Fact-Finding Mission

Sustainable Building in Canada

Be part of Canada's zero emissions future in construction!


Why travel to Vancouver together with Switzerland Global Enterprise?

Vancouver has been consistently ranked among the greenest cities in the world for its progressive thinking around sustainability. Vancouver’s objective is to become the world’s greenest city by 2025, to transition to zero emissions buildings in all new construction by 2030, and to deploy 100% renewable energy throughout the city by 2050.

These ambitious targets provide a huge export potential for Swiss innovators in green building design, renovation, and construction.

  • S-GE and the Swiss Business Hub Canada see a need for green building products that is currently not met by Canadian suppliers.
  • Swiss SMEs in the sustainable building industry have a first mover’s advantage if they act now.
  • By travelling together with fellow Swiss innovators and suppliers to the construction industry, you will be able to leverage the Swiss Business Hub’s networks, both at the official level through the Consulate General of Switzerland in Vancouver and its connections to Canadian decision makers and businesses.

Who should participate?

We are excited to welcome Swiss innovators ready to discover the opportunities that await in the green building sector in Canada. If you are active in the sustainable building industry – working in sustainable building materials, processes and designs, wood construction, retrofitting, planning, etc. then you cannot miss this chance.

What can you expect from this business mission?

This business trip will allow you to learn first-hand about current trends and opportunities in the sustainable building market in Vancouver, and to adapt your business strategy accordingly. By leveraging S-GE’s network in Vancouver, we will invite important local stakeholders in the green building space to make it easy for you to establish first connections and build your network with Canadian experts and companies.

Register now


Target audience Companies involved in the design and build of sustainable buildings and products the field of sustainable buildings and construction: building envelope, energy efficient building systems, building automation, heating/ cooling and ventilation
Organizer Swiss Business Hub Canada and Switzerland Global Enterprise
Event language


