Archive for ‘KPMB’

July 30, 2011

Le Quartier Concordia – John Molson School of Business | KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Tom Arban

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Tom Arban

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Marc Cramer

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Eduard Hueber

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Marc Cramer

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Marc Cramer

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Marc Cramer

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Marc Cramer

Le Quartier Concordia - John Molson School of Business / KPMB Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes © Tom Arban

plan © KPMB Architects plan © KPMB Architects

plan © KPMB Architects plan © KPMB Architects

plan © KPMB Architects plan © KPMB Architects

plan © KPMB Architects plan © KPMB Architects

elevation © KPMB Architects elevation © KPMB Architects

elevation © KPMB Architects elevation © KPMB Architects

elevation © KPMB Architects elevation © KPMB Architects

The John Molson School of Business (JMSB) was designed to accommodate faculty, administrators, and undergraduate and graduate students under one roof to foster a community of scholars and the exchange of ideas. It is also the outcome of a winning design competition scheme. The JMSB represents the third building to complete the bold vision to create Le Quartier Concordia – a new vertical campus bringing together Visual Arts, Engineering/Computer Science and Business on two blocks in downtown Montreal to raise the profile of Concordia’s brand.

Architect: Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg (KPMB) Architects with Fichten Soiferman et Associés Architectes (FSA)
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Project Area: 375,000 sqf
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: Eduard HueberMarc CramerTom Arban

The design leverages Montreal’s urban and natural geography to inject vibrancy into an underutilized precinct. The JMSB occupies a section of St. Catherine Street, a primary retail arterial, in downtown Montreal. The 17-story building is oriented to capture views of the city’s main natural features, the St. Lawrence River and Mont Royal. The interior topography of stacked atria with interconnecting stairs, lounges and a variety of teaching and gathering spaces, was planned and designed to optimize face-to-face interaction between the students and faculty of JMSB. The concrete loft structure is inherently flexible to facilitate connectivity and change, and the emphasis on quality in materials and detailing further advances goals for long term value.

Described as a ‘green centre,’ in addition to meeting LEED Silver requirements, the JMSB features one of the world’s first combinations of solar heat and power technology integrated into a non-residential building as well as the largest solar-electric installation in Quebec.

Facilitating Outstanding Teaching and Discussion-Based Learning
To provide innovation, flexibility and cutting edge technology in classroom and seminar room design, KPMB and user representatives from JMSB conducted an extensive tour of the top business schools in North America to study classroom typologies and develop templates for JMSB teaching spaces. Unlike Harvard, which is committed to the case study format, JMSB determined it would have a variety of formats in a 60 student per class module to accommodate the diversity of teaching modes to distinguish JMSB’s unique brand of openness and inclusivity. The project also includes the ‘breakout’ or ‘teaching in the round classroom.’ The total of 45 classrooms are each individually equipped with complete AV systems: Crestron control panels, flip-top cable storage compartments, computers, DVD and VHS players, LCD projectors, projection screens, speakers and motion sensor controlled highlighting.

Vibrancy and Cross-disciplinary Exchange
Opportunities for breakout, both formal closed configurations and open casual configurations, are designed and located to intensify a sense of community within the tower format, with an emphasis on creating a hub of activity on the first four floors. The second floor features a ‘floating event room’ suspended in the main atrium, and closed group study areas on the second and third floors provide options for various scales of gathering. The top of the Special Functions room is used as a student lounge and workspace area. Roof terraces are designed as outdoor extensions of offices, study areas and lounge space. The 15th floor has a faculty lounge with terrace and an oval conference room with catering facilities.

Environmental Sustainability
The design was conceived at the threshold of sustainable design and energy reduction emerging as priorities in architecture. At the same time, the Faculty of Business and Administration was also expanding its focus on sustainable issues, and has since established the David O’Brien Centre for Sustainable Enterprise to position Concordia as a leader in business practices that support corporate and social responsibility, and environmental initiatives. Designed as a forerunner to LEED, Concordia, the Faculty and the architects committed early on to establishing the JMSB as a ‘green’ centre. The design meets LEED Silver level requirements.

