The No.2 North Drainage Pump Station in Richmond, BC is one of 39 pump stations in the city’s drainage system. The stations are being upgraded to cope with rising sea levels and increased storm frequency and duration due to climate change, as well as increased urban development in the catchment. After the upgrade, the station now has a pumping capacity of 4,700 litres per second, compared to the original capacity of 1,900 litres per second.
Aesthetics and public space improvements have featured strongly in the city’s recent pump station upgrades. For the No. 2 Road Drainage Pump Station, the city sought to go one step further. Public art was integrated into the whole design process, with local Vancouver-based artist Germaine Koh forming part of the design team.
The structure was designed to be a piece of functional art. Structural, geotechnical, mechanical and electrical disciplines worked together to make the artistic concept a reality. The result was a glass-walled building showcasing the system’s controls and emergency generator, and inviting the public to connect with the purpose and functionality of the station, as well as with the various types of water interacting with the station.
The pump station is located near the No.2 Road bridge, which connects the City of Richmond to the Vancouver International Airport. The station is also close to the Richmond Oval, the River Green hi-rise development, and the City’s commercial centre. The dike itself is a very popular trail for walkers, joggers and cyclists.