Most Sustainable Buildings in Canada & Vancouver Condos
The term going green is a broad concept that entails more than just consuming organic foods and using natural fuels. Today, even buildings are made to be as sustainable as possible. Canada is among the top states having already started integrating this concept into the country. The green building council Canada has adopted an adapted version of LEED meant to rate apartment buildings on how green or environmentally sustainable they are.
What is a green building you ask? This generally refers to buildings that are constructed following a sustainable design and processes that are resource-efficient and environmentally responsible throughout the building’s life-cycle. This entails all the activities carried including designing, siting, construction, building renovation, and demotion. For a building to be named green, it has to be assessed to determine its overall impact on humans and the natural environment.
Sustainable Buildings Canada & Vancouver Condos
According to Richard Morrison, Canada has the highest number of these kinds of buildings and here are a few of the sustainable buildings and condos in Vancouver Canada.
- Gulf Islands National Parks
This operation center found at Gulf Island was the first building to acquire a sustainable rating by LEED back in 2016. Why does it qualify as a green building? It uses harvested rainwater and uses for some activities around the building such as flushing the toilet. That is not all; it also uses solar energy. The building operated under natural power which is great for the environment at large. In this case, the building qualifies due to its energy and resource efficiency.
- VanDusen Botanical Garden
This building has been seen winning awards due to its sustainable design. Also, it was the first building to apply for Living Building Challenge Recognition in Canada. Why does it qualify as a sustainable building? It uses rainwater from the roof. VanDusen Botanical does not depend on boreholes for water production and treats all black water on site. It has also shown great support in energy and resources efficiency. The building's roof is sustainable too.
- Dockside Green
This building is LEED certified. It has shown its sustainability through its biomass gasification plant which is used for generation of gas and heating. Energy efficiency is among the features of sustainable building material, and this makes this building to qualify for it. Moreover, the building reuses its sewage, and that is not all, it has proven its resource efficiency through its high-efficiency showers, faucets and car-sharing programs. It is also possible for the building's residents to control heat even when they are not in the rooms, via the internet.
- The U of C’s Energy Environment Experiential and learning building
This building has been rated among the energy efficient buildings, and it is verified by LEED due to its sustainable design. It saves energy with the help of its sustainable features such as the use of ventilation for the natural light, solar shutters and earth tubes. The building has low-plumbing fixtures and collects rainwater, reuses it for some activities around such as flushing toilets. Both its design and materials qualify to be sustainable.
- TD Center
All the buildings making up this Center were certified by LEED Platinum back in 2015. They make up the largest complex in North America to be LEED rated. How is it sustainable? It has a living roof, its cooling system depends on water from Lake Ontario, and even better, the building has integrated a system to measure soil moisture thus minimizing water usage. It is thereof both resources and energy efficient.
Let’s have a look at some of the terms that you are likely to come across in this field and what makes a building to qualify to be green or sustainable.
Sustainable Building Material Canada
People have different ideas about green building materials. The truth is, any building material that helps the builder to reach the goal of sustainability by minimizing any harmful environmental impact can be termed as green. For starter, the content has to be resource efficiency. What does this mean? Go for;
- Natural material - These materials require minimum processing thus little energy used.
- Locally available material – this removes the need for transportation thus minimum greenhouse emissions. These include grass since it can be grown in Canada.
- Reusable or recyclable –these include wood, metals, and glass. This means that at the end of their lives, or if the building is demolished, they can still be used.
- Material made of recycled content – these include wood-plastic composite, paper-Crete among others.
- Also, the building should be energy efficient. This means any component that contributes to minimum energy consumption or using renewable energy such as;
- Solar hot water heating
- Solar panel system
5. Wind turbines
The other quality of green building materials is those that enhance the indoor air quality. This means that they are;
- Moisture resistant
- Minimum chemical emission
- Requires a healthy maintenance technology
Sustainable Building Design Canada
The design used for the building's construction has to put into account the building's entire life’s cycle from creation to demolition. The designers have to consider a design that requires energy embodied material and a design that maximizes natural resources. The architects are expected to find a plan that allows the building to use natural energy such as through natural ventilation, solar heating, and thermal mass cooling.
Green Building Grants Canada
According to Richard Morrison Realtor, This is one of the reasons that have made Canada be at the top for states with sustainable buildings. People can get grants or incentives if they wish to make their buildings or businesses more environmentally friendly. They give financial assistance to people who want to improve their level of production or activities to be greener and efficient. How exciting is that?
Green Building Council Canada
This is an organization that aims at transforming the environment into a more sustainable future. Its goals are to change the industry standards, advocating or green buildings, providing the best design guidelines and developing tools to helps its members to incorporate sustainable construction design and practices.
You do not have to wake up every day to frustrations after seeing how much you have spent on energy bills trying to keep your house warm or cold or on water keeping up with cleanliness. You can save money by switching to cheaper and environmental friendly to keep you from breaking to sweat. Emulate these buildings and make your home friendlier.