ISSUE NUMBER 65 | FALL 2019 | PM40024961 | $6
The PASSIVE HOUSE issue
LIVING LIBATIONS HEADQUARTERS Passive House in the realms of human wellbeing and ecological responsibility
DESIGNING FOR ACCESSIBILITY The Rick Hansen Foundation
VIEWPOINT Making building performance a selling point, and moving on from the glass tower
SABMag - FALL 2019
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INTERNATIONAL EXCELLENCE IN BUSINESS-TO-BUSINESS PUBLISHING
For more about the articles in this issue!
This issue published in association with:
Industry News, Products, Events 10 Living Libations Headquarters
Passive House in the realm of human wellbeing 16
Valleyview Town Hall New municipal building aims for Passive House Plus
CONTINUING EDUCATION The Ken Soble Tower
A Passive House transformation 27
Fire safety in tall wood buildings By Jim Taggart
Designing for Accessibility
The Rick Hansen Foundation 40
Charter Telecom Headquarters Passive House a superior environment for employees
VIEWPOINT Moving on from the glass tower
Passive House on an upward curve Interview with Rob Bernhardt, Passive House Canada 32
ISSUE DON’T MISS NEXT WINTER 2020
LEED Platinum-targeted mixed-use building inserts contemporary architecture into historic urban fabric
ÚMcEwen Graduate Study and Research Building Schulich School of Business, York University Climate responsive solar chimney only one part of a hybrid active/passive bioclimatic system
ÚAnnual Special Supplement: 2020 Directory of Products and Services for Sustainable Building Cover: The Passive House-certified Living Libations Headquarters. Photo: John Lehmann Photography. SABMag - FALL 2019
YORK UNIVERSITY SCHULICH SCHOOL, TORONTO One of the most environmentally sustainable and socially responsible academic buildings in North America.
Architect: Baird Samson Neuert Architects. Contractor: Ellis Don.
INLINE FIBERGLASS LTD. provided the bird-friendly, triple-glazed high-performance windows that contributed to achieve 71% energy savings and 67% in greenhouse gas emissions compared to Canadian Model National Energy Code reference building. The building is one of the first to use principles of Thermally Active Building Systems (TABS) to achieve LEED Gold certification. GRE E N B NG LD I UI
C A NA D I
CALL US TO DISCUSS YOUR NEXT PROJECT! email@example.com 4
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1.866.566.5656, ext. 226
Dedicated to high-performance building Member Canada Green Building Council
SABMag is a proud member and official media partner of the Canada Green Building Council.
THERE IS NO
PLANET ‘B’ This was perhaps the starkest message to be seen on the many signs carried by teenagers in the Climate Strike rally I took part in last month. Rather than teach my Sustainable Design class in a Downtown lecture theatre, I offered my students the opportunity of a very different field trip.
VISIT www.sabmagazine.com PUBLISHER Don Griffith 613-421-7588, firstname.lastname@example.org EDITOR Jim Taggart, FRAIC 604-874-0195, email@example.com SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER Patricia Abbas 416-438-7609, firstname.lastname@example.org GRAPHIC DESIGN Carine De Pauw email@example.com SUBSCRIPTIONS/CHANGE OF ADDRESS Lyse Cadieux, firstname.lastname@example.org
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Amid a crowd of 100,000, a few were clearly focused on the Instagram moments rather than the climate crisis – but mostly it was otherwise. The informed and passionate speeches made by young people not yet old enough to vote, was compelling. Although none of my students spoke to the crowd, the ‘reflections’ they submitted to me afterwards were blunt and to the point. One of them observed; photo: Roy Grogan
“The choice between ‘in action’ and ‘inaction’ is all that it takes for a phenomenon to occur. People care – this isn’t just some phase or rebellious little event; this is people who are tired of not knowing whether their children will live to see a brighter future. This is about youth who are tired of being undermined and written off as less intelligent members of society. How is it that we’re smart enough to be taught Calculus, the laws of physics, be leaders in our school communities, yet not be smart enough to understand the state of the world, what is good and bad and the glaring facts that science has proven again and again about the troubles we are facing.” The solution could be conjured from a minestrone of small initiatives, as Paul Hawken argued in ‘In Drawdown’ – but where are the politicians actively implementing his recipe? As the young people at the Climate Strike clearly understood, they are being kept out of the kitchen. Hence the challenge, “Let’s do it now!” What does this mean for architects? With zero carbon and net positive buildings a reality, ‘inaction’ now means being satisfied with something less. Our mission is to close the gap between what is achievable and what we actually achieve. Yes, we owe this to our children, but we also owe it to ourselves.
Jim Taggart, FRAIC Editor
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NEWS RAIC REPORT CANADIAN ARCHITECTS DECLARE PLEDGE CALLS FOR ACTION ON CLIMATE
The call to action includes:
The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada’s (RAIC) Committee on
• Design for holistic reductions in greenhouse gas emis-
Regenerative Environments is calling on Canadian architectural and
sions. Advocate for investments in a rapid transition to
design firms to commit to combatting the climate crisis by signing a
resilient climate-positive alternatives. Eliminate waste and
new Canadian Architects Declare pledge.
harm and support a quick transition to circular economies. • Design for holistic health, resilience, and regeneration;
The declaration, titled ‘Canadian Architectural Professionals Declare
respecting the rights and wisdom of Indigenous Peoples.
Climate and Biodiversity Emergency and Commit to Urgent and
• Adopt regenerative design principles and practices to
Sustained Action’, is a grassroots effort developed by architects across
design and develop projects and environments that go
the country and members of the RAIC Committee on Regenerative
beyond the standard of net zero in use.
Environments. It is based on the UK’s ‘Architects Declare’ initiative.
• Advocate for the rapid systemic changes required to address the climate and ecological health crises, as well as
“The design, construction, and operation of our built environment
the policies, funding priorities, and implementation frame-
accounts for nearly 40% of energy-related carbon dioxide emissions,
works that support them.
and pervasively impacts our societies and the health of the living systems that sustain us,” says the Canadian statement.
A companion document, ‘Designing for the Future’ (https:// raic.org/raic/designing-future) expands upon actions that
The declaration urges architects and designers to raise awareness of the
architects and designers can take.
impact of the built environment on climate change and take immediate action through their projects and roles as advisors, advocates, educators, and enablers.
