Posts Tagged ‘Case Studies’

Calgary Public Building

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

Heritage landmark brought up to speed from the inside

Over its 80 year life, the interior of this landmark heritage building in downtown Calgary had been compromised by several insensitive renovations, although the exterior remained largely intact and in excellent condition. The challenge posed to the design team, was to create a leading edge, energy efficient and sustainable office environment within the building, while preserving  and enhancing the historic character of the exterior.

By Jerry Hacker


Toward Sustainable Communities

Friday, May 20th, 2011

Pilot projects clear path to future

More information on the
FCM Awards at

Among the many factors that helped advance the sustainable design movement in Canada over the last decade was the realization that the construction and operation of buildings accounted for almost 40% of our annual GHG emissions. Not surprisingly this realization initially translated into a building-focused approach to resource and energy conservation.

Compiled by Jim Taggart


Native Child and Family Services Toronto

Friday, May 20th, 2011

Sensitive design supports native culture in the heart of the city

The new Native Child and Family Services of Toronto [NCFST] consolidates social and culture-based services for aboriginal children and families within an existing  2,800m2 office building in the heart of downtown Toronto.

By Dean Goodman


SAB HOMES 5 - Passive House ABCs

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

Houses that deliver heating and cooling on a shoestring energy bill

The term Passive House refers to a rigorous voluntary performance standard that substantially reduces the environmental impact of a building by reducing energy consumption to a level 80-90% less than that of a standard Canadian house.


SAB HOMES 5 - Wood Avenue House

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

Large Georgian home leaves small enviro footprint

Ottawa’s first LEED Platinum detached house is located in the city’s upscale Rockcliffe Park neighbourhood northeast of downtown. It replaces an older, much modified and energy inefficient home that the owners had occupied for many years.

By Linda Chapman


SAB HOMES 5 - Living Off Grid

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

The Art of working with the Sun

Taking control of an essential utility service, by becoming your own power provider, can be an empowering experience, especially when it is also sustainable.
This article focuses on the use of naturally produced electricity rather than on its production. Sustainable methods of electricity generation include photo voltaic [PV] panels, wind generation or hydro generation. See the book review section of this issue for more on this subject. Some simple design rules to follow are:
• do not heat anything with electricity,
• eliminate all wasted power sources,
• consider mechanical rather than electronic, and
• be open to alternative methods.
Keeping these points as the basis for all your decisions will avoid complications and unnecessary cost

By Hugh Perry


SAB HOMES 5-Pearson Residence

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

Modest home relies on skilled detailing and passive design

This modest 2,000sf house is located on Bowen Island, which lies at the mouth of Howe Sound, a 20-minute ferry ride from West Vancouver. The site is in a west-facing rural lot framed by a ridge of exposed granite to the north, and forest to the south and east. Due to the western exposure and bowl-like topography, the site has a distinct microclimate and can easily reach temperatures of 30oC on sunny days from early May through late September.

By James Tuer, MAIBC, LEED AP


First Peoples House

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

Innovation of low-tech ideas make a modern building that preserves tradition

This 1,196 sq.m multi-purpose educational facility, located at the heart of the University of Victoria Campus, houses the Indigenous Graduate Student Union, Native Student Union, classrooms, faculty and counseling offices, Elders and
student lounges, study areas and a ceremonial space.

By Alfred Waugh


Enermodal HQ

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

Sustainable engineering firm shows how it’s done in LEED Platinum headquarters

In the design of Enermodal’s new headquarters, A Grander View, the primary goal was to create a LEED Platinum office that would be the most energy-efficient in Canada. Since its completion in late 2009, energy consumption for the 2150 m2 building is 69 kWh/m2 of energy per year. This was very close to the design energy modelling predictions of 65 kWh/m2. This compares favourably with the Canadian average of almost 400 kWh/m2. Water consumption is a metered 82 % lower than for a conventional building – exceeding predictions by 9%. This level of performance was largely accomplished through an integrated mechanical system, although building form, orientation and materials all played a part.

By Stephen Carpenter


Pavillion Espace 400e

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

Sleek, renovated public building employs passive heating and cooling

Located just north of the city walls, on a pier in the Bassin Louise, Pavillon Espace 400e was conceived as the focal point for Quebec City’s 400th anniversary celebrations which took place in 2008. The project transformed a 1950s cement factory [which had most recently served as an interpretive centre] into a venue for live performance, exhibitions, workshops and other events.

By Jim Taggart