The John Molson School of Business is also distinguished as the world’s first demonstration of an innovative combination of solar heat and power technology integrated into a non-residential building as well as the largest solar-electric installation in Quebec. It features approximately 300 sq. metres of an innovative photovoltaic-thermal system. It represents the next generation of building design in that it will not only produce energy for its own use, but produce energy for the electricity network. A large energy display in the lobby will allow the public to view the real-time energy captured by the sun and used by the building. Strategic decisions, such as the absence of indoor parking and the integration of an underground tunnel to the Guy Metro station, encourage access by public transit.

Project Team:

-Marianne McKenna (partner-in-charge), Bruce Kuwabara (design partner), Andrew Dyke (associate-in-charge), Glenn MacMullin (project architect), Rob Kastelic, John Peterson, Lucy Timbers, Eric Ho, Paulo Zasso, Andre Prefontaine, Jill Greaves Osiowy, Omar Gandhi, Esther Cheung, Virginia Dos Reis, Lilly Liaukus, Olesia Stefurak, Deborah Wang; FSA-Jacob Fichten (partner-in-charge, Chargé de Projet), Gerald Soiferman (partner, administration), Andrij Serbyn, Benoit Lamoureux, Julie Dionne, Victor Garzon, Artur Kobylanski , Etienne Gibeault, Jessica Cuevas, Patrick Tiernan, Dimitri Koubatis, Martine Lacombe, Eric Jofriet, Marie-Helene Trudeau, Bertrand Marais, Lheila Palumbo
Structural Engineer: Nicolet Chartrand Knoll Limitée
Mechanical and Electrical Engineer: Groupe HBA Experts-Conseils Senc
Code and Safety: Curran McCabe RavindranTechnorm Inc.
Vertical Transportation: Exim
Audio/Visual: Trizart Alliance
IT/Security: Doucet et Associés
Project Manager: Genivar
General Contractor: J.E. Verreault

http://www.archdaily.com/154345/le-quartier-concordia-john-molson-school-of-business-kpmb-architects-with-fichten-soiferman-et-associes-architectes/

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July 22, 2011

Block 24E | KPMB Architects

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

Block 24E / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

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Block 24E combines residential building forms of different heights with street-related retail bases to activate the southern portion of Spadina Avenue, one of ’s most important north-south arterials. It anchors the CityPlace development as it transitions from east to west and forms a gateway on Spadina to create a more inviting pedestrian experience. Beyond activating the precinct, its formal silhouette will make a significant statement in support of the Mayor’s and the City of ’s agenda to create a City Beautiful.

Architect: Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg (KPMB) Architects
Location: 
Project Area: 662,734 sqf
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: Tom Arban

 

Architecture of Record: Page + Steele Incorporated
Facade Consultants: Brook Van Dalen & Associates Limited
Code and Life Safety: Larden Muniak Consulting Inc.
Surveyor: R. Avis Surveying Inc.
Traffic Consultant: LEA Consulting Ltd.
Public Art Consultant: Mills & Mills Consulting
Shoring: Isherwood Associates
Structural Engineer: Yolles Partnership Inc.
Mechanical/Electrical Engineer: MCW Consultants Ltd.
Landscape Architect: Corban & Goode
Acoustical and Vibration: Aercoustics Engineering Ltd.
Elevator Consultant: Soberman Engineering
Waste Management: Cini-Little International Inc.
Geotechnical & Environmental: Decommisioning Consulting Services Ltd.
Windy Study: Rowan Williams Davies & Irwin Inc. (RWDI)
Barristers & Solicitors: Airds & Berlis LLP
Costing: PCL Constructors Canada Inc

The design is composed of three distinct elements: NEO, a north-south loft building, a light Pavilion with restaurant, retail and recreational amenities on Bremner Blvd, and Montage, a 40-story point tower on the north-west corner of the parcel. A continuous abstract element defines the profiles of both horizontal surface and vertical planes and unifies the ensemble. The overall expression of the buildings is light and contemporary, using glass and metal on the upper stories to mitigate the impact of their mass on the street, while stone, wood and other tactile materials establish an inviting, pedestrian-scale experience at street level.

The Montage tower is set back to have the least impact on the street. Its larger face is oriented to maximize optimal views to the Lake  and city. The design was conceived in the spirit of iconic towers that distinguish major international cities, emphasizing simplicity and proportion to create a bold statement for City Place on ’s skyline.

