Sustainable, “green building” design was an emerging field in the early 2000s. Kitchener’s Enermodal Engineering was a leader in the field, pioneering the LEED® system of rating and certifying green projects in Canada. As the firm expanded and looked for new quarters, a Lancaster Road property with a lofty view of the Grand River became available. Although the project was a response to the need for larger quarters, just as importantly A Grander View was to demonstrate a wide range of green and energy-saving features. The building became a working showcase and demonstration facility, an exciting opportunity to show clients, building operators, and other consultants various ways to improve sustainability.
Daylight penetration into the building and views of the Grand River were project priorities. From an architectural standpoint, the narrow footprint and large windows allowed sufficient sunlight into each floor that artificial lighting use could be significantly reduced. The three-storey lobby area is decorated with a glass sculpture modelled on the exact configuration of the Grand River.
Heating and cooling was provided exclusively by electricity through a variable refrigerant flow (VRF) system (a Canadian first). An earth tube provided temper incoming air to minimize heating and cooling loads.
A Grander View building was Canada’s first LEED triple platinum project and went on to win numerous local and national awards, including
However, the essential proof of the building is in its performance. A Grander View achieved an 80% reduction in energy and water consumption, and it continues to inspire building designers to this day.