LATEST SABMAG CASE STUDY: RJC ENGINEERS ON ENERGY MODELLING The latest SABMag one-page digital case ENERGY MODELLING determines conservation measures
at schematic design stage Buildings account for approximately 30% of total Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions in Canada. As a result, Canada has pledged to reduce carbon emissions 30% below 2005 levels by 2030 under the Paris Climate Action Plan. As such, different provinces across the country are adopting more contemporary energy codes and standards to advance the energy performance of buildings towards the ambitious 2030 energy efficiency goals. For example, the Province of British Columbia and City of Toronto have adopted new stringent energy standards: the BC Energy Step Code and the Toronto Green Standard V3, respectively. These new standards have a passive house philosophy with the goal of “net-zero ready” buildings by 2030. Energy modelling and commissioning are now of crucial importance considering a building as an integrated system of structural, building enclosure, mechanical, and electrical elements. As advocates for sustainable design, RJC has conducted energy studies for existing buildings, whole building energy modelling for new constructions, and whole building air-tightness testing for a wide range of projects across Canada. RJC Engineers has helped clients to meet their energy and GHG targets for a variety of projects from commercial/institutional buildings to multi-unit residential towers for both new construction and existing buildings. As a case study, RJC Engineers was retained as structural, building envelope, and energy consultants for a new 15-storey high-rise concrete tower in Victoria. The project must demonstrate 15% energy and GHG emissions reduction over NECB 2015 baseline building. The energy modelling was performed at the Schematic Design stage to determine the energy conservation measures (ECMs) that must be implemented to synergize the thermal characteristics of the structural, enclosure, mechanical and electrical systems of the building.
The images are examples of the graphical output from modelling software (IES VE - https://www. iesve.com/), and convey the relationship of buildings to surrounding structures while taking into account solar effects on the building form and façade.
The developed ECMs include utilization of high-performance building enclosure assemblies (overall R-10+ effective), high-performance glazing systems with multiple low-e and hard coatings (as opposed to tripleglazing), energy recovery ventilators to supply fresh air, balcony slab to envelope area reduction, and highly efficient electrical systems. In addition, a comprehensive thermal comfort study was carried out, and several passive cooling strategies were determined to meet the thermal comfort criteria of the BC Energy Step Code.
study, ‘Energy Modelling determines conser-
DARTMOUTH WAREHOUSE FIRST INDUSTRIAL BUILDING IN THE COUNTRY TO BE CERTIFIED UNDER CAGBC’S ZCB STANDARD
vation measures at schematic design stage’,
by national engineering firm, RJC Engineers,
announced that 355 Wilkinson
describes how energy modelling is of such
crucial importance at the schematic design
Warehouses in Dartmouth, NS –
stage to determine the energy conservation
has achieved the Canada Green
measures (ECMs) that must be implemented
Building Council’s Zero Carbon
to synergize the thermal characteristics of the
Building – Design certification.
structural, enclosure, mechanical and electri-
A part of the initial Zero Carbon
cal systems of the building. The developed
Pilot Program, 355 Wilkinson is the first industrial building in the
ECMs can touch on more than just the enve-
country to be certified under the ZCB Standard—and has the
lope but also HVAC and electrical systems, both passive and active. See
potential for tenants to achieve $0 on their heating bill. Given the
it at: https://sabmagazine.com/case-studies.
industrial asset class represents over two billion square feet of real
estate across 11 Canadian markets, there is a remarkable potential for carbon savings to be had if more property owners follow East
PASSIVE HOUSE IN LANGLEY A DEMO FOR OTHERS
Over one quarter of Passive House projects in North American are located in BC, partly motivated by the desire to achieve the higher steps of the BC Energy Step Code. For a new single-family home in Langley, Innotech Windows + Doors introduced the Defender 88PH System, a Passive House Institute (PHI) certified window system. The homeowners prioritized functionality, comfort and sustainability in the charming 5,000 sq.ft. farmhouse which will house two families. The house uses Innotech PHI-certified windows with true triple glazing and Terrace Swing Doors with Guardian Vacuum IG glass, and has a R-76 net average roof assembly with blown cellulose and graphite-infused EPS. (Continues on page 8.) 6
SABMag - FALL 2019
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Owens Corning Inline Fiberglass Schock Isokorb Structural Thermal Breaks Dekrail / Steenhof / Element5 EnerSign Windows and Doors Tech-Crete Sound Solutions Tempeff North America
35 39 45 48 53 55 56
Mitsubishi Heating and Cooling / Quadlock / Richelieu / Innotech Sustainable Forestry Initiative Euroline Windows and Doors Enbridge Gas CPCI Owens Corning Engineered Assemblies
Schöck Isokorb® Structural Thermal Breaks. Prevent condensation and mould, cut heat loss. ▶ Prevent condensation and mould ▶ Reduce heat loss by up to 90% ▶ Improve the effective R-value of your building envelope by up to 50% ▶ Increase warmth of interior floors by up to 19°C/34°F ▶ Most effective way to meet code requirements for continuous insulation
Uninsulated balconies, canopies, slab edges and parapets penetrating building envelopes create thermal bridging between the cold exterior and the warm interior structure that supports them, causing heat loss, condensation and mould. Isokorb® Structural Thermal Breaks prevent thermal bridging by insulating the building envelope at the penetration, while supporting loads equivalent to conventional concrete and/or steel structures, offering multiple benefits. Isokorb® Structural Thermal Breaks for concrete construction (above) contain engineered stainless steel rebar for casting into interior and exterior sides of the penetration. Isokorb® Structural Thermal Breaks for steel construction (left) bolt interior steel structures to cantilevered balcony supports, canopies or rooftop connections.
Schöck North America | +1 855 572 4625 | email@example.com | www.schock-na.com SABMag - FALL 2019
NEWS Langley Passive House The house was the subject of the August Passive House Canada monthly educational event for green building enthusiasts in and around Vancouver. The event included a selfguided tour of the house and a presentation of its construction techniques and building materials, including a full-size mock-up of the
“For a private company to make
the investment in zero carbon design shows incredible ambition and foresight. The key to com-
REPORT SHARES INSIDE STORY OF BC’S TRAILBLAZING ENERGY STEP CODE
pleting a project of this complex-
ity is to work as an integrated
From the BC Energy Step Code’,
team. This specialised approach
explains how BC created a first-
and commitment from our client
in-North America building code
will result in a one-of-a-kind net zero facility that changes the stan-
designed to improve energy effi-
dard for this global company,” says Drew Hauser, Director at mcCal-
ciency and transform the market
towards the ultimate goal of netzero energy-ready performance.
NEW BOOK AN INDISPENSABLE GUIDE ON SOLAR ELECTRICITY BC-based New Society Publishers will soon
The Step Code is a section of the BC Building Code that local gov-
release the new book, Solar Electricity
ernments may use, if they wish, to require or incentivize builders to
Basics, 2nd ed: Powering Your Home or
deliver a higher level of energy efficiency performance in new con-
Office with Solar Energy by Dan Chiras,
Ph.D. a noted author of numerous books on renewable energy. The book offers a
The publication details the collaborative process that yielded the Step
concise and up-to-date guide covering all
Code in the hope that other jurisdictions will develop a similar code,
the essentials, such as:
and the 10 key lessons learned.
• How to size, cost, and choose the right system,
1. Pitch a Big Tent, and Embrace Shared Leadership
• Where to mount a system for best per-
2. Set Your End Game, then Backcast
3. Fear Not Your Local Governments
• Type of modules and inverters,
4. Provide Simple, Clear, and Accessible Materials
• How to install and maintain batteries,
5. Encourage Collective Ownership
• Cost vs benefit for solar electric systems, and
6. Identify and Tackle Cost ‘Pain Points’
• How to connect to the grid.
7. Offer an Easy On-Ramp to Performance Codes 8. Consider Elections and Seasonal Factors in your Roll-Out Plan 9. This is a Change-Management Process
Publisher: New Society Publishers (https://www.newsociety.com)
10. Continue to Refine and Improve the Standard Over Time ‘Lessons From the BC Energy Step Code’ is available via the Province of British Columbia’s dedicated BC Energy Step Code site at: energystepcode.ca, under Resources/Publications.
ENDRESS+HAUSER CANADA: THREE IN ONE CERTIFICATION A FIRST FOR A PRIVATE COMPANY IN CANADA Designed er,
square-foot Customer Experience Centre in Burlington, Ontario for Endress+Hauser Canada will target net zero energy, the Zero Carbon Building Standard and LEED Gold through the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC). This will make Endress+Hauser, a global leader in process measurement and instrumentation, the first private company in Canada to pursue all three certifications at once. Completion is planned for the fall of 2020.
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$19.95, taxes and shipping extra. Paperback (6”x9”), 240 pages. ISBN: 9780865719255
THE RAIC AND CANADA COUNCIL FOR THE ARTS LAUNCH 2020 GOVERNOR GENERAL’S MEDALS IN ARCHITECTURE The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) and the Canada Council for the Arts invite architects to participate in the competition for the 2020 Governor General’s Medals in Architecture, one of the country’s most prestigious and coveted architectural awards. Awarded every two years, the 12 medals recognize and celebrate outstanding design in recently completed built projects by Canadian architects. Submission deadline: December 6, 2019 at 12:00 a.m. ET. Apply at https://raic.org. The call for submissions is open to all architects or team of architects who were the lead design architects. They must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada, and licensed or registered with a Canadian provincial or territorial jurisdiction. Eligible projects are those that were built in and outside of Canada and completed between January 1, 2012, and September 1, 2019. firstname.lastname@example.org
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LIVING LIBATIONS headquarters Passive House in the realms of human wellbeing and ecological responsibility
By Jim Taggart Set on a south-facing slope amid the forested hills of Haliburton, Ontario, the design
A manufacturer of organic beauty care products, Living Libations has a staff of 50 who, on completion of this project, now work in a production laboratory building with an exposed heavy timber structure and natural finishes that cre-
of the new Living Libations Headquarters
ate a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The interior hardwood plywood finish is
reflects a corporate philosophy that places
bonded with a food-grade soy-based adhesive, rather than urea formaldehyde
the highest value on nature, beauty and
(UF), which does not emit toxic air contaminants.
being. In building terms, this philosophy
The other program spaces include (on the uppermost floor), a professional
naturally led to the choice of a highly dura-
kitchen, a south-facing dining room that opens onto a 450m2 outdoor terrace, a
ble, low-energy form of construction, with
yoga room with adjoining meditation, and a light therapy solarium which opens
a strong emphasis on indoor environmental
onto a large rooftop terrace that has a panoramic view of the surrounding forest and beautiful sunsets.
quality and attractive common spaces that would have the minimum environmental impact over an extended life cycle. These
The design approach was to let the geography of the site shape and locate all built form in order to minimize the ecological impact on the site. Compasses and a solar pathfinder were used to ensure the building was oriented for maximum
criteria led in turn to the choice of a
cold season solar heat gains. The steep south-facing slope made it possible to
Passive House structure.
capture solar heat by locating the majority of windows on the south side while the concrete construction of the ground floor, earth-sheltered by the slope, created a thermal flywheel to modulate diurnal temperature fluctuations.
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New municipal building aims for Passive House Plus
By Oscar Flechas The new Valleyview Town Hall is an 800 m2 two-storey plus basement building located in Valleyview, 350Km north of Edmonton in the heart of Albertaâ€™s oil country. Despite the large seasonal fluctuations in temperature and sunlight levels at this latitude, Valleyview Town Hall is aiming to be the first Passive House certified commercial building in Alberta and the first Passive House Plus in North America. This means that on-site renewables meet 100% of the buildingâ€™s energy demand on an annual basis, a giant leap forward for a town with fewer than 2,000 residents.
