Canadian Consulting Engineer

University of Toronto research centre has unusual double-skin wall

The University of Toronto has officially opened another new building on its downtown campus. The Terrence Donnelly ...

November 9, 2005   Canadian Consulting Engineer

The University of Toronto has officially opened another new building on its downtown campus. The Terrence Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research adjoins the Medical Sciences complex near Queen’s Park and was officially opened on November 3.<br>
Up to 400 researchers and faculty will work in the building. They will include members of the faculties of Medicine, Pharmacy and the Department of Applied Science and Engineering. The centre will foster collaboration and interdisciplinary research, furthering the success of the Human Genome Project.<br>
The $105 million building was partly funded by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, an independent corporation created by the Government of Canada. Stantec was project manager, with Architects Alliance and Behnisch, Behnisch & Partner as architects.
Engineering firms involved include H.H. Angus & Associates (mechanical and electrical), Yolles Partnership (structural), BA Consulting Group (traffic), Quinn Dressel Associates (condition study), Shaheen & Peaker (soils). Other consulting firms were Flad & Associates (laboratories), Arencon (life safety), Curran McCabe Ravindran Ross (costing).<br>
The 10-storey, 20,500-square metre facility was designed with cast-in-place concrete and glass cladding. One “green” feature is its double glass facade that provides natural and passive ventilation for researchers’ offices. The double-facade is becoming a common building feature in Europe but is relatively unknown in Canada. As well, three-storey high gardens connect every third floor, planted with trees as high as 12 metres. Another soaring atrium connects the building to the adjoining buildings.<br>
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