Kingston’s Invista Centre Received LEED Gold Certification

Published on: 2011/03/24 - in Releases

The INVISTA Centre aimed for silver, but got the gold – the building has received LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification, one level higher than expected.

“We are proud that the attention we put in to making the INVISTA Centre a truly sustainable facility have been recognized with this Gold Certification by the Canada Green Building Council,” says Cynthia Beach,  Commissioner, Sustainability & Growth.

As per City policy, the INVISTA Centre was built to meet LEED Silver Certification standards as specified by the Canada Green Building Council.  The building has now received official recognition that it meets the criteria for a LEED® Gold designation which acknowledges the design of the INVISTA Centre minimizes the building’s environmental impact and energy consumption.

The LEED® features of the INVISTA Centre were developed by a team of mechanical, electrical, automation and general contractors, and the City of Kingston. Being LEED® Gold at the INVISTA Centre means:

– Preserving Green Space: existing vegetation on the site remained undisturbed in all areas which were not developed as part of this project. Site landscaping included a selection of deciduous and coniferous native and drought-tolerant species that require no irrigation. That saves water.

– Using Natural Light: the Centre has a two-storey concourse filled with natural light from the front entrance and clerestory windows opposite the reception area. Daytime lighting from north-facing windows also fill the Whig and Ambassador rinks.  Natural light creates an enjoyable indoor environment for both visitors and staff – and it saves lots of energy.

– Protect the Night Sky: Exterior lighting has been designed to light the property (and not beyond) and does not exceed levels recommended by the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America. This saves energy and prevents light pollution that makes it hard to see the stars.

– Reducing Waste: During construction 90 per cent of the construction and land-clearing waste that would normally be sent to landfill was diverted through reduction, reuse or recycling of all major building materials, such as: wood, concrete, masonry and steel. The majority of construction materials have more than 15 per cent recycled content and more than 25 per cent of the building materials are regional – manufactured or harvested fewer than 800 km from theis site.

– Beating the Heat: Hot temperatures created by the sun beating down on dark surfaces live roofs and asphalt producing what is known as the “heat island effect” – a problem in most big cities. The INVISTA Centre’s white roofs are designed to reflect the sun’s energy back to reduce this effect.

– Managing Storm Water: Rain water that runs off the roofs and parking lots can carry pollutants to nearby watercourses. The INVISTA Centre’s linear pond system, located at the south-east corner of the site, holds storm water so that pollutants can settle out before flowing into the Little Cataraqui Creek System.  The linear layout of the storm water pond also minimizes the space required so that there is room for future playing fields.

– Reducing Energy Use with Variable Air Volume (VAV): When the INVISTA Centre is operating, air flow to occupied areas is regulated to keep temperatures and fresh air settings at comfortable levels. During unoccupied hours, air flow is reduced, saving significantly on the energy needed to heat or cool all that air .

– Keeping the Chemicals Out: It turns out that “new-car smell” isn’t good for you. Glues, paints, carpets, plastics, wood products and furniture can all contain potentially harmful synthetic chemicals that can be released into the indoor air of a new building.  During construction of the INVISTA Centre, special care was taken to select only building products and practices that keep unwanted chemicals like benzene, toluene, xylenes and many others out of the building. The INVISTA Centre also has a permanent indoor air quality monitoring system and a green housekeeping plan incorporating products with reduced content of potentially harmful chemicals.

– Recovering Waste Heat: Any ice rink needs a lot of energy to create and maintain skating surfaces. Waste heat from the INVISTA Centre’s refrigeration and ice-making machines is captured and re-used elsewhere in the building for heating air, water and even the floors in the  dressing rooms.

– Conserving Water: The INVISTA Centre uses more than 40 per cent less water than a conventional arena facility. It has waterless urinals and flow-conserving fixtures. Rainwater that falls on the roof is captured in an underground storage tank where it is re-used for flushing toilets. Controls for faucets and showers automatically shut-off.

– Less Energy = Fewer Green House Gas Emissions: Dressing room motion detectors tell the heating system when people are using them so that no energy is wasted adding extra heat to unoccupied rooms. In-floor heating from the facility’s ice-making plant maintains the dressing rooms’ space temperature and helps keep their floors dry. Warm air that is exhausted from the building must first pass through a heat exchanger to make sure heat is extracted and re-used. The main concourse air system uses evaporative condenser technology to achieve cooling efficiencies 25 per cent higher than conventional equipment. Meters monitor major electrical loads (such as mechanical and refrigeration systems) to ensure optimal energy efficiency.

– Remember the Ozone Layer: All the cooling equipment in the building is CFC and HCFC-free for zero ozone depletion potential.

For more on LEED and City policy see: