TORONTO – George Brown College plans to construct Ontario’s first tall wood institutional building. The planned 12-storey, carbon-neutral facility will be home to a Tall Wood Building Research Institute.
Called “The Arbour”, it will serve as a living laboratory both during its construction and once complete, where students and researchers will learn to design, construct, operate and monitor climate-friendly buildings. It will be located on George Brown’s Waterfront Campus, to the north of the LEED Gold certified Daphne Cockwell Centre for Health Sciences. The college recently purchased the land from the City of Toronto.
In the fall, the college will launch an international design competition among the firms uniquely qualified to undertake such a project.
“This distinctive new location will help us contribute to the mitigation of climate change and environmental sustainability while supporting our continued intention to create campus environments that are innovative, creative and stimulating for student learning,” said George Brown College president Anne Sado.
Over the past several years, a number of tall wood projects have been completed around the world, demonstrating successful applications of new wood and mass timber technologies. In addition to the opportunity for design innovation, mass timber construction has many other advantages, making it an innovative approach in sustainable building efforts.
As the first of its kind in Ontario, The Arbour is envisioned as a demonstration facility that drives forward advancements in sustainable innovation and helps support the development of green buildings throughout Canada. George Brown also sees the new site as a premier opportunity to build on its commitment to provide environmentally-sustainable campuses.
A key element in the creation of a low-carbon campus will be the integration of smart building systems: networked, intelligent, sensitive and adaptable.