Zymeworks Office and Laboratory

Located in the new Main Alley M2 Tech Building by Westbank, the Zymeworks Office and Laboratory Tenant Improvement was for the new anchor tenant occupying five floors and over 82,000 square feet. The clinical-stage bio-pharmaceutical company is dedicated to the discovery, development, and commercialization of next-generation multi-functional bio-therapeutics.

The new office and lab was built for the public company’s requirement for a larger and state of the art research and chemistry lab, along with office and amenity space for their employees. A heavy emphasis of the project was on mechanical scope required for the lab portion of the build which comprised of over 70% of the overall construction budget. The office components were built with Steelcase demountable wall systems for a “future-proof” way of potentially reconfiguring office floors in the future.

Zymeworks Office and Laboratory Tenant Improvement Key Details:

  • Complete shell space tenant improvement.
  • Tenant improvement that was completed in parallel with base-building contractor constructing the building. Critical construction efficiencies were discovered in partnership with
    base-building contractor during pre-construction, such as navigating sprinkler & occupancy permits for a faster construction schedule.
  • Over 50% of construction budget was allocated to the mechanical system in order to meet the critical demands of the laboratories. Modeling was key to understand plenum space requirements, and ceiling heights for wall systems.
  • Project spans five floors and consists of office space, laboratories, boardrooms, workstations and employee amenities.
  • Phasing of the project was key due to the size and complexity of the project and to ensure trades stayed efficient.
  • Novacom Services include: Pre-Construction, Design Assist, Budgeting, Value Engineering, Site Assessment, Strategic Planning and Construction Management

Thank you to entire project team and trade partners who made this project a success. Prime Consultants for the project include:

Russell Chernoff
Chernoff Architecture
(W) 604-669-9460
(E) rus.c@cta.bc.ca

Mary On
Integral Group
(W) 604-687-1800 ext. 2014
(C) 604-561-2363
(E) mon@integralgroup.com

Zymeworks Pre-Construction Modelling and Design Assist

Construction Management has changed the way projects are being successfully delivered. Project teams are working together with a heavy investment into pre-construction so that the efforts being made during construction are more efficient. The Zymeworks project started in the more traditional model of an invited tender, which Novacom won. However, right after being awarded the project, the handover of the space was delayed as the base building was behind schedule resulting in the start of construction being pushed out by three months. A disappointing way to start a project, but what turned out to be a blessing in disguise and one of the reasons why the project has been so successful.

To take advantage of the delay, Novacom proactively initiated taking an active role in pre-construction by collaborating with the client, consultant team and trade partners during weekly meetings to dial in the construction strategy. With such a complex mechanical system and minimal plenum space, a key element of pre-construction was the completion of constructability review and clash detection using Autodesk NavisWorks and BIM 360. Each of the consultants’ Revit models was brought into BIM 360, and on a separate weekly Revit call we worked through all of the mechanical and electrical clashes, particularly with the base building structure and systems.

As a team, we were able to understand how each element of the mechanical and electrical systems worked together and would fit into the limited space. Novacom, along with our trade partners and the project team members were able to identify key issues and clashes in the design, re-work the details, and complete needed modifications prior to starting construction saving valuable time on site and costly change orders. Zymeworks has been a perfect example of how modeling a project can connect project team members to work collectively, allow for the pre-fabrication of details before they get to site, and save both money and time during construction.


Zymeworks Inc. contracted Novacom Building Partners for the tenant improvement buildout of our new office and lab space in Vancouver, BC. The project covers more than 82,000 square feet over 5 floors, with just under 15,000 square feet of lab space.

It’s been a pleasure working with Novacom Building Partners on this project. They are professional at all times, with clear and timely communications throughout the project. The Zymeworks TI buildout is a complicated project and Novacom has exhibited excellent collaboration and has efficiently resolved issues that arise due to site conditions and other externalities. We are pleased with the way the project is being managed, and are happy to offer this letter of reference and our recommendation of Novacom.

Candice Madalena Associate Director, Business Operations