Manufacturing plant promises environmentally sustainable construction products for Vancouver Island

A Starbucks in Abbotsford, B.C., built with environmentally sustainable pre-fabricated panels is shown: (Alexzi Building Solutions)

A new manufacturing plant is coming to south Vancouver Island that will offer innovative and environmentally sustainable building products for the construction industry.

Alexzi Building Solutions is investing $50 million in a project that it says will create 200 jobs in the region. The company will produce pre-fabricated panels from a mixture of sand, water and a proprietary ingredient that the company says is a greener alternative to concrete.

“The construction industry is screaming for a change,” said Alexzi Building Solutions CEO Amber Simpson. “With the ability to produce this material in the factory, we’re going to be able to save roughly 75 per cent of the construction time in the assembly of the buildings.”

Simpson says due to the environmentally sustainable properties of the material, the product will greatly impact the emission of CO2 in the environment. She says pre-fabricating the panels in a manufacturing facility prior to installation on a building site will also speed up construction, saving both time and money.

The panels will be developed under the certified manufacturing program of Vancouver-based Nexii Building Solutions.

“The construction industry is entering a period of substantial adjustment,” said Simpson. “The environmental concerns from traditional construction methods and the need for innovations that can enhance efficiencies make the product a perfect solution.”

Simpson says the panels offer a simplicity of manufacturing with fewer materials while providing endless design options. She says the product is fire and water resistant and are assembled on the construction site by simply bolting the panels together.

Simpson says the decision to build a manufacturing plant on southern Vancouver Island was an easy one.

“We have the ingredients here to produce the material,” said Simpson. “It's a sustainable material that’s going to innovate the construction industry and we’re seeing such growth on Vancouver Island right now – with our population and housing – (that) we’re needing a new material to apply to our industry.”

Alexzi Building Solutions is currently looking for the best site on southern Vancouver Island to house a 150,000 square-foot facility.

“Our goal with our timeline right now is that we are going to be building our plant in the fall,” said Simpson. “Hopefully we will be up and operational this time next year.”

Simpson says the facility will be constructed from panels manufactured in the Nexii Building Solutions plant located in Squamish.