The building reuses the footprint of a previous structure, minimizing site distur-
To further enhance indoor environmental quality,
bance, preserving adjacent community park space and capitalizing on solar orien-
all interior finishes, paints, adhesives, flooring and
tation. With the latter being a vital strategy in this extreme climate, the program is
composite wood products are specified to con-
organized with high-traffic working areas towards the long, naturally-lit south side
tain low amounts of volatile organic compounds
to ensure energy balancing. In the warmer months, heat gains are controlled with
(VOCs) and be free of other toxins. Beyond the
fixed shades that cut out the high angle sun.
physiological health of its employees, however, the municipality is also concerned for their psy-
In addition to its aggressive energy targets, the Passive House Standard requires
chological wellbeing. Accordingly, all workspaces
excellent indoor air quality through carefully calibrated mechanical ventilation and
and other frequently used areas are adjacent to
air recirculation systems. To maintain steady temperatures over all three levels of
operable windows that connect visually to the
the building, ventilation specifications included a mix of outdoor variable refrig-
park, while a balcony and designated outdoor sit-
erant flow (VRF) system for cooling and heating, and a high-efficiency energy
ting area ensure that the connection with nature
is not only visual but also physical.
1 Vestibule 2 Lobby 3 Reception 4 Open workstations 5 Office 6 Meeting room 7 Male wc 8 Universal wc 9 Copy room 10 Filling 11 Servic room
SABMag - FALL 2019
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SABMag - FALL 2019
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Turning Up the Heat on Energy Recovery
Read this article and take the quiz at: https://sabmagazine.com/education SABMag continuing education courses for LEED AP credential maintenance
Quiz prepared by Erika Mayer, 475 High Performance Building Supply FOURSEVENFIVE.CA
THE KEN SOBLE TOWER
TRANSFORMATION Built in 1967, the Ken Soble Tower is the oldest high-rise multi-residential building in CityHousing Hamilton’s portfolio. A local landmark with significant community value, the tower had fallen into a state of disrepair, declining occupancy and increasing costs. After considering several options including sale, rebuild, capital repair, and rehabilitation, CityHousing Hamilton opted to engage in a modernization program that would ensure long-term asset viability, and secure housing quality and indoor comfort for resident seniors while reducing the building’s environmental impact. The Passive House standard was determined to be the best means of achieving these goals, kickstarting a broader program of Passive House development for CityHousing Hamilton’s portfolio at large. While organizations in the EU and Canada’s West Coast have adopted Passive House as a target, CityHousing Hamilton is one of the first large organizations in eastern Canada to do so. At 18 storeys and more than 80,000 sq.ft., the Ken Soble Tower will be one of the largest EnerPHit certified projects in the world. The rehabilitation project will modernize 146 units of affordable seniors’ housing, while reinvigorating community spaces and outdoor gathering areas, allowing for aging-in-place and barrier-free living, and a changing climate. Slated for completion in 2020, the project will also provide residents with improved comfort and control of their indoor environments and with the ability to withstand extreme climate events into the future. As one of the most complex EnerPHit projects in the region, the design of this project required the development of a number of new strategies and processes. Lessons were learned across the architectural, structural, building envelope, mechanical and electrical disciplines, which have been identified here in an effort to support the dissemination of the Passive The Ken Soble Tower in the late 1960s and now being modernized in accordance with the Passive House EnerPHit retrofit standard.
North America’s First EnerPHit Apartment Tower
House standard in the Ontario context. LEAD ARCHITECT: ERA ARCHITECTS For lead architects and retrofit specialists ERA Architects, a highlyintegrated design process was required from the outset. To ensure that the holistic goals of Passive House were being met, an extremely high standard of coordination was adopted to the extent that even detailing decisions received inputs from a number of disciplines to ensure dynamic thermal comfort standards were being met. ERA hosted weekly collab-
By ERA Architects with Entuitive, Transsolar KlimaEngineering, JMV Consulting, Reinbold Engineering, Nemetz (S/A) & Associates.
orative design sessions, with all disciplines coming to the table to discuss shared impacts of their progress. Design solutions were assessed based on their ability to meet the stringent requirements of Passive House, and their familiarity and constructability in the local trade context.
The Ken Soble Tower Transformation is a groundbreaking project rehabilitating a post-war apartment tower in Hamilton, Ontario to the Passive House EnerPHit retrofit standard - reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 94% and laying the groundwork for the industry-wide repair and renewal projects which are urgently needed to maintain thousands of apartments across Canada.
This process required more work up front, but was rewarding and established strong teamwork from the start. With Passive House’s relative infancy in North America, ERA was also challenged in sourcing appropriate products not readily available in Canada for high-rise applications. HVAC equipment, Passive House-certified windows, and appropriate insulation to meet the effective R38 envelope requirements were some of the primary sourcing challenges. This process revealed market gaps which will likely begin to be filled as Passive House construction becomes more standard in the Canadian market. SABMag - FALL 2019
FIRE SAFETY IN TALL WOOD BUILDINGS Jim Taggart
SABMag - FALL 2019
Over the past decade, Canada has been developing regulations to promote the use of cross laminated timber (CLT) and other mass timber products, in a variety of new and larger scale applications. This has required much research and testing to establish standards for structural strength, fire performance, thermal and acoustic behaviour. Large scale testing of CLT panels has generated consistent results and assured scientists that large mass timber buildings can be designed to the standards of life safety and structural stability required by the National Building Code of Canada. Nonetheless, the perception of some municipal authorities, local fire marshals, building owners and developers does not yet comfortably differentiate between the fire performance of light wood frame structures and those made of mass timber. This same perception is evident in Europe where many Tall Wood buildings are still required to have concrete podiums, stair and elevator shafts.
The Legacy of the Chicago Fire The reason is that almost all the large cities in Europe and North America had major fires in the 19th century that resulted in changes to the local building code, reducing the permissible height of wood buildings, or prohibiting them completely. However, the fire that devastated Chicago in 1871 impacted an entire continent. Propelled by strong winds, the Chicago Fire destroyed 17,500 buildings, travelling from one to the next by igniting roof shingles, cladding, balconies and other exterior wood elements. More than 50 insurance companies declared bankruptcy and in response, the city of Chicago introduced a new bylaw requiring all new structures to be of â€˜fireproofâ€™ construction. Loadbearing masonry became the default construction method, but within a decade, the emergence of reinforced concrete offered engineers and architects the possibility of high-rise structures with narrow columns and expansive glazing â€“ a new aesthetic with instant and widespread appeal. With few exceptions, traditional timber building methods were eclipsed.
