Actis is a Latin term for getting things done or made.
The principals at Actis, Phil Lapointe and Ian Gray, embody this spirit in every project they take on. In the process of seeing each detail through to completion, they also find creative solutions and strategies for their plans.
In a city like Vancouver where the old and modern intersect, and nature blends with constructed living spaces, it can be a fun challenge to bring conflicting elements together, for example, repurposing vintage materials into a new structure. Likewise, it poses a test to find ways of preserving heritage features while modernizing an old building.
At one current site, the Larchmont Abode, Actis has found a way to preserve and display the hundred year old beams of the original structure by using them for all the front deck components, such as railings and spindles.
For another project, they incorporated reclaimed wood into a mantelpiece design for a client. By using a sample piece to display various degrees of sanding, the client was able to select the precise level of finishing they wanted for their mantel.
Both within the city limits and beyond, Actis has taken on some memorable work. One of Phil’s favourite jobs was for a developer on Bowen Island. They built 14 decks out onto the water, most of which towered some twenty feet in the air. They used lumber milled on site, and the finished decks became major selling points for the properties.
Ian recounts working on a 10,000 square foot mansion in Southlands during an entire Vancouver winter (ie. it was wet!) He enjoyed gaining speed and accuracy in his framing skills while integrating some unique features, and having access to heavy machinery and cranes.
It’s the variety of projects that keeps the work interesting and challenging for Actis. Ian and Phil are full of great stories about projects they’ve been a part of. Here is where they’ll share some of their favourite moments, past and present.