Tupper Building / CRC Energy Retrofit
Dalhousie recognizes the crucial role it has to play in providing sustainability leadership by making improvements to how its campus consumes energy. The Sir Charles Tupper Medical Building, the Clinical Research Centre (CRC) and their interconnecting Tupper Link building are an important part of the university campus where critical medical sciences research and learning takes place. Due to the nature of the use of these buildings, they have the highest energy intensity of any major buildings at Dalhousie University. This means that the buildings use more energy per unit area than each of the rest of the facilities.
The 15-storey Tupper Building has been in use since 1967; the CRC since 1924. Many of the building systems in both facilities are near the end of their useful life and in need of replacement. The university is planning to support their commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship by reducing the ecological footprint of the Tupper and CRC buildings through energy-saving and water-saving initiatives. This program creates the added opportunity to replace the systems with newer, more efficient systems that will generate a dramatic reduction in the buildings’ energy intensity, as well as a reduction of the university’s deferred maintenance. By improving the facility condition through renewed infrastructure, Dalhousie is creating a better learning space.
The improvements in the facilities are outlined in Dalhousie’s Campus Energy Master Plan to reduce the overall demand on the electrical and utility infrastructure systems.
The project is designed to:
- Reduce the electricity, water, and steam demand of the facilities through numerous interconnected energy conservation improvements varying in cost and complexity, thereby reducing the carbon footprint of the facilities as well;
- Incorporate high-priority facility renewal projects;
- Improve the operations, building safety and indoor environment quality throughout the facilities; and
- Fund all of the work through long-term energy cost savings that will be tracked and validated.
- Location: Sir Charles Tupper Medical Building, the Tupper Link building, and the Clinical Research Centre
- Size: 37 500 m2
- Budget: $12m
- Annual energy savings: $605k
- Annual Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions reductions: 2,705 tonnes eCO2
- Construction start date: November 2015
- Construction completion: February 2018
- Project Partner: MCW Custom Energy Solutions Ltd.
The solution of energy conservation and infrastructure improvements developed in collaboration between MCW Custom Energy Solutions and Dalhousie University will:
- Improve energy efficiency;
- Reduce water consumption;
- Reduce GHG emissions;
- Improve the indoor environment quality; and
- Address facility renewal and safety requirements.
Each Improvement has been briefly profiled below.
Energy-efficient Lighting Retrofits – Comprehensive lighting retrofits will be conducted in all buildings, including replacement of fluorescent lighting with new high efficient fluorescent lighting, selective new lighting fixtures, selective LED lighting in some areas, and underground parking lighting conversion to LED lighting.
Heat Recovery / Energy Exchange System – A new closed-loop energy exchange system will be installed. Piping will be provided throughout the building, primarily in service areas, to connect to existing coolers, air conditioners and heat pumps. A pumping system will be provided to distribute the heat through the piping system to areas requiring heat.
Ventilation System – Variable Flow Labs in Tupper Tower – Currently, the ventilation system in the Tupper Tower lab floors, floors 3 to 15, is constant volume air supply, with constant volume general and fume hood exhaust. The energy upgrades includes converting the supply and exhaust air systems to variable air volume (VAV) to suit the actual load, improve ventilation effectiveness, and improve the lab safety.
Variable Air Volume Conversion – For the area of the Tupper Link between the Tupper tower and the CRC, convert existing air handling systems from constant volume to variable volume to suit actual loads of the spaces. As part of the work on this improvement, the fume hood exhaust fans in the Atlantic Research Centre (ARC) lab will be replaced with new vortex exhaust fans having high velocity discharge for improved safety.
Air Handling Unit Replacement, Link Tutorial – The Link Tutorial area is served with ventilation air by an older air handling unit. The AHU will be replaced and converted to an energy efficient system providing independent variable flow fans for both heating and for cooling.
Variable Speed Drives on Pumping Systems – New variable speed pumping system to match demand on building chilled water pumps, heat recovery glycol pumps, an on the domestic water booster pumps.
Domestic Water Plumbing Fixtures – Existing water closets (toilets) will be replaced with new touchless water closets, including new ceramic fixtures and flush valves. Existing urinals will be replaced as well, complete with new ceramic fixtures and flush valves. Existing faucet aerators will be replaced with low-flow aerators where appropriate.
Window Replacement, Tupper Link Curtain Wall (West Wall) – In the interconnecting link between the Tupper tower and the CRC, the curtain wall windows will be replaced. The curtain wall is two stories tall, from the ground to the second floor, on the west wall of the building. The new curtain wall will have improved shading, and improved thermal performance.
Animal Care Cage Washer Refurbishment – The existing animal care cage washer will be upgraded with new equipment. The new equipment will consume less water through the multiple stages of a cage washer load.
Elevator Modernization, Clinical Research Centre – The existing hydraulic elevator in the CRC will be provided with new controls, switchgear, cab controls and finishes to modernize the elevator and make it fully-accessible.
Motor Control Centre Replacement – The existing motor control centre (MCC) requires end-of-life replacement. The MCC serves pumps, fans, and other building system motors in the basement of the Tupper building.