Energy Efficient Retrofit of a High-Rise Multifamily Building

Apr 13, 2015

(This entry contains a paper and a powerpoint presentation in pdf format from the BEST4 conference.) The National Institute of Building Sciences estimates that over 70% of the buildings that will be present in 2030 already exist today. The sustainable and energy efficient renewal of existing buildings is paramount to reducing our environmental footprint and improving the operational affordability of buildings. Buildings constantly go through renewals as components including windows, cladding, roofing, and mechanical equipment reach the end of their service lives. Rather than choosing standard or code minimum replacement components, high performance components and designs can reduce energy consumption at low incremental cost. This paper presents a case study of an energy efficient building enclosure retrofit of a 13-story multifamily building in Vancouver, BC. Renewal work to the building enclosure
included the addition of continuous exterior insulation with low conductivity cladding
attachment, replacing the existing windows with triple-glazed fiberglass frame units, and air sealing. The overall effective R-value of the building enclosure (walls, windows and roof) was improved from R-2.8 hr-ft2-F/Btu to R-9.1 hr-ft2-F/Btu. Pre- and post-retrofit whole building airtightness testing showed a 55% reduction in air leakage.

Brittany Hanam, MASc, P.Eng., RDH Building Engineering Ltd., Vancouver, BC
Lorne Ricketts, MASc, EIT, RDH Building Engineering Ltd., Vancouver, BC
Andrew Pape-Salmon, P.Eng., MRM, RDH Building Engineering Ltd., Victoria, BC
Proceedings of the BEST4 Conference
Presented at: 
BEST4 Conference
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
BEST4 Technical Committee, National Institute of Building Sciences

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