The Construction Source

last for 50 years, which means they’ll continue to ensure air tightness – a key element of passive house.” Traditional Canadian knowhow was also essential. “The contractors are skilled at building hockey rinks, so they knew how to pour an insulated floor slab,” says Sealey, “We simply increased the R-value to meet International Passive House standards.” Sealey’s constant and careful attention paid off. The Putman Family YWCA won an Ontario Concrete Award for its innovation. Most important, Byrne confirmed that the Passive House results were well below the required limits for the building to receive international certification. “It is all measured and modelled from the very beginning,” she says. Throughout the entire process, from design to construction, the energy performance of the building was assessed. Every aspect of the building design needed to have Passive House standards in mind with the materials used, orientation of the building and spaces, eliminating thermal bridging (conductive channels for heat to escape) and the energyrecovery mechanical systems. To eliminate thermal bridging, KMAI sourced an insulating fibreglass pin, rather than conductive steel, to hold concrete panels in place. Further, aspects such as maximizing the south-facing windows to increase the heating of the building, minimizing north-facing windows to decrease heat loss, optimizing the surface area to volume ratio, continuous insulation of the Total Precast structure and FEBRUARY 2022