When we plan for new buildings, we set out to meet and exceed sustainability standards set out by various levels of government.
For new building construction, GVHS uses Passive House methodologies. This includes building systems and solutions that are not common in standard construction practices. Some of these additions include constructing robust building envelopes, additional glazing on windows, highly efficient mechanical systems, and reducing embodied carbon in the selection of building materials.
A percentage of vehicle parking stalls will be provided with EV charging stations, with the remaining stalls having provisions put in place for future stations. All secure bicycle parking will be provided with outlets for charging electric bicycles.
An example of our building practices can be found in our plans for the redevelopment of our site at 2558 Quadra Street. Step 3 for Part 3 buildings of the BC Energy Step Code is being targeted for building efficiency. This means the building will achieve a minimum of 50% increased energy efficiency compared to conventional buildings built under the BC Building Code. This is accomplished through a robust continuous building envelope design and highly efficient heat recovery ventilators (HRV) to service the building. In addition, leading edge air source heat pumps (ASHP) are being selected as an alternative system to sourcing heat for domestic hot water (DHW) with electric boilers. This will eliminate the need for a traditional natural gas condensing boiler system. There will be no natural gas connection onsite. This means there will be no greenhouse gas emissions, and the building will have nearly zero carbon emissions.
No air conditioning will be provided on site. The building will be passively cooled through exhaust provided from the air source heat pumps.
In addition to the above, conduits and structural systems are being put in place on the roof of the building to allow for the future implementation of solar panels in order to reduce the building’s impact on the electrical grid.