The architectural concept speaks to an increasingly sophisticated and discerning first-time group of home buyers who want to live in the city but need affordable homes. The units in the NEO building have already been sold out, largely due to their modernist yet cost-effective designs which feature sliding glass doors, natural materials and flexible and highly functional plans. A major grocery store will provide a much-needed source of fresh produce and attract residents from the surrounding neighborhoods and towers.

The design of Block 24E demonstrates that contemporary residential developments can be cost effective, distinctive in design, and have a broad and positive urban impact.

http://www.archdaily.com/152349/block-24e-kpmb-architects/

June 22, 2011

TIFF Bell Lightbox | KPMB Architects

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Maris Mezulis

Architect: Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg (KPMB) Architects
Location: 
Project Team: Bruce Kuwabara, Design partner; Shirley Blumberg, Partner-in-Charge; Luigi LaRocca, Senior Associate; Matthew Wilson, Project Architect; Matt Krivosudsky, Bruno Weber, Brent Wagler, Glenn MacMullin, Andrea Macaroun, Rita Kiriakis, Lilly Liakus, Carolyn Lee, David Poloway ,Tyler Sharp, Debra Fabricus, Claudio Venier, Thom Seto, Walter Gaudet, Krista Clark, Clementine Chang, Winston Chong, Carla Munoz, Elizabeth Paden, Bill Colaco, Nicko Elliot, Norm Li.
Architect of Record: Kirkor Architects & Planners
Project Area: 547,000 sqf
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Maris MezulisTom Arban, Mehrdad Tavakkolian

Structural Engineer: Jablonsky, Ast and Partners
Mechanical and Electrical Engineer: Leipciger Kaminker Mitelman
Landscape Architect: NAK Design Group
Life Safety: Leber Rubes Inc
Cost: Helyar & Associates
Acoustic: Aercoustics Engineering Ltd & Valcoustics  Ltd.
A/V: Brian Arnott Associates
Theater: Peter Smith Architect Inc.
Wind Study: RWDI Consulting Engineers
Transportation: Marshall Macklin Monaghan
Lighting: Pivotal Lighting Group
Signage: Gottschalk + Ash

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Mehrdad Tavakkolian

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Maris Mezulis

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Maris Mezulis

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TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Maris Mezulis

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

TIFF Bell Lightbox / KPMB Architects © Tom Arban

The winning competition design for the Bell Lightbox and Festival Tower was conceived on an epic scale to create a city of cinema within the city that hosts one of the most important annual film festivals. It was also designed to reflect the heterogeneity and openness that characterizes. Located in the heart of the city’s media and entertainment district, the architecture of the Bell Lightbox at the corner of King and John Streets injects energy into the precinct.

The Bell Lightbox, a horizontal, 5-story podium building, establishes its cultural image on the streetscape while the 42-story point tower, set back on John Street, commands the skyline. The two elements formally relate in the simple proportions of the volumes, common materials, and quality of detailing. The transition between the two occurs at the point where the roof of the Bell Lightbox meets the base of the Tower. The form and expression of the condominium tower creates a clean, contemporary figure with an illuminated light box at its top to enrich ’s evolving skyline.

The King Street elevation is a composition of projecting volumes and surfaces contained within a continuous loop of movement that begins with the street level canopy and then rises to the upper levels to culminate at the stepped roof. The canopy, with its metal soffits and LED lights, enhances the arrival experience. Extended sequences of horizontal montages of clear, fritted and translucent glass panels animate the upper surfaces and in project the silhouettes of people moving within to the street.

Inside the Lightbox, the design acts as a framework for human action and imagination in which the solidity of architecture and the ephemerality of the medium of film are fused. The flexible plan is based on the tradition of industrial loft buildings. Within this framework, the volumes of the cinema theaters (ranging from 80 to 550 seats) and spaces for gathering, display and production are arranged to promote movement and visual connectivity. A three-story central atrium features a red framed glass window into the master control booth. The architectural volumes of the five cinemas are expressed as black zinc clad buildings within the building, and the spaces between act as interior streets along which visitors are oriented. The cinema interiors are dark, unadorned and enclosed to focus the attention between viewers and film.

