Annabelle Tower, a decades-old concrete slab apartment tower is one of the four sites that will benefit from Toronto mayor David Miller’s Tower Renewal program. The program will bring building upgrades, community reinvestment and greening initiatives that will result in vibrant communities and considerably reduced greenhouse gases.
Presently the 460-unit, 23-floor concrete slab building located at 2677 Kipling Avenue, Etobicoke, Ontario is aging, disorganized with the adjoining open spaces being underused and badly looked after. Miller’s Tower Renewal program will breathe new life into the Annabelle Tower by adding new features to it. The transformed structure will have use thermal over-cladding, which will drastically bring down the energy consumption. The cladding can support high-speed internet cables and garbage separation chutes, in addition to clean energy installation such as photovoltics.
The tower that currently emits more than 2,400 tonnes of greenhouse gases will now have green retrofits like grey-water recycling system, clean energy installations and smart metering that will not only reduce the operational cost but will also result in lesser carbon-emissions. There are plans to include renewable energy installations, which would primarily include turbine installation, geothermal heating and cooling system, solar hot-water heating system, green roofs, storm water retention system and grey water recycling system. All of these will constitute in reducing the environmental impact and at the same time will help save some money.
Today the tower’s apartment are too small to accommodate large families, so in order to solve the problem vertical or horizontal apartments would be combined to the existing building. The surrounding open spaces that are underused could be used urban agriculture. Food production could be combined with local composting programs, seasonal markets, youth training and community kitchens.
The Annabelle Tower is getting set to win the ZEROprize and Zerofootprint R-Skinning Award offered by Zerofootprint. The ZEROPrize will be awarded to the design team that will transform an old concrete high-rise building into a structure that reduces carbon, water and energy footprints to net zero and at the same time maintains highest architectural design standard. The refurbishment would incorporate re-skinning along with other retrofitting technologies. In order to acquire this prize, the entry will have to maintain a net zero footprint for a year.
The Zerofootprint Re-Skinning Award would be won by a structure is exceptional artful in design and well re-skinned. The award aims to arouse global interest in new building technologies. Its website will provide appropriate information regarding how green, retrofitting technologies can reduce energy demand, clean our cities, and save them money.