Sensitive renovation bridges gap between energy-efficient construction and affordability.
Toronto FOCUS features a recent project with Solares Architecture that we engineered.
The vision of a car-free and sustainable lifestyle led the owners to an empty home in Guelph for its charm, walkability, and easy rail-link to Toronto. Originally, they assumed they would build new, but later realized that renovating was the best way to keep costs and environmental impact low. Previously province-owned council housing, the century-old bungalow was unused for years and is now one of the city’s most efficient homes.
A key decision for this project was to create such an efficient, air-tight envelope that non-renewable resources weren’t a necessity. The homeowners wanted to keep both construction and operating costs low, so active systems are solely electric.
The design implements passive solar techniques to maximize daylighting, passive heat gain, and passive cooling. This is especially evident in the Great Room’s new larger southern windows and rear French doors. 100% of the floor space is within seven metres of a window, and there are at least two windows in every room.