Building with sustainability

From the outset, the aim is to provide a model for living that is financially and environmentally sustainable. The extensive retrofit of mechanical and electrical systems, as well as the development of the immediate site areas will have as their goal occupant well-being combined with energy & waste efficiency. Several key, innovative technologies have been identified as being well suited to this site. Together, the residential and commercial units will implement and share in these new technologies for a significant reduction in the ongoing utility costs of the building complex along with a dramatic reduction of its carbon footprint.

In the long term, this proposal will strive to generate more energy than the building consumes. Such a goal entails significant improvements to the performance of building assembles, as well as installation of on-site energy production and conservation technologies.

High-performance retrofits to walls and roofs will substantially improve insulation and prevent air leakage, reducing the amount of energy needed to heat and cool the building. Building automation systems will maintain efficient operation of building services (heating, cooling, ventilation and lighting). Snow melt and rainwater from rooftop areas will be collected in rainwater cisterns, offsetting the use of potable water for toilet flushing and agricultural uses. A solar system may be included for pre-heating of water, and a geothermal system may be included for pre-heating and pre-cooling of conditioned air. A combined heating and power plant will prompt the biggest shift away from reliance on the regional hydro-electric grid, aspiring to an essentially off-grid solution.

The renewed Orchard Park will be a Centre for Sustainability, showcasing technologies which will integrate the building with the surrounding land.