Interior renovation of 15,000 square feet for a non-profit organization’s autism treatment program in Scarborough (Toronto’s East End)
Aisling Discoveries Child and Family Centre TPAS (Toronto Partnership for Autism Services)
Green Reason’s Role
Project Manager and LEED Consultant
Aisling Discoveries wanted to create a great space for the children and families that use their services. This included consolidating all of their autism programs into one facility. The budget was tight and the organization faced a fixed move date to avoid rental on two facilities.
Green Reason initially was contracted by a leading Toronto interior design company, Kirsh + Associates, to be the project manager, and review the needs analysis and options. As the project progressed, however, it became apparent that this was a project that would fit well into the guiding principles offered by the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating system.
What Was Done
Green Reason promoted LEED-CI (Commercial Interiors) as a set of guiding principles for creating healthier, more energy-efficient space to the client. Quickly, they became excited about the possibilities offered by LEED. Aisling Discoveries envisioned a healthy learning environment for their children and staff, and a facility that reduces its impact on the greater environment.
Budget, however, was a serious concern. The project was already experiencing funding issues that were limiting the scope of the work. Green Reason and Kirsh + Associates set out to integrate LEED into the design without increasing costs.
Through careful planning, research and innovative thinking, we accomplished the following:
- Four aging rooftop HVAC units were replaced with new energy-efficient CFC and HCFC free units.
- All of the old magnetic ballasted T12 light fixtures were retrofitted and/or replaced with new or salvaged electronically ballasted T8 light fixtures reducing the energy consumption from lighting by almost 50%.
- Reduced potable water consumption by over 35%
- Over 40% of the existing interior walls, ceilings, doors, frames and millwork
- Carpet tiles, ceiling tiles, doors and frames from other projects were salvaged
to account for over 10% of the materials used on this project.
- Construction materials used contained over 25% recycled content
- Over 98% of the furniture and equipment in the space was relocated
from existing facilities
- Over 80% of the construction material and new furniture was sourced from
- Over 75% of all wood products used on site are Forest Stewardship Council
(FSC) certified as being from well-managed forests
- Only low-VOC paints, adhesives and flooring materials were used
- All composite wood products and adhesives are urea-formaldehyde free
- Diverted over 80% of the construction waste from landfill sites
- Implemented a green housekeeping policy to ensure that no harmful toxins are introduced into the space as part of the ongoing maintenance programs
Additional project challenges included mechanical and electrical site conditions as well as overcoming zoning issues. Green Reason worked with the client, landlord, City and the general contractor to solve these problems and complete the work on time as well as ensure LEED® certification within the schedule. This was all done without exceeding the original project budget provided by the client.
Results Speak for Themselves
In addition to being done on time and under budget, the Aisling Discoveries TPAS Project is LEED® Canada-CI Silver Certified. Today Aisling Discoveries, its staff and clients, are proud of their beautiful facility, “I wanted to reiterate our thanks for the site visit this week!” wrote one senior manager when the work was completed, “ The space looks fantastic and I know the staff will be thrilled when they get in! “
What they are saying
“Sorry for continually bugging you to see the site and I am glad that you waited until now to invite us — it was a very positive experience and you and Donna are a fantastic team who created something wonderful for our kids which won’t add to the damage that we are doing to our environment — WOW!!!!!”
“You guys have done a fantastic job!”
Download PDF of Project Profile