SABMag - FALL 2019
Cover: Canada's Earth Tower. Multi-storey winter gardens and selectively exposed wood structure bring nature into the tower form. Architect: Perkins and Will. Above: Earth Sciences Building. One of the largest panelized wood buildings in North America at its time of construction, and a precedent for future mass timber projects. Architect: Perkins and Will. Photo Credit: Martin Tessler. Right: Terrace House. Tall hybrid wood tower with flanking terraces that complement the Evergreen Building. Architect: Shigeru Ban. Credit: PortLiving.
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SABMag - FALL 2019
ACCESSIBILITY The Rick Hansen Foundation
BECOME A LEADER Prioritizing accessibility in design is a way to establish you and your organization as a leader in both innovation and social responsibility. Universal Design demonstrates a people-first approach, one that is able to meet a variety of needs for years to come. The thing about Universal Design, says VP Access and Inclusion at the Rick Hansen Foundation Brad McCannell, is that “it’s invisible.” Those who don’t have a disability may not notice that there’s good colour contrast on the floor for navigation with a vision disability, or that the elevator has wide doors to accommodate a wheelchair. Individuals with disabilities, says McCannell, might not notice it either, which is a good thing: it means they didn’t have to overcome a challenge to get from A to B. Imagine knowing that your design positively impacts the way millions of Canadians navigate the built environment.
Even if an individual doesn’t have a disability, they are
1. The Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™ uses a set of standards for the built environment that takes mobility, vision, and hearing disabilities into consideration.
BY: THE RICK HANSEN FOUNDATION More than 6 million Canadians aged 15 and over identify as having a disability, and this number is growing as our population ages. Are our buildings built in a way to support their needs, now and in the future? Not really. While building codes play an important role, we still have a long way to go to ensure people of all abilities have access to the spaces where we live, work, learn, and play. Here’s why this should matter to you.
more likely to live somewhere or support a business if they feel their values are in the right place. Plus, nearly 50% of Canadian adults say they have or have experienced a permanent or temporary disability, or live with someone who has . If they haven’t yet, chances are they will, and being prepared for the future gives you a leg up over your competition. This helps explain why over 2/3rd of Canadians believe all new buildings should be universally accessible. A 2019 Angus Reid Institute public opinion poll found: - 67% of Canadians are concerned about future mobility challenges - 70% say new buildings should be universally
THE BUSINESS CASE
No matter the type of project you are designing, making it accessible is good
- 30% (9 million adults) consider accessibility when
business sense. Building owners and operators want to know they are working
deciding which business to visit
with someone who can maximize the number of people who can enter their facility. Designing for accessibility helps you do this, and that advantage helps
A ROADMAP TO ACCESSIBILITY
you stand out from others.
We all know accessible design is important, but with such a variety of regulations and opinions, knowing
For example, if it’s a residential building, it will appeal to a greater variety of
where to start can be a challenge in itself.
potential tenants or buyers, resulting in fewer vacancies and quicker sales. If it’s an office building there is easier access to a wider pool of qualified employees
The Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™
and applicants. And if it’s a business, more people can access the storefront and
(RHFAC) program was created for industry to fill the
spend their money there.
gap between local building codes and the real needs of users. It offers an approach that is used nationally,
Not only is accessibility a human rights issue, it is an economic imperative.
providing consistent ratings across the country.
A 2018 report from the Conference Board of Canada shows that the positive impact accessibility can have on the economy should not be ignored:
The program uses a set of standards for the built envi-
- people with physical disabilities make up a large and growing consumer
ronment that takes mobility, vision, and hearing disabili-
group—14.3% of consumer spending, or $164 billion per year.
ties into consideration. Designated RHFAC Professionals
- Improvements to workplace access would allow 550,000 Canadians with
use a rating scale to identify barriers in both designs
disabilities to work more hours, increasing GDP by $16.8 billion by 2030.
and buildings on their level of meaningful accessibility.
SABMag - FALL 2019
IS AN EXCELLENT CHOICE FOR ANY GREEN BUILDING PROJECT
Products certiﬁed to SFI are recognized by many leading green building rating programs around the world like Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and Green Globes.
Using wood products from responsibly managed forests is key to any green building project. Third-party forest certification standards, like the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI), are a proof-point that wood comes from responsibly managed forests that have been managed for multiple environmental, social and economic values — today and into the future. Architects and builders are turning to products certified to the SFI Standard to meet their green building needs. Learn more at: sfiprogram.org/green-building
Readers can now access SABMag on their phones and tablets through iTunes, Pocketmags and on Google Play. These versions have identical content to that in the print magazine, but include links in the articles to related information.
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Charter Telecom Headquarters
With this corporate philosophy, the companyâ€™s primary objective was to create a new headquarters building that would provide its employees with the best possible work environment. To realize this goal, the company was willing to embrace two non-traditional approaches to building design that are still in their infancy in Canada: Passive House and mass wood construction. Both these approach-
Passive House with hybrid construction achieves highest quality environment for employees By Graeme Verhulst
es were made more challenging by the restricted site, which quickly became the main driver of design. On the narrow, 20-metre wide lot, the entire width would have been taken up by a conventional surface parking arrangement with a central drive aisle and two rows of cars, while the ramp to an underground garage would have
Founded 25 years ago, Charter Telecom is a high-tech company that builds, maintains and operates secure, highperformance communications networks and data centre infrastructure for large public and private sector clients around the world. In a sector where employee retention is an ongoing challenge, Charter views its workforce as a family. Many of its staff of over 100 have been with the company for two decades or more.
SABMag - FALL 2019
reduced the number of stalls that could have been accommodated. Instead, the decision was made to minimize the ground floor footprint of the building and to bridge the upper three floors over a drive aisle and single row of surface parking. Zoning required a six metre setback on the west leaving a narrow strip on the east side for shear walls to come all the way to the ground. In a high seismic zone, the resulting lateral forces could not be resolved using light wood frame construction, so a hybrid solution was required.
The Heights, 388 Skeena Street in Vancouver, B.C., is currently Canada’s largest Passive House building
PHC Canada’s first Passive House certified window Manufactured in Delta, BC, and used extensively in single family and multi family Passive House projects throughout the Pacific Northwest Recent projects include: • Charter Telecom Headquarters, Victoria, BC • Valleyview Townhall, Valleyview, AB • The Heights, Vancouver, BC
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www.euroline-windows.com SABMag - FALL 2019
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
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SABMag - FALL 2019
The winners of the 2019 Canadian Green Building Awards
The Awards presentation of the 2019 Canadian Green Building Awards, the annual program of Sustainable Architecture & Building [SABMag], took place in Vancouver on May 27, 2019 where the winning firms were recognized. We especially thank our sponsors who make the Awards possible.