The main entrance leads directly to the main escalator, ramps and stairs which together weave a fluid sequence of movement to the cinemas above. On the fourth and fifth levels administrative and production spaces, library and archives are organized around a second, light-filled atrium. A generous café and restaurant, operated by Oliver Bonacini, occupy the first two levels of the corner at King and John. At street level, Canteen is wrapped by an outdoor café terrace. On the second level, Luma is integrated with the Blackberry Lounge.

The design culminates in the monumentally-scaled stepped roof. Inspired by the stepped roof of the Villa Malaparte in Capri featured in Jean Luc Godard’s 1963 Contempt, this major new outdoor public space encapsulates the fusion of architecture and film.

http://www.archdaily.com/142570/tiff-bell-lightbox-kpmb-architects/

 

February 13, 2011

Winnipeg skyscraper earns tall tower award

Manitoba Hydro place earned the best tall building in the America’s award from the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

© PAUL HULTBERG

Manitoba Hydro place earned the best tall building in the America’s award from the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

A Toronto architectural firm’s unique design approach helped a Winnipeg skyscraper win the title of the year’s best tall building in the Americas.

Manitoba Hydro Place is a 23-storey, energy-efficient building on Winnipeg’s Portage Avenue and it earned the award from the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH).

The $300 million is aiming for at least LEED Gold certification and was designed through a joint venture between Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg (KPMB) Architects Ltd. and Atlanta-based Smith Carter Architects and Engineers. The building was completed in December 2008.

“What really differentiated this project from other buildings was from the beginning it was organized and designed through an Integrated Design Process (IDP),” said Kael Opie, KPMB project architect.

“The IDP process is an organization by which the primary consultants, along with the architect and the client, all come to the table at the beginning of the project. This allows the primary players to make fundamental decisions about the shape and form of the building as a group.”

Opie said that under the classical model of building, the architect comes up with the concept, sells it to the client and then calls in the engineers.

“The IDP turns the classic approach on its head,” he said.

“This was critical for Manitoba Hydro because we were trying to achieve a high level of energy reductions.”

The goal was to achieve a 60 per cent energy savings.

“A lot of things went into achieving this energy efficiency saving,” he explained.

“The main difference between Hydro Place and a typical building is the heating and cooling of the building is achieved using a passive system, when possible. The shape of the building, orientation and atriums were all arranged to meet the energy requirements of the client.”

The IDP process was enhanced by extensive computer modeling using local wind, sun and temperature data to evaluate design options.

The building also has the largest closed loop geothermal system in the province. There are 280 boreholes, each 150 mm (6”) in diameter, that penetrate the site 125 metres (400 ft.) underground.

A key element in the passive ventilation system is a solar chimney that draws used air out of the building and preheats the incoming cold air in the south atria, during the winter.

Depending on the season, a 24 metre tall waterfall feature in each of the atria humidifies or dehumidifies the incoming air.

During colder times, recovered heat from exhaust air and passive solar radiant energy are used to warm the fresh air.

Manually operated windows on the interior curtain wall, combined with the automated exterior wall vents controlled by the Building Management System, allow employees to control their individual environment.

The site was strategically selected because more than 95 per cent of the bus routes pass by, including routes to suburban Winnipeg, where 80 per cent of Manitoba Hydro employees live.

Every feature of Manitoba Hydro Place was integrated to make this building one of the most energy-efficient office towers in the world.

The CTBUH, which is based at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, is the world’s leading organization on tall buildings.

Buildings throughout the world are recognized by region at its annual awards ceremony.

The 2009 tall building winners are:

• Manitoba Hydro Place, Winnipeg

• Linked Hybrid, Beijing, China

• The Broadgate Tower, London, UK

• Tornado Tower, Doha, Qatar

One of these four will be named Best Tall Building Overall at the council’s awards dinner in Chicago on October 22-23.

Some of the Players:

Integrated Design Process (IDP) team:

Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects & Smith Carter Architects and Engineers, in joint venture.

Design architects:

Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects

Architects of record:

Smith Carter Architects and Engineers

Construction manager:

PCL Constructors Canada Inc.

