Oak Hammock Marsh is a 350 hectare prairie wetland site 20 kilometres north of Winnipeg. Since its reclamation by Ducks Unlimited in the 70s, it has become an internationally renowned staging area for hundreds of thousands of migrating waterfowl each year.
In the early 1990s, Ducks Unlimited sought to create a headquarters building and world-class conservation centre. The challenges of sharing the marsh environment and minimizing disturbance were met through sensitive site planning, innovative architecture, selection of sustainable materials and technologies, and creative programming. Hilderman Thomas Frank Cram was responsible for site design from concept to construction, which included prairie restoration, strategies to reduce wildlife conflicts, trail layout and detailing, and with Number 10 Architectural Group, the development of award winning living roof details. These and other pioneering “green” building practices turn the centre itself into an educational asset. The site as received numerous awards, including Attractions Canada’s Best Outdoor Site (2000), British Airways’ Best Environmental Experience (2002), and the International Green Roof Award of Excellence (2003).