ARCHITECTURAL CATEGORY SPONSORS
1. Muhammad Kashif (right) of Category Sponsor Mitsubishi Electric Sales of Canada presents the Commercial/Industrial [Large] Award for the Evolv1 Building to Dr. Andrea Frisque of Stantec.
2. Jennifer McGill (right), of National Sponsor Masonite Architectural, presents the Institutional [Large] Award for the Okanagan College Trades Renewal and Expansion Project to Michael Leckman of Diamond Schmitt Architects Inc. 3. On behalf of National Sponsor The Canadian Precast Prestressed Concrete Institute, juror Ron Kato (centre) presents the Commercial/Industrial [Small] Award for the Sechelt Water Resource Centre to Brian Wakelin (left) and Robert Drew of Public Architecture + Communication.
4. Ron Kato (right), representing Category Sponsor Enbridge Gas Inc., presents the Existing Building Upgrade Award for the Wellington Building Rehabilitation to David Clusiau of NORR Architects and Engineers. 5. On behalf of National Sponsor, the Canadian Precast Prestressed Concrete Institute, juror Lisa Bate (left) presents the Technical Award for the City of Calgary Composting Facility to Megan Leslie of Stantec.
7. On behalf of Category Sponsor Inline Fiberglass, juror Lisa Bate (left) presents the Residential Building [Large] Award for the Duke Apartment Building to Mark Ostry (second left) and Russell Acton (far right) of Acton Ostry Architects Inc. Pete Edgar of building owner Edgar Development Corp. is second right.
Visit https://sabmagazine.com/ awards/winners for more details.
6 Jennifer McGill (centre) of National Sponsor Masonite Architectural presents the Institutional [Small] Award for the Radium Hot Springs Community Hall and Library to Shelley Craig and Jordan Edmonds of Urban Arts Architecture Inc.
For details on sponsoring the 2020 Canadian Green Building Awards contact email@example.com.
8. Representing National Sponsor the Canadian Precast Prestressed Concrete Institute, juror Ron Kato (right) presents the Existing Building Upgrade Award for the Bank of Canada Renewal to Zeina Elali (left) of Perkins+Will and Colleen Sullivan of the Bank of Canada. 9. Lindsay Oster (left), principal of Prairie Architects Inc. receives the Institutional [Small] Award for the Building Blocks on Balmoral at Great West Life from Jennifer McGill of National Sponsor Masonite Architectural.
SABMag - FALL 2019
MAKING BUILDING PERFORMANCE A SELLING POINT, AND MOVING ON FROM THE GLASS TOWER By Richard Witt, Executive Principal, Quadrangle & Michelle Xuereb, Director of Innovation, Quadrangle
Sustainable building design is not a new concept. With the development and implementation of LEED in the early 1990s, sustainability became mainstream but has struggled to effect real change in the way we think about building performance, requirements or aesthetics. Economics and sustainable building design are at odds – sustainability is an extra cost, weighed against budget and relative value. The Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat concluded in their study Downtown High-Rise vs. Suburban Low-Rise Building that recently completed buildings significantly underperform in comparison to their counterparts from 50 years ago. The days of the glass skyscraper are coming to an end. Passive systems direct the way forward, as opposed to compensating for inefficiency with active systems.
Passive solutions allow us to both mitigate and adapt to changing weather. Based on the Climate Driver Study completed for the City of Toronto, we know that days are getting hotter, there are more of them and there are more of them strung together in heat waves. We are also experiencing larger storms, with heavier amounts of precipitation falling at once. The main issue we will have with 1
our buildings is overheating and flash flooding – both in combination with power outages. This again reinforces the need for passive design solutions.
1. In Quadrangle’s project “St. Clair Village” a punched window aesthetic has been designed to have window shapes and sizes which reduce the window-to-wall ratio and are also slightly different to respond to their aspect (north, south, east, west).
These power outages generally happen on our hottest and coldest days as a
Buildings are the key contributor and solution to climate change mitigation and adaptation.
The City of Toronto recommends that people be able to function independently
According to the latest inventory release (2017)
result of people cranking their AC or heating. The higher the total effective R-value of the building, the better they are able to maintain the indoor air temperature in the case of extreme temperatures without power.
for a minimum of 72 hours without power. In a residential building, maintaining indoor temperature is key to allowing people to shelter in place within their
by The City of Toronto, 52% of GHG emissions in
Toronto come from buildings, predominantly from
• At a basic level, a building is meant to shelter people from the weather – to
burning natural gas to heat indoor spaces and water.
keep people warm when it’s cold and cool when it’s hot. Glass is a very poor
Consequently, buildings must also be a climate change
insulator, leaving residents feeling physically uncomfortable and paying high
solution. The City of Toronto recognizes this in its Zero
Emissions Building Framework, which is why the
• As architects, the best thing you can do is reduce the amount of glass and
Toronto Green Standard (TGS) has us on a path to net
increase the amount of well-insulated walls. We understand that keeping win-
zero buildings by 2030. What about the code? There
dows to about 40% of the wall area is the single most effective way to reduce
is a plan to move Toronto to net zero by 2030, but it
the energy footprint of a building. Real walls with windows may seem old fash-
is not clear, given the current political climate, whether
ioned, but they don’t need to be. Our focus is on creating a thoughtful, well-
this proposal will be executed. Passive design solu-
designed building with an aesthetic that lends itself to real walls and windows.
tions increase durability and climate change resilience
• Unlike glass, insulation slows down the movement of heat. This allows you to
while lowering energy usage, embodied energy from
hold onto heat during winter, making people more comfortable and more likely
maintenance, and GHG emissions.
to actually use the spaces at the perimeter of their unit.
