As a building ages, the building owner is presented with opportunities to improve the building’s energy efficiency through renewal or rehabilitation. Toronto Community Housing Corporation (TCHC) chose 9 of their older buildings throughout Greater Toronto to be a part of their ReSet Energy Program. The program was focused on renewing a set of older buildings to achieve energy savings and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2016, our Toronto team was engaged by Baird Sampson Neuert Architects (BSNA) to provide building enclosure consulting on 3 of the 9 buildings in TCHC’s energy reduction portfolio. All the buildings were constructed in the 1960s or 1970s. We completed an initial building enclosure condition assessment, including reviewing the roofs, walls, windows, doors, balconies, and below-grade assemblies to identify maintenance needs and opportunities for thermal performance upgrades.

The renewal work in the authorized repair program included window replacement, brick repairs, partial overcladding of the walls with an exterior insulation and finish system, and roof renewal with added insulation. Internal mechanical, electrical, and plumbing upgrades were also included in the overall scope.

We worked closely with the architect, client, and window manufacturer to conduct thermal modeling and confirm that the new windows would meet the strict energy performance requirements needed to meet TCHC’s overall energy reduction targets.

During the construction phase, we conducted periodic field reviews and collaborated with on-site personnel to prioritize action items and resolve unforeseen conditions.

The project is currently in progress.

Date:

May 2, 2019

Client:

Baird Sampson Neuert Architects

Owner:

Toronto Community Housing Corporation

Our Role:

Building Enclosure Consultant

Key Services

Energy Retrofits
Maintenance and Planning

Buildings constantly go through renewals as materials and components reach the end of their service lives. Instead of replacing components like-for-like, a building retrofit can present you with a good opportunity to reduce your building’s energy consumption and associated costs and the building’s carbon footprint of operations. RDH retrofit projects use a Passive House design approach to create energy-efficient buildings. A well-insulated, airtight enclosure reduces the need for heating and cooling in addition to improving thermal comfort.

On any building energy retrofit project, our team compares the building’s performance with a database of other similar buildings to determine if it has poor, average, or superior energy performance. Next, we complete a high-level assessment of potential energy conservation measures associated with the retrofitting work, including energy cost savings, capital costs, and payback period. Next steps may include applying for incentive funding to complete a more detailed energy study, including whole-building energy modeling, and then working with a contractor to implement energy improvements.

Sarah Gray | M.Sc., P.Eng., CAHP

Principal, Building Science Specialist
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