Concept renderings of some of the planned common spaces in Helio
Hot on the heels of opening Ontario’s first net zero energy commercial building – the Sifton Centre – and phase one of our net zero townhomes (now 77% leased), we’re breaking ground on two exciting new additions to our sustainable community: 1305 Riverbend, a 40,000 square office/retail building, and “Helio”, a 10 storey, 115-unit apartment building with ground floor retail space.
Excavation and backfilling for 1305 Riverbend is complete, and structural steel is up. When finished in May 2019, the 4-storey building will be fitted with 820 strategically-placed 400W solar panels – on the roof and exterior walls. This will allow the building to generate 384,000 kilowatt hours of electricity in a year, which is enough to power 32 Canadian homes on average.
The best part of all is that the office building will be 100% net zero, meaning that it will generate as much energy as it uses in a year, thanks to its solar panels combined with a state-of-the-art HVAC system, LED lighting throughout, smart lighting controls and a super-tight building “envelope”. Since we built the Sifton Centre, solar panels have already become more efficient and less costly. In the last five years, a single panel has doubled their power output.
To keep everyone in West 5 in the loop about what’s going on in the community, a giant digital display (energy-efficient, of course) on the corner of 1305 Riverbend overlooking the park will be broadcasting community programs, events, and news from West 5 retailers.
On the home front, we’re just as excited to announce that construction is beginning on Helio, our 175,000 square foot apartment building, which will include approximately 25,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor. When complete, Helio will be the most energy-efficient multi-use residential highrise in Ontario.
Because Helio is a high density building, it has more occupants and higher electricity use in a small area. That means 100% net zero is not feasible for a building like this. However we were able to make Helio 70% more energy efficient than similar-sized residential buildings constructed to the standard building code – which makes it the most energy-efficient apartment in the province! What that means for future West 5 residents is that they can enjoy modern and comfortable apartment-style living in a sustainable neighbourhood, with the added benefit of lower hydro bills.
Helio is scheduled to be completed in April 2020.
You can register for updates and learn more about Helio here!