Sustainability Innovative technologies that benefit the environment and the bottom line
In conceiving TELUS Sky, we considered every opportunity to optimize energy efficiency. TELUS Sky will achieve LEED Platinum (2009) status and will be recognized as one of the most technologically advanced and efficient buildings in North America.
“As human beings we don’t have to accept the world as it is. We can actually create the world of our dreams.” – Bjarke Ingels TELUS Sky Lead Architect, BIG
Truly sustainable buildings are about much more than energy efficiency. TELUS Sky provides 100% fresh indoor air supply and the highest levels of natural light in the Calgary market, it consumes less water and other resources than its peers, and in its construction and operation will source materials locally and those that do not contain substances harmful to the environment. Finally, it will support and encourage its occupants to utilize transit or cycle or walk to and from work.
TELUS Sky will be certified LEED Platinum under the latest standards, placing it among the most environmentally sensitive mixed-use developments in North America, scoring high for location; water efficiency; energy systems; building materials and resources; indoor air and light quality; transit proximity and innovation in its construction and procurement.
- Triple glazed façade
- Insulated panels on the opaque portions of the facade
- Central Campus Plant provides heating and cooling as well as co-generation and absorption cooling. Waste heat recovery from neighbouring buildings will improve plant efficiency.
- Thermal energy recovery between TELUS Sky residential and office portions
- 100% outdoor air displacement ventilation with heat recovery
- Highly efficient LED lighting
- Occupancy sensors
- Daylighting controls
- Electric vehicle charging stations
- Water Conservation Plumbing Fixtures
- Energy Star Appliances
What are the benefits to tenants of a LEED Platinum building?
The TELUS Sky office building is being designed to a LEED Platinum standard, one of the first office buildings of its kind in North America. LEED Platinum buildings follow the strictest rules in building design, siting and materials selection to achieve the highest level of environmental sustainability in real estate.
Office tenants of TELUS Sky can be confident they have made a very strong effort to limit their footprint on the environment to the lowest level possible.
In addition, while LEED Platinum meshes very well with corporate culture and governmental regulation compliance, several studies have also shown that the financial benefits to an end-user reach far beyond energy savings. LEED Platinum designed buildings have significantly better daylighting, with improved thermal comfort (through the use of superior and more efficient HVAC systems), and much lower source emissions. While it is difficult to quantify the exact tertiary benefits, it has been shown that green building design is positively and significantly correlated with increased employee productivity. Increases in thermal comfort and superior HVAC have been shown to contribute to productivity gains up to 34%. Lighting controls allowing for more natural light show productivity gains amongst the workforce in excess of 7% and better ventilation control has been shown to contribute up to 2% in productivity increases.
There are also quantifiable gains that are related to attracting and retaining the best and the brightest workforce. According to a recent Kelly Global Workforce Survey, “80% of global workers want to work for an organization that has the reputation for being environmentally responsible.” Workplace qualities that improve the environment of knowledge-workers have also been shown to reduce stress and lead to longer lives for interdisciplinary teams.
Evidence also indicates that LEED Platinum designed buildings are quickly becoming the new standard for modern workplaces to adapt to the changing needs of the workforce.
Please see report: Corporate Environmental Behavior and the Impact on Brand Values by Tandberg,http://www.ivci.com/pdf/corporateenvironmental-behaviour-and-the-impact-onbrand-values.pdf
How will operating costs at TELUS Sky be affected by the LEED Platinum design?
TELUS Sky is being designed to a LEED Platinum standard, which lowers energy use and allows for reduction in utility costs when compared to a standard office building.
TELUS Sky is designed to optimize energy performance, to reduce water consumption using rainwater harvesting and to utilize a lower peak electrical consumption. All of these infrastructure components combined create a building that is more efficient, and less expensive to operate.
Are the ceiling heights higher in TELUS Sky than a standard office space?
Yes, most office buildings have a clear height of 9.0 feet from the floor to the underside of the dropped ceiling. At TELUS Sky this clear height is 9’ 8”. The additional height improves daylighting, providing more natural light and better ambience for the workspace.
Why is the air quality at TELUS Sky better than a standard building?
The raised floor system allows fresh air for the building to be brought in through the floor and exhausted out of the building at the core. This is done through a pressurized air system. Fresh air is continuously added to the space through the raised floor while older air is exhausted at the core. As the fresh air is slightly cooler than the existing interior air, it will tend to stay near the floor; whereas air that is eventually breathed by an occupant, or heated equipment, will rise and be exhausted out of the building at the ceiling.
Fresh air will naturally replace the old heated air that is rising. This ensures that 100% fresh air is constantly circulating as it naturally gravitates to areas where occupants are. This system is called displacement ventilation.
Conventional ventilation or forced-air ventilation takes air from a tenant space, filters it through an interior distribution system, mixes warm old air with fresh air, heats the mixed air and then circulates the mixed air back into the tenant spaces. As a result, the air being introduced into the tenant spaces is never 100% fresh air, but always a mixture of old air and recirculated air. A forced-heated air system is also impacted by other tenant uses in the building as the old air from all tenant spaces is mixed together, reheated and then re-circulated back into the building. A displacement ventilation system is far superior.
The increased level of fresh air supply at TELUS Sky means that an occupant is always enjoying clean air. Higher indoor air quality has many health benefits, resulting in fewer employee sick days, lower levels of absenteeism, and higher levels of productivity.
For more details on odours, smoke, bacteria, mould or other pathogens that can affect the quality of
indoor air, please see: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/indoorenv/BuildingVentilation.html.
What are the advantages of a raised floor compared to a standard office building?
Along with superior indoor air quality and thermal comfort, the raised floor at TELUS Sky offers improved flexibility. The raised floor is a structured floor that is fixed 14 to 18 inches above the concrete slab. The raised floor provides means to run electrical wiring, data wiring, and ventilation through the floor rather than in the ceiling or walls. With removable floor panels, the raised floor provides convenient access to the infrastructure allowing any electrical, data, or ventilation modifications or changes. For example, new floor plugs necessary for computers and lighting for a new department can be easily accommodated in a raised floor without new construction. New, under-floor wiring can be installed under the removable panels and floor plugs installed in the flooring.
Comparatively, in a typical office environment, new electrical must be run in the ceiling to the new location. Drywall drop ceilings have to be cut and patched and new walls need to be placed in order to run the electrical to a convenient location near the desks. Even with removable walls or an open floor space plan, configurations are limited in a standard office due to the location of power and ventilation.
As your business changes and the world changes, staffing and office modifications can be more easily accommodated. The BCO Guide to specifications notes that employee densities have increased from 180 sf per employee in 1997, to 127 sf per employee today. With office densities rapidly changing, your office environment should be flexible enough to meet a changing business climate.
How can TELUS Sky assist with improving employee productivity?
Most businesses spend three times as much on employee salaries over real estate. As a result, on any renewal or relocation, savings on productivity should be reviewed closely. A small savings in productivity can more than offset any increased costs of moving or rent as employee salaries encompass a much larger portion of a company’s annual expenses.
With TELUS Sky’s close proximity to housing, as well as direct access public transit and services, locating at TELUS Sky can reduce commute times. In addition, better air quality and thermal comfort is reported to improve productivity. Therefore, aligning corporate values with the workforce of today leads to improved hiring and employee retention which improves productivity. Recent reports cite that a LEED Platinum design can increase productivity by 5-10%.
Please see report: Green Buildings, Organizational Success, and Occupant Productivity, by Judith H. Heerwagen, Ph.D., Building Research and Information Vol. 28 (5), 2000:353-367” for further information