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Submerged/ Emerged:

The Islands of Richmond


Vancouver, British Columbia.

August 3rd, 2100. 36°C. Partly Cloudy.


We have come to a point of no return in Western Canada, where the Strait of Georgia waters have risen and caused mass destruction throughout coastal urban environments. Rising over two metres in the past eighty years, metropolitan centres and suburbs have been flooded and many residents displaced inland, sending some up into the Rocky Mountains. Richmond, part of what once was the greater Vancouver metropolitan area, was especially affected by climate gentrification. Much like other coastal urban centres, Richmond’s residents have relocated to establish new, self-sufficient communities that rehash human lifestyles from a pre-colonial era. Merging advanced micro renewable energy technologies and the heritage of coastal fishing villages, a modern twist on a historical typology has been born. Deriving the inspiration from Japanese villages that once donned these isles, a community and circular economy has materialized along the receding shoreline.


Project Team: 

Zachary Colbert, Assistant Professor, Carleton University Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism     

Monika Emery, PhD Candidate, Department of Geography 

Matthew Nestico, M.Arch Alumnus, Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism

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