Canadian Consulting Engineer

Striking design wins competition at U of T Scarborough campus

A design-build team of Diamond Schmitt Architects with Ellis Don has just won a design competition for a new Environmental Science and Chemistry Building at the University of Toronto's Scarborough Campus.

September 17, 2013   Canadian Consulting Engineer

A design-build team of Diamond Schmitt Architects with Ellis Don has just won a design competition for a new Environmental Science and Chemistry Building at the University of Toronto’s Scarborough Campus.

Read Jones Christoffersen are the structural engineers, Smith and Andersen are the mechanical-electrical engineers, and MMM Group are civil engineering consultants.

The 110,000 sq. ft., $52.5-million building is on a ravine site along Military Trail, adjacent to the Instructional Centre, which opened in 2011.

The new Environmental Science building facade has sunshades of varying depths to enliven the facade, and combines curtain wall and masonry in an organic built form that echoes “the visual effect of a wind pattern on sand.”

Arranged around a skylit “forum,” the laboratories are on five floors and have abundant daylight, open sightlines, and are designed using a modular design to allow for the changing nature of research and methods.

The building is targeting LEED Gold certification. Sustainable features include a geo-exchange system and an earth tube to supply 100% fresh air to the administrative wing. The high performance curtain wall has unique fritted glazing to minimize heat gain. All light fixtures are LEDs.

Donald Schmitt, principal of Diamond Schmitt Architects, said the building “will be a landmark for excellence that will further strengthen UTSC’s rapidly growing campus and academic community.”

Groundbreaking will be in early October, and with a fast-track schedule, the building is scheduled to open in July 2015.


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