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Bill Woodward School, located in Anzac Alberta, is a new facility designed to satisfy the needs of the local school board and to do so in an environmentally responsive way.

The concept is a core facility with building modules that are re-useable when no longer needed on a specific site and are therefor available to be reused elsewhere. This flexibility in allowing the design to respond directly to the changing population’s classroom needs also applies to the programmatic possibilities inherent in the core spaces, which could be adapted to more community uses as the population ages and the modulars are no longer needed.

This approach, of designing with the larger context in mind, can also be seen in how the school was sited in relation to its neighbours. By choosing to orient the school with its front entrance towards Christina Ave. it was felt that it could have a relationship in close proximity to the adjacent elementary school, thereby affording that existing school a share in the new programmatic opportunities available in the new school. It is believed that “linking” the schools this way helps to create new connections which contribute to a communities social capital that is recognized as one of the three essential pillars of truly sustainable developments.

The concern with reducing the buildings environmental impact was behind many of the strategies employed by the owner and design group, foremost of which were the energy efficiency measures designed into the facility.

Computer energy modeling shows the building to have a 56% increase in energy efficiency over the baseline building which is sufficient to earn it 80% of the available credit points for energy efficiency. Efforts were also made to reduce the environmental impact of transportation to the site during construction. The school targeted a regional transportation credit for the amount of local materials it incorporated into its construction.

Secure bike storage with access to showers for the staff, and preferred parking for carpools and electrical vehicles whose stall had dedicated charging plugs was provided in order to encourage the use of alternate transportation to the site. The impact on water resources was reduced by implementing water reduction strategies both in the building and in it’s landscape design. Strategies included installing water conserving fixtures and drought resistant landscaping. These measures resulted in a significant 46% reduction in water consumption over a baseline comparison and positioned the building to achieve an Innovation in Design credit as acknowledgement for this significant level of reduction.

Environmental impacts were further reduced by controlling erosion and sedimentation by implementing a plan during construction which limited site pollutants from leaving the site and by implementing an indoor air quality program designed to help sustain the comfort and well being of construction workers and building occupants. Impacts due to lighting requirements were decreased by installing multi-level controls in all classrooms which allows illumination levels to be varied with changing tasks. Daylight sensors were provided for controllability of fluorescent lighting within larger areas in order to adjust the level of light automatically depending on the amount of natural light available.

In addition to contributing to energy savings, individual control over lighting in perimeter spaces combined with individual thermal control through the use of opening windows put the design on track to achieve a credit for contributing to occupant well being stemming from having this individual control over comfort levels. Further reductions in environmental impacts were realized in the design of the site lighting which controls or eliminates light trespass from the building and the site and reduces the development’s impact on nocturnal environments by improving night sky access.


Sustainable Sites

Site Selection

Development Density

Redevelopment of Containment Sites

Alternative Transport – Public Transportation Access

Alternative Transport – Bicycle Storage & Changing Rooms

Alternative Transport – Alternative Fuel Vehicles

Alternative Transport – Carpool Parking

Reduced Site Disturbance – Protect or Restore Open Space

Reduced Site Disturbance – Development Footprint

Stormwater Management – Rate and Quantity

Stormwater Management – Treatment

Heat Island Effect – Roof

Heat Island Effect – Non Roof

Light Pollution Reduction

 1 / 14 Possible Points

Water Efficiency

Water Efficiency Landscaping – Reduce by 50%

Water Efficiency Landscaping – No Potable Use or No Irrigation

Innovation Wastewater Technologies

Water Use Reduction – 20% Reduction

Water Use Reduction – 30% Reduction

4 /5 Possible Points

Energy and Atmosphere

Optimize Energy Performance – 24% to 29% Energy Cost Saving

Optimize Energy Performance – 33% to 38% Energy Cost Saving

Optimize Energy Performance – 42% to 47% Energy Cost Saving

Optimize Energy Performance – 51% to 55% Energy Cost Saving

Optimize Energy Performance – 60% to 64% Energy Cost Saving

Renewable Energy – 5%

Renewable Energy – 10%

Renewable Energy – 20%

Best Practice Commissioning

Ozone Protection

Measurement & Verification

Green Power - 2 Year Purchase

9 /17 Possible Points

Materials & Resources

Building Reuse – Maintain 75% of Existing Shell

Building Reuse – Maintain 95% of Existing Shell

Building Reuse – Maintain 50% of Interior Non-Structural Elements

Construction Waste Management – Divert 50%

Construction Waste Management – Divert 75%

Resource Reuse – Specify 5%

Resource Reuse – Specify 10%

Recycled Content – Specify 7.5%

Recycled Content – Specify 15%

Locally Regional Materials – of 20% or Above, 50% Harvested Locally

Rapidly Renewable Materials

Certified Wood

Durable Building

4 / 14 Possible Points

Indoor Environmental Quality

Carbon Dioxide Monitoring

Increase Ventilation Effectiveness

Construction IAQ Manageable Plan – During Construction

Construction IAQ Manageable Plan – Before Occupancy

Low-Emitting Materials – Adhesives & Sealers

Low-Emitting Materials – Paints and Coating

Low-Emitting Materials – Carpet

Low-Emitting Materials – Composite Wood and Laminate Adhesives

Indoor Chemical & Pollutant Source Control

Controllability of Systems – Perimeter

Controllability of Systems – Non-Perimeter

Thermal Comfort – Comply with ASHRAE 55-2004

Thermal Comfort – Permanent Monitoring System

Daylight & Views – Daylight 75% of Spaces

Daylight & Views – Views for 90% of Spaces

7 /15 Possible Points

Innovation & Design Process

Innovation in Design

Innovation in Design – Exemplary Performance: Water Reduction 40%

Innovation in Design – Green Housekeeping Policy

Innovation in Design – Green Power

LEED™ Accredited Professional

2 /5 Possible Points

Final Score: 27/70