Energy/climate engineers:

Transolar

Advocate architect:

Prairie Architects Inc.

Demolition contractor:

Paragon Industries

Consultants:

Crosier Kilgour/Halcrow Yolles (structural)

AECOM Canada Ltd. (mechanical & electrical)

Hilderman Thomas Frank Cram & Phillips Farevaag Smallenberg (landscape)

Leber Rubes(life safety)

Brook Van Dalen & Associates (building envelope)

Soberman Engineering (vertical transportation)

Aercoustics (acoustics)

RWDI Inc. (microclimate)

Hanscomb (quantity surveyor)

 

by RICHARD GILBERT

http://www.journalofcommerce.com/article/id34844

February 13, 2011

Manitoba Hydro | KPMB Architects

mahydro_07 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_02 © Gerry Kopelow

mahydro_01 © Gerry Kopelow

mahydro_03 © Paul Hultberg

mahydro_10 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_11 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_12 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_13 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_14 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_15 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_16 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_17 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_18 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_19 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_20 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_21 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_22 © Eduard Hueber

mahydro_23 © Eduard Hueber

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Architects: Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects (Design Architects) / Smith Carter Architects + Engineers (Executive Architects) / Transsolar (Climate Engineers)
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, 
Project Team: Bruce Kuwabara, Luigi LaRocca, John Peterson, Kael Opie, Lucy Timbers, Glenn MacMullin, Ramon Janer, Javier Uribe, Taymoore Balbaa, Steven Casey, Clementine Chang, Chu Dongzhu, Virginia Dos Reis, Andrew Dyke, Omar Gandhi, Bettina Herz, Eric Ho, Tanya Keigan, Steven Kopp, John Lee, Norm Li, Eric Johnson, Andrea Macaroun, Rob Micacchi, Lauren Poon, Rachel Stecker, Matt Storus, Richard Unterthiner, Dustin Valen, Francesco Valente-Gorjup, Marnie Williams, William Wilmotte, Paulo Zasso
Architects of Record: Smith Carter Architects and Engineers
Client: Manitoba Hydro
Project Area: 64,590 sqm
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: Gerry KopelowPaul HultbergEduard Hueber

Manitoba Hydro is the major energy utility in the Province of Manitoba, the fourth largest energy utility in  and offers some of the lowest electricity rates in the world. Owned by the provincial government, nearly all of its electricity comes from self-renewing water power. Its new headquarters tower, Manitoba Hydro Place, is the first of the next generation of sustainable buildings integrating time-tested environmental concepts in conjunction with advanced technologies to achieve a “living building” that dynamically responds to the local climate.

Located in downtown Winnipeg, the city is known for its extreme climate, with temperatures that fluctuate from -35ºC (-31 ºF) to +34ºC (95 ºF) over the year. The 64,500 m² (695,000 ft²) tower is targeting less than 100 kWh/m²/a compared to 400 kWh/m²/a for a typical large scale North American office tower located in a more temperate climate. The architectural solution clearly responds to the client’s vision, and relies on passive free energy without compromise to design quality and, most importantly, human comfort.

The street address, 360 Portage Avenue, encapsulates the three-hundred and sixty degree approach of the formal Integrated Design Process (IDP) mandated by the client to achieve the objectives of 60% energy savings, supportive workplace, urban revitalization, signature architecture and cost effectiveness. The site was strategically selected because over 95% of the bus routes pass this address, including routes to suburban Winnipeg where 80% of Manitoba Hydro employees live. The IDP process was greatly enhanced by extensive computer modeling using local wind, sun and temperature data to evaluate design options. The building is already projected to outperform its original energy goal by 64% or higher.

Dubbed an ‘Open Book’ by citizens of Winnipeg, the tower design forms a capital ‘A’ composed of two 18-storey twin office towers which rest on a stepped, three-storey, street-scaled podium. The towers converge at the north and splay open to the south for maximum exposure to the abundant sunlight and consistently robust southerly winds unique to Winnipeg’s climate. The podium includes a publicly accessible Galleria to offer citizens a sheltered pedestrian route through the full city block. Narrow floor plates and tall floor-to-ceiling glazing allow sunlight to penetrate into the core. A double façade curtain-wall system made of low-iron glass forms a one metre (three foot) wide buffer zone. It is comprised of a double-glazed outer wall and a single-glazed inner wall which insulates the building against heat and cold. Automated louvre shades control glare and heat gain while radiant slabs act as an internal heat exchange with the geothermal field.