Country experts

Annina Bosshard, Switzerland Global Enterprise, Consultant USA & Canada


ǀ Day 1│ Sunday│ Vancouver
  • Individual arrival in Vancouver
  • Swiss Business Hub Canada: Introductions and some thoughts on ‘’How to do business in Canada‘’ -  The Swiss Business Hub Canada is the key contact point for Swiss and Liechtenstein enterprises looking for export opportunities in the Canadian market and it is responsible for implementing Swiss export strategies in Canada. At this session the team of the SBH Canada will provide some practical business etiquette as well as logistical informationfor the busy days aheadexploring Vancouver’s sustainable building sector.
  • Welcome Dinner
ǀ Day 2 │ Monday │ Vancouver
  • Morning: The Vancouver Economic Commission: Presentation + Q&A "Inights into the sustainable building market in Greater Vancouver" - We will meet with the officials of the Vancouver Economicrepresentatives of the city of Vancouver Commission to learn about the Greenest City action plan and how the city is planning to transition to zero emissions buildings in all new construction by 2030. The city officials will show us plans for the upcoming (new & retrofit) zero emission projects planned for the city
  • Afternoon: The Exchange Tower | Downtown Vancouver: "Turning the Old Stock Exchange building into LEED Platinum pioneer" - The Exchange Tower is a conversion of the Old Stock Exchange heritage building into a zero emissions building which includes hotel, restaurants, and offices, funded by Credit Suisse and designed by world-renowned Swiss architect Harry Gugger. Mr. Franz Gehriger, President of Swissreel Investments Ltd. and Daniel Hawreluk from Iredale Architecture will take us on a tour of the building. The mechanical engineer involved in the project will also be present and happy to answer questions.
  • Evening: Consulate General of Switzerland in Vancouver | Residence of the Consul General: Evening Reception + Business Networking - During the evening, you will have the chance to network with leading figures from the Swiss and Canadian communities of Vancouver involved in construction, building design, and real estate, and discuss the latest building developments in Vancouver.
ǀ Day 3 │ Tuesday │ Vancouver
  • Morning: Project Presentation "8th and Pine" (tbc): "8th & Pine" is a planned 34 storeys mass timber tower slated for West 8th Avenue and Pine Street in Vancouver. It will be the tallest wood building in the world once complete. We will get exclusive project insights and meet representatives of this project. Brock Commons | UBC’s Vancouver Campus: We will visit the the 18-storey Brock Commons student residence on UBC’s Vancouver campus, which currently holds the title of the tallest wood building in the world. We will learn about collaboration between Canadian and EU design teams and get an insight into lessons learned.
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon: Dudoc Innovation Space: Swiss-Canadian Roundtable in World Café Format - Round tables on topics that will explore the challenges and opportunities for collaboration between Swiss participants and Canadian builders, architects, designers, and distributors of sustainable building products.
  • Dinner
ǀ Day 4 │Wednesday │ Vancouver
  • Morning: Guided Innovation Tour + Networking - Buildex is the the largest building industry forum in Western Canada. You will have the opportunity to explore the state of the sustainable building market in Canada, and benchmark your offerings with international suppliers of products, materials and building technologies. Together we will visit selected booths of Canada’s most innovative companies in building design, construction, renovation and management.
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon: Project visit and Networking
  • Evening: Networking Dinner with members of Passivehouse Canada: The networking dinner allows for an informal exchange with members of Passivhouse Canada that are also present at Buildex.
ǀ Day 5 │Thursday │ Vancouver
  • Morning: Workshop "Accelerating knowledge exchange and collaboration between the Swiss and Canadian building industry ecosystem": ZEBx is a collaborative platform that strengthens the public, private and civic capacities for zero emission buildings in Vancouver and British Columbia. It is an industry hub that facilitates knowledge exchange to accelerate market transformation. We will together work on finding best ways to combine Swiss and Canadian knowledge to achive the Canadian zero emission goals.
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon: Visit of a single family Passivhouse project - We will put our helmets on and visit a Passivehouse project that is under construction, which will allow us to see firsthand what’s happening on the project and meet the construction team.
  • Exchange with Passivehouse Members | Downtown Vancouver
  • Dinner
ǀ Day 6 │Friday| Whistler
  • Morning: Transfer from Vancouver to Whistler + Visit of Passivehouse Project - Squamish, a former logging town in coastal British Columbia, has seen rapid growth in the last few years due to its proximity to Vancouver and countless outdoor activities on its doorstep. TarsemHaus, an eight-unit townhouse development, makes a striking ecological statement from its Passive House goals to its clustered design that enhances social connection and small-community character.
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon: Visit of the British Columbia Passivehouse Factory - Based in Pemberton, British Columbia, BC Passive House (BCPH), is a full service prefabrication company specializing in the design and construction of high performance panelized building systems, specialized structural panels (including CLT and NLT) hybrid systems, heavy timber packages and Passive House construction + Wrap up with the Swiss Business Hub Canada and S-GE team and all participants - Together, we will review the impressions and experiences from the last few days in Vancouver and ask ourselves the question: what do we take home and what is next?are the next steps?
  • Evening: Transfer back to Vancouver - …or make good use of the fantastic outdoors and world-renowned skiing destination Whistler Blackcomb and stay for the weekend.
ǀ Day 7 │Saturday |Vancouver
  • Individual departure


Please note that the program above is preliminary and may be subject to change. It can be adjusted according to the composition of the delegation and the participants’ individual needs. The final program details will be distributed to all participants prior to departure.

Feedback on the program by prospective participants is expressly welcome.

Participant information

Travel dates

  • Arrival date: Sunday February 9, 2020 individual arrangement to arrive in time for welcome dinner at 7pm
  • Departure date: Saturday February 15, 2020 or according to individual schedule

Participation costs

Member Gold / CHF 4'200.-

Member Silver / CHF 4'500.-

Non-Member / CHF 4'700.-

Included in the price:

  • Hotel accommodation from Sunday, February 9 – Saturday February 15, 2020 at Hotel Pan Pacific Vancouver: 300-999 Canada Place, Vancouver, BC V6C 3B5
  • Local transportation for visiting events and visiting locations
  • Participation at events mentioned in the program
  • Breakfast, lunches, and dinners as mentioned in the program (other individual meals are self-pay)

Not included:

  • Intercontinental flights to and from Vancouver
  • Pick-up from and drop-off at airport
  • Accomodation in Whistler
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