TORONTO, Feb. 25, 2014 /CNW/ - The new Toronto office of the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario (ETFO) has officially received LEED Platinum Certification, the highest environmental standard possible.
The four-storey building is the first purpose-built structure in Toronto to achieve Platinum status from LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) which sets international standards for green buildings worldwide.
The new office also achieved a Canadian first in geothermal heating and cooling, one which has opened up the possibility of retrofitting older buildings with geothermal systems. Whereas drilling to sink geothermal 'columns' was only possible before construction began on new buildings, ETFO's building partners used new technology to bore down 50 storeys from the underground parking garage after a major part of the office had been constructed.
The technology used to achieve this 'first' means that older buildings can now be retrofitted with geothermal energy. The system has achieved a 71% reduction in heating and cooling energy for ETFO, and it also shortened the construction time period.
"As educators, we are driven to lead by example. That is why we wanted our office to be a model, and lead in terms of its environmental construction and footprint," said ETFO President Sam Hammond.
ETFO partnered with KPMB Architects and Bird Construction, as well as Fēnix Energy for the geo-exchange installation. A green roof, daylight motion sensors to adjust lighting levels, and solar shades to reduce solar heat gain are other features designed to allow for a workplace that heats, cools, and provides fresh air at a fraction of the usual costs.
The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 76,000 elementary public school teachers and education professionals across the province and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.
SOURCE: Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
For further information: Valerie Dugale, ETFO Media Relations: Cell: 416-948-0195, [email protected]