Building Magazine


Canadian Projects Ranked Second at World Sustainable Building Conference (SB08)

Leading experts and researchers gathered in Melbourne, Australia, in September to discuss advances in buildings and houses. The international conference included the Sustainable Building Challenge, and the Canadian presentation of the following three projects was judged second in the world, after Germany:

  • The 23-storey Manitoba Hydro Place in downtown Winnipeg features a geothermal heat pump system, a living “green” roof, a solar chimney to enhance fresh air ventilation and a double external wall to reduce heating and cooling requirements. The primary goal is to achieve a 60 percent reduction in energy consumption below the Model National Energy Code for Buildings (MNECB). Read the details on the Manitoba Hydro Web site.
  • The 16-storey Minto Roehampton multi-unit residential building in downtown Toronto includes heat recovery ventilators in each suite, renewable passive solar energy to preheat fresh corridor air and a unique sub-metering system to ensure residents pay for the electricity, hot water and cold water they use. NRCan validated that the building design was 38 percent more energy-efficient than the MNECB. The building is also a LEED® Canada candidate for Gold Certification. Read the Minto news release.
  • The Gulf Islands Operations Centre in Sidney, British Columbia (B.C.), was designed to minimize the dependence on outside sources of energy and to lessen its impact on the environment. It features an ocean-based geothermal system with radiant heating and cooling, photovoltaics that provide 20 percent of energy needs and a system to reduce water consumption by 60 percent by using rainwater in toilets. The building design was modelled at 75 percent more energy-efficient than the MNECB. Read a synopsis at the Light House Sustainable Building Centre.

The Challenge began in 1996 and has engaged over 20 countries to advance the development of an international co-operative process to compare existing environmental performance assessment tools and develop new ones. For more information, visit the SB08 web site at

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