SABMag - FALL 2019
To learn more, visit SavingsByDesign.ca
Dig deeper into sustainability and earn incentives for your building project. North York Women’s Shelter,
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By participating in the Enbridge Savings by Design Workshop, we were able to discuss real costs of choices, both for construction and long-term operating. The overall building massing and layout was set by very complex program and siting restrictions, so the areas in which we benefited greatly were in rethinking storm water management on site, window type and performance, exterior wall assembly, and healthy materials. The mechanical engineering part was also indispensable and so instructive; highlighting important and easy changes, discussing more complex upgrades, and understanding the long-term and performance impacts of our systems, both as climate change worsens and as building systems need replacement and upgrades. The Enbridge charrette provided the perfect opportunity to make clear and informed choices that brought our project to the next level of energy, health and operating performance. It saved construction and operating costs and made for a healthier building. — Chantal Cornu, LGA Architectural Partners
In 2018, Evergreen Brick Works was in the midst of an ambitious effort to transform the historic Kiln Building – and make it carbon neutral by using the right energy at the right time. Early in the process, Enbridge led a Savings by Design workshop for the project. On a fast track project, this provided a tremendous opportunity for the integrated design team to reflect on the early trajectory set in the project, and obtain informed perspectives from invited experts on enhancing it. The workshop also provided a spring board to brainstorm how the Kiln Building project could serve as a catalyst to transform the entire Brick Works campus to be carbon neutral, which has been a longstanding vision of Evergreen. The Savings by Design workshop struck a great balance between both blue sky and detail level thinking. It was informative, fruitful, and an overall positive experience. We’d highly recommend Enbridge’s Savings by Design workshop program for anyone thinking about making more sustainable buildings. — Drew Adams, Associate, LGA Architectural Partners
SABMag - FALL 2019
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SABMag - FALL 2019
2. and 3. Residences at Portland (left) and CG Tower (right), both in Toronto, have building envelopes which will improve building performance. Better performance is not usually part of the real estate sales campaign, however, this information could, and would, be more available if sellers knew it was important to buyers.
Changing codes, standards, and their implications (GHG, TEDI, EUI).
2. Encourage energy modelling using both current and future
If there is a problem with this building design, why does it persist? That’s
3. Inspire clients with design ideas that integrate passive design
a tough question for a lot of people. All-glass residential buildings have
solutions into the initial concept.
been the industry standard for a long time. These buildings are driven first and foremost by capital costs and ROI to the developer. They are cheap
In Quadrangle’s project “St. Clair Village” an evolved punched
and fast to build.
window aesthetic has been designed to have window shapes and sizes which not only reduce the window-to-wall ratio but are
Though the Ontario energy code is quite progressive, there are holes in
also slightly different to respond to their aspect (north, south,
the energy modelling requirements that allow the real impacts of thermal
bridging to be missed. This means that window-wall buildings with high window-to-wall ratio (WWR) have continued to meet local codes and
What we can encourage purchasers to do.
standards to date. In the City of Toronto, this is intended to change with
Marketers focus on selling purchasers a lifestyle, but no discus-
the introduction of energy modelling based on absolute values that will
sion takes place about building performance. This is a major
be required for all buildings by the TGS in January, 2020.
issue; we need to educate and empower purchasers to have these conversations. Here are some things we can encourage
We will be required to provide three absolute values – greenhouse gas
people to ask:
emission intensity (GHGi), energy use intensity (EUI), and thermal energy
1. What is the reputation of the developer? Do they have a repu-
demand (TEDI). For a long time, energy modelling has allowed us to
tation for building quality, durable buildings?
trade off high-efficiency mechanical solutions for building envelope.
2. Will this be considered a high-performance building? Is it pre-
These three metrics are intended to change this and balance out decision
dicted to perform better than the current energy code and, if so,
making, ensuring that building envelope is measured both in conjunction
by how much?
with and independently of the mechanical systems. The TEDI will look
3. Is there an estimate of the utility bills available?
at thermal energy load independently of the heating source, so will look
4. Will my unit be able to maintain livable temperatures for a
at balancing heat losses and gains, predominantly through the build-
minimum of 72 hours as recommended by the City of Toronto?
ing envelope and also including ventilation air. GHGi will drive decision
5. Has a durability report been created for the project, and is it
making towards fuel sources with lower emission factors. In Ontario, this
possible to review the predicted maintenance schedule for the
means electricity over natural gas sources.
What we should be doing as professionals.
Asking these questions will prompt a change in the way that
We can build arguments for developer reputation, for risks to developers
buildings are marketed. All three of the Quadrangle projects
with respect to climate change resilience and adaptability, etc., but mar-
illustrated, Residences at Portland, St Clair Village Condos and
kets, such as Toronto, are extremely competitive, and developers want to
CG Tower have a building envelope which will increase building
keep their competitive advantage as much as possible. The message we
performance and ultimately reduce purchase costs, but mar-
constantly encounter is that they would be willing to build high-perfor-
keters haven’t found that narrative increases sales, and better
mance buildings if that is what their competitors were doing because it
performance isn’t a part of the sales campaign. This information
would put them on a level playing field.
could, and would, be more available if sellers knew it was important to buyers.
If the market and codes are not demanding a better-quality building, why would they spend more to build one? As professionals, we have a public duty to be having these conversations so that our clients and purchasers make the right decisions. A few things we can do: 1. Have the tough conversations and advocate for building performance in
Richard Witt is Executive Principal, and Michelle Xuereb is Director of Innovation, both of Quadrangle in Toronto.
your client’s language – ROI, sales, purchaser satisfaction and risk;
SABMag - FALL 2019
´ REGISTER NOW ´ https://sabmagazine.com/awards/register/
FOR THE 2020 CANADIAN GREEN BUILDING AWARDS
THE NATIONAL PROGRAM OF SUSTAINABLE ARCHITECTURE & BUILDING MAGAZINE
The Awards recognize excellence in the design and execution of all types of sustainably-designed, high-performance Canadian residential and non-residential buildings and interiors, both new and renovated. Projects need not be certified under a green building rating system. Register now to receive an Entry Kit.
