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Ian Gillespie of Westbank announces partnership with World Housing


May 5, 2014
by Canadian Architect

Westbank Projects Corp. President Ian Gillespie recently announced his company’s partnership with World Housing. This social-venture partnership model means that for every condominium purchased at its newest development called Vancouver House, World Housing is able to build one home for an impoverished family living in a Third World landfill community; 395 homes will be gifted from purchasers of Vancouver House. This is the first Platinum Partnership – a one-for-one commitment – by a developer to World Housing.

 “The vision of World Housing and its founders mirrors our own goal of affecting positive change in communities and I believe, will hold meaning for buyers,” said Gillespie. “Westbank has always put strong emphasis on social responsibility. Through this initiative, we hope to set a new norm in residential development and inspire buyers, who will ultimately be the driving force.”

“We are very excited that Westbank would make such a commitment,” said Pete Dupuis, co-founder of World Housing. “Their support will result in more than 2,200 people being able to move from living in the dump to a home with roof over head and a lockable door. The social change created for these families is truly life-changing.”

Vancouver House, an innovative world-class development designed by Copenhagen/NY-based architecture firm, Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), is slated for completion in 2018 with a vision of rejuvenating and creating an entire Vancouver neighbourhood. For each residential unit sold in this development, a home will be built and gifted to a family currently living in a shack in a Cambodian garbage dump community. A typical World Housing home is a 130-square-foot metal-insulated structure that rests on elevated supports to protect from the elements. They are equipped with electricity and have a rainwater collection system to provide fresh water.

The World Housing story, including a scale-model of a WH home, is part of the Gesamtkunstwerk exhibition now open in Vancouver. The exhibition profiles the city’s architectural coming-of-age and the Vancouver House development from its inception.


bjarke ingels and ian gillespie
bjarke ingels and ian gillespie


Canadian Architect

Canadian Architect

Canadian Architect is a magazine for architects and related professionals practicing in Canada. Canada's only monthly design publication, Canadian Architect has been in continuous publication since 1955.
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