Canadian Consulting Engineer

Impact of LEED certification grows

September 25, 2006
By Canadian Consulting Engineer

A number of LEED "firsts" have been announced recently. (LEED is a certification system for green buildings; the ac...

A number of LEED “firsts” have been announced recently. (LEED is a certification system for green buildings; the acronym stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.)
Read Jones Christoffersen are the structural engineers for the first building to obtain LEED Gold Certification at the University of Victoria in B.C. The Island Medical Program Building is a 45,000 square foot structure designed on a grid that is multi-functional and adaptable for future changing uses. The building has rainwater collectors on the exterior that feed into water features on the site, and a “floating stair ” on the exterior to encourage the occupants to use the staircases instead of the elevators. The architects are Chernoff Thompson Architects.
Canada’s first LEED-certified church was opened on September 20 in Toronto. St. Gabriel’s Catholic Church on Sheppard Avenue was designed under the auspices of the “Greening Sacred Spaces” program, an initiative of an multi-faith environmental organization called “Faith & the Common Good.” St. Gabriel’s green features include a solar wall on the south side, and a “living wall” of vegetation and running water that will purify the air in the sanctuary.
The Toronto-area Greening Sacred Spaces program is hoping to promote energy conservation in the approximately 1,000 faith community buildings in the Greater Toronto Area.
In B.C. a similar initiative to make places of worship more environmentally friendly is under way at the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster which has done energy audits on 25 buildings and is now renovating four.
In Quebec, Proment Corporation has unveiled details of a residential high-rise building to be developed on the southern tip of Ile-des-Soeurs in Montreal. The developers announced they are having the building designed to obtain the first LEED certification in Quebec for this type of building.


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