• Deadline for submissions / date limite pour soumettre vos projets March 6, 2020 / 6 mars 2020 • Judging date / délibération des juges March 13, 2020 / 13 mars 2020 • Winners announcement / dévoilement des gagnants June 1, 2020 / 1 juin 2020
ENTRY CATEGORIES - ELECTRONIC SUBMISSIONS ACCEPTED 1. Residential [small] 2. Residential [large] 3. Commercial/Industrial [small]
4. Commercial/industrial [large] 5. Institutional [small] 6. Institutional [large]
7. Mixed Use 8. Existing Building Upgrade 9. Interior Design
RECOGNITION - Winners announced June 1, 2020 in Toronto prior to the start of the CaGBC National Conference - Winning projects published in the Summer issue of SABMag which is also distributed to all attendees of the CaGBC National Conference - Winning projects published in the SABMag web site, www.sabmagazine.com, and in the SABMag monthly e-News - All projects submitted will be considered for publishing in SABMag and the CaGBC FOCUS publications
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SABMag - FALL 2019
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SABMag - FALL 2019
Passive House on an upward curve Interview with Rob Bernhardt, CEO of Passive House Canada Rob works to advance building energy efficiency. A certified Passive House consultant and the developer of several certified Passive House projects, Rob is familiar with the economic and social advantages of high-performance buildings.
Their momentum and enthusiasm has given us the privilege of assisting all levels of government in building policy development, the ability to support the growth of a national membership of over 1,100 members (in eight provinces and two territories) and deliver hundreds of courses, with over 5,000 registrations across Canada. This appetite for a higher standard of building bridged partnerships resulting in the launch of Canada’s first Zero Emissions
What is a Passive House Building and how does it work in Canada??
Building Exchange in Vancouver and a successful inaugural
Passive House (Passivhaus) is considered to be the most rigorous vol-
national conference with over 350 delegates attending each year.
untary energy-based standard in the design and construction industry today. They consume up to 90 percent less heating and cooling energy than conventional buildings. It is recognized internationally as the proven best way to build for comfort, affordability and energy efficiency of residential, institutional and commercial buildings, through all stages of design, construction, and livability.
Why do you think people are making the change to Passive House buildings? While the initial driver is, of course, environmental and the common goal to mitigate climate change, this alone does not catalyze market transformation, represent the motivation of everyone involved, or simplify the process of managing change.
The Passive House approach works because it’s a pragmatic combina-
For many, the primary motivation is a desire to have better
tion of applied building science and economics. Designs and compo-
buildings. The unparalleled comfort, health, durability, resilience
nents vary to suit the local climate, enabling comparable levels of com-
and affordability of buildings offering Passive House levels of
fort, hygiene and performance in varied climates. All Passive House
performance are reason enough to make the choice. Affordable
buildings are designed using detailed energy modelling software,
housing advocates may focus on the reduced costs of owner-
which allows the design team modify the architecture and specify the
ship, operation and utility costs to tenants, homeowners on the
combination of insulation and components required to bring a building
comfort, while absolutely everyone craves a constant supply of
to the required performance standard in their own climate zone.
filtered fresh outdoor air.
Why was Passive House Canada created?
Some professionals, developers and trades are attracted by
Passive House Canada was incorporated by practitioners wanting to
the quality of work such buildings entail and enjoy the pride of
transform Canada’s buildings, making the multiple benefits of high per-
workmanship. Others know high performance building regula-
formance buildings the norm. We started with few high-performance
tions are coming and are looking for a competitive advantage,
resources in Canada but have ramped up resources through education-
a market differentiator, in establishing their company brand.
al services, events, advocacy and communications over the few years
Increasingly, some are simply responding to the developing
we have existed. With time Canada’s policy, regulatory and incentive
market for Passive House buildings and their components, which
environment has become very support of Passive House as the level of
they know will grow.
building efficiency required for Canada to meet its Paris commitments become apparent.
Why do you feel Canada is winning in the change to Passive House building?
Why do you think the movement has been successful so far?
During our 2018 conference, the federal government took the
The successes that we have experienced are directly attributable to
opportunity to say it is probable that the final tier of the Net
the dedication of industry professionals and elected officials who are
Zero Energy Ready Code will be very close to Passive House
passionate about sustainability.
standards. This is a significant win for Canada, and with recent budget support we can see our national buildings strategy taking root across cities and provinces, nationwide. We know our role at PHC will change and likely diminish as building codes and standards approach Passive House performance levels and we can’t think of a better reason to become redundant. Taking a “mission first” approach enables more rapid progress, facilitating collaboration with industry and consumers in addition to government. We can best achieve our mission by collaborating with aligned groups and individuals, and we invite you to do the same.
Dik Tiy Independent Living Facility, Smithers, British Columbia.
SABMag - FALL 2019
SABMag - FALL 2019
Uniting the house of design with the field of construction Uniting the house of design with the field of construction
University of Ottawa Learning Centre EQUITONE [tectiva], VIVIX phenolic, Fiandre Porcelain and TcLips™ Architect: HDR MaRS Building Photo: Curt Clayton
Photo: Shai Gil B+H Architects
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Contact us today at email@example.com excellence in creative design possibilities, bringing imagination to life. Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org EngineeredAssemblies.com | 1 866 591 7021 | #brilliantbuildings EngineeredAssemblies.com | 1 866 591 7021 Contact us today at email@example.com EngineeredAssemblies.com | 1 866 591 7021 | #brilliantbuildings Aluminum façade
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EA beneﬁts from twenty years of industry experience. From detailing to ﬁeld installation practicality; EA provides a keen eye on design and a strong handle on the limiting factors of the ﬁeld. EA SYSTEMS
• Thermally Broken TcLip Subsystem EA beneﬁts from twenty years of industry • Fastener Hidden System (HF) experience. From detailing to ﬁeld • Ventilated Rear Rain Screen Systems installation practicality; EA provides a keen (RVRS) eye on design and a strong handle on the • systems work EAwith all EA Façade limiting factors of the ﬁeld. lines.
EA SYSTEMS EA HIGH-PERFORMING FAÇADE LINES • Thermally Broken TcLip Subsystem • Fibre Cement Equitone façade • Fastener Hidden System (HF) • Natural Wood Parklex façade • Ventilated Rear Rain Screen Systems • PorcelainFiandre façade (RVRS) • Solid Phenolic Vivix façade • systems work EAwith all EA Façade • Ceramic façade Tonality lines. • Zinc, Copper, Corten, Stainless Steel & Aluminum façade EA HIGH-PERFORMING FAÇADE LINES • Daylighting solutions CPI • • • • • •
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SABMag - FALL 2019