Canadian Consulting Engineer

U of T Passive House student residence moves forward

June 27, 2020

U of T Scarborough Passive House student residence

Rendering courtesy Handel Architects.

The University of Toronto (U of T) has awarded a design-build contract for a new Passive House (PH) student residence building at its Scarborough campus to construction firm Pomerleau. The facility has been in the planning stages since 2017.

Conceptualized for optimal energy consumption, the 265,000-sf, 746-bed facility will break ground this summer at 330 Ellesmere Road—replacing a parking lot—and is expected to be completed by the 2023/2024 academic year. Throughout the process, building information modelling (BIM) technology will be used to maximize precision in material use and energy efficiency planning.

“We are very proud to be partnering with U of T Scarborough for the delivery of this building, which is set to be one of the most eco-efficient in the country,” says Patrick Stiles, vice-president (VP) and regional manager for Pomerleau.

The owner’s design team includes Core Architects and Handel Architects, while Pomerleau’s project team includes IBI Group (architecture), Exp (structural), MCW (electrical, mechanical) and RDH Building Science (enclosure).

“RDH will be running energy models to check we meet PH criteria,” explains Micahel Faustini, senior project manager with Pomerleau. “Compared to typical buildings, you have to pay very close attention to the details of the envelope, including thermal bridging and air vapour barriers.”

The PH standard ensures a building requires very little energy for heating and cooling, making conventional furnaces and air-conditioning systems obsolete.



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