Thursday 1 December 2016

Saskatoon River Landing Proposal = Bird Hazard


Jan Shadick, Executive Director, Living Sky Wildlife Rehabilitation, says that Saskatoon’s birds are at risk if Meewasin Valley Authority approves plans for a new development on Parcel YY, River Landing, by Triovest Realty Advisors.

 “The East Tower at River Landing is a hazard to birds due to the extent of glass planned for the exterior of the building,” says Jan. “I’ll be speaking at the MVA meeting on Friday to ask that Saskatoon join other progressive cities in leading the way toward a greener, more bird-friendly approach to building design.”

Outlined below are portions of Jan’s presentation to Meewasin Valley Authority.

Red-winged blacbird singing

Birds and Buildings in Saskatoon
Birds connect people with nature and the beauty of the natural world. They provide critical ecological functions, consuming billions of insects daily, pollinating plants, and dispersing seeds.

Birds also contribute significantly to our economy as bird-watching has become the second most popular leisure activity in North America after gardening.

And yet, Canadian research estimates that 25 million birds die each year from window collisions with mid- and high-rise buildings.

According to Triovest Realty Advisors project brochure, “Glass will be the primary cladding material used on the tower. The selected glass is not intended to have a defined colour, but instead, it will pick up natural colours and tones reflected from the sky, creating a constantly changing and vibrant façade.”

“The amount of glass in a building is the strongest predictor of how dangerous it is to birds,” says Bird Friendly Toronto, Best Practices Glass. There are solutions: window film, visual marker treatments, increased density of mullion spacing, frosted glass designs, spandrel panels, sunshades and louvres.

“Please delay approval of this project until more bird-friendly designs are included in the plans,” Jan Shadick urges.

nest building

Show Your Support
You can show your support for protecting Saskatoon’s birds by attending the public session of the Meewasin Valley Authority Board meeting at noon on Friday, Dec 2, 2016, in the Upper Lounge of the Saskatoon Club, 417- 21st Street East.

Further Information
City of Calgary, Bird-Friendly Urban Design Guidelines
City of Toronto, Bird-Friendly Development Guidelines
City of Toronto, Toronto Green Standard
City of Vancouver, Bird-Friendly Urban Design Guidelines
City of Markham, Bird-Friendly Development Guidelines
Ontario Association of Architects, Open Letter on Bird-Friendly Design
American Bird Conservancy, Bird-Friendly Building Design Guide
Fatal Light Awareness Program (FLAP), BirdSafe