering superb views of its attractive park setting.

To bring the facility up to modern accessibility standards and improve its viability as a modern hospitality venue, Number TEN recently renovated the pavilion in anticipation of a new restaurant tenant. A key design challenge was to improve public accessibility without compromising its historic architectural value. Now home to WOW Hospitality’s Food Evolution restaurant and café, the Peguis Pavilion once again shines as a popular hospitality attraction that welcomes park visitors of all abilities.

Some of its notable accessible design modifications include:

• Addition of an elevator for improved access to each floor.
• A new, large universal family washroom on the lower floor.
• Renovations to the upper level washroom for barrier free access.
• Automatic swing door operators throughout the venue.

Assiniboine Park South Entry Building
Prime Consultant: Number TEN Architectural Group
Landscape Architect: The Portico Group
Mechanical and Electrical Engineering: SMS Engineering
Structural Engineering: Crosier Kilgour & Partners

The new South Entry Building on Roblin Avenue replaces the former zoo entrance, welcoming visitors to the impressive redevelopment of the Assiniboine Park Zoo which includes Manitoba’s hottest new attraction: the 10-acre Journey to Churchill exhibit. The new entrance provides a signature image for the zoo, while enhancing the experience of visitors and staff alike with new amenities including a gift shop, accessible washrooms and improved administrative facilities.

Universal accessibility was one of the key design objectives for the new South Entrance Building. To meet this objective, Number TEN’s design team integrated a wealth of accessibility features including:

• Gently sloped landscaping and accessible parking with a dedicated drop-off/pick-up zone in front of entrance.
• Automatic doors for all public spaces.
• Millwork for ticket booth, guest services and retail area accommodates wheelchair visitors and people of all heights.
• Accessible washrooms for visitors and staff.
• Use of textures and materials selection that allows for intuitive wayfinding.


Dignitaries, staff, and guests attend the grand opening of the Journey to Churchill exhibit at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Number TEN Architectural Group helped design the polar bear exhibit.

The North Man Dene Drum Group play as guests are welcomed to the new Journey to Churchill exhibit at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Number TEN Architectural Group had a hand in the exhibit's design.

Clear blue skies and a bright warm sun welcomed the sizable crowd that gathered to witness the Journey to Churchill ribbon cutting ceremony at Assiniboine Park Zoo on Thursday, July 3, 2014. After weeks of heavy rain and formidable winds, the pleasant weather was a cheerful start for the dignitaries, staff, and guests in attendance.

“We want to thank the design and construction team: Portico Group, Number TEN, and Stuart Olsen,” said Assiniboine Park Conservancy President and CEO Margaret Redmond.

“To us, you are heroes working through the long cold winter, torrential rain, in knee high mud from sun up to sun down,” said an emotional Redmond who also acknowledged the numerous public and private partnerships needed to develop the exhibit. 

The ceremony marked the end of years of visionary campaigning, fundraising, research, design and development. Representatives from all levels of government were on hand to bring greetings including Aboriginal elders from the Ojibwe and Dene nations who had blessed the site in a Sunrise Ceremony yesterday.

“What we have here is something deeper than looking at animals and their behavior, but honouring our connection, a spiritual connection, with the animals and our ancestors,” Elder Marie Louise Campbell explained.

With the rapturous rhythm and singing of the North Man Dene Drum Group, the exhibit was ceremoniously opened as the only comprehensive Northern exhibit in the world.

The 10-acre site showcases northern wildlife including polar bears, ringed seals, snowy owls and muskox. Visitors are led along a scenic trail aligned with informative displays, activities, and native foliage as they move from each of the exhibit`s 3 distinct zones. The Wapusk Lowlands, Gateway to the Arctic and Churchill Coast represent the essence of northern Manitoba, from tundra to civilization, giving visitors an opportunity to interact with the animals from a number of viewing platforms as well as from inside a 10-foot-wide acrylic tunnel that allows visitors to watch polar bears swimming above them.

State-of-the art interactive displays, as well as a documentary film projecting onto a 360 degree viewing horizon at the Aurora Borealis Theatre, also offer insight to the sensitive northern climate. The ribbon cutting ceremony marks the end of a long journey for the project team, who were thrilled to watch the animals interact with their posh new surroundings.

More grand opening photos on Flickr:


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