A 115 metre (377 foot) tall solar chimney marks the north elevation and main entrance on Portage Avenue, and establishes an iconic presence for Manitoba Hydro on the skyline. The solar chimney is a key element in the passive ventilation system which relies on the natural stack effect. The chimney draws used air out of the building during the shoulder seasons and summer months. In winter, exhaust air is drawn to the bottom of the solar chimney by fans, and heat recovered from this exhaust air is used to warm the parkade and to preheat the incoming cold air in the south atria.

In contrast to conventional North American office buildings which use recirculated air, Manitoba Hydro Place is filled with 100% fresh air, 24 hours a day, year round, regardless of outside temperatures. Within the splay of the two towers, a series of three, six-storey south atria, or winter gardens, form the lungs of the building, drawing in outside air and pre-conditioning it before it enters the workspaces through adjustable vents in the raised floor. Depending on the season, a 24 metre tall waterfall feature in each of the atria humidifies or dehumidifies the incoming air. During colder temperatures, recovered heat from exhaust air, and passive solar radiant energy are used to warm the fresh air. The conditioned air is drawn through the raised floors into the office spaces through under floor fan units. Building occupants, computers and other sources of heat cause the air to rise, which is then drawn north and exhausted by the solar chimney. In the shoulder seasons, the building relies solely on outdoor fresh air through the use of automatic and manually operated windows.

Manitoba Hydro Place also has the largest closed loop geothermal system in the province. 280 boreholes, each 150 mm (6”) in diameter, penetrate the site 125 metres (400 ft.) underground, circulating glycol which is cooled in the summer and heated in the winter by the ground source heat exchanger. Water is circulated through the heat exchanger and distributed through thermal mass of the concrete structure which in turn heats or cools the space consistently.

Manually operated windows on the interior curtain wall, combined with the automated exterior wall vents controlled by the Building Management System, allow employees to control their individual environment. This elemental detail reflects Manitoba Hydro’s commitment to the well-being of its employees, as well as to its goals for improved productivity and reduced absenteeism. Workstations and glass enclosed meeting spaces are organized into neighborhoods around each atrium to support individual and team-centred work processes. In both the north and south atria, interconnecting stairs promote physical activity, reduce reliance on elevators and provide opportunities for interaction between divisions. The podium rooftops feature deep soil intensive green roofs and accessible terraces, creating a lush landscaped outdoor amenity for employees, while also reducing stormwater runoff and providing additional thermal insulation. A reflective coating on the tower rooftops reduces the summer season cooling load and the urban heat island effect.

Manitoba Hydro is as invested in creating a supportive workplace and revitalizing Winnipeg’s downtown as it is in achieving energy savings and signature architecture. The building connects to the city’s elevated sheltered pedestrian network. In the former head office, located in the suburbs of Winnipeg, 95% of the employees drove to work alone. In anticipation of the transition, Manitoba Hydro secured a number of parking stalls downtown. At the same time, it created various incentives, including corporate participation in the Transit EcoPass program to encourage employee use of public transit. Six months after moving into the new building, more than 50% of relocated employees are leaving their cars at home. As a result Manitoba Hydro has been able to reduce its parking spots and has observed a five-fold increase in employee use of public transit compared to the previous year. Qualitatively, employees are reporting that they are enjoying time gained to read and socialize with colleagues.

With a vested interest in the downtown, leasing opportunities in the base building are limited in an effort to stimulate the support of local businesses, and to encourage staff to experience their city. Restaurants and bars are already reporting a tremendous increase in revenue as a result of the influx of over 1600 Hydro employees to the area.

Ultimately, Manitoba Hydro Place sets a precedent for the seamless integration of architectural excellence and climate responsive, energy efficient and sustainable design while enhancing and improving the quality and comfort of the human experience and the civility of urban life.

http://www.archdaily.com/44596/manitoba-hydro-kpmb-architects/