Churchill Northern Studies Centre – Manitoba Awards of Excellence in Consulting Engineering – Award of Excellence, Building Engineering

Provided significant energy and water savings, dramatically reducing utility costs, and creating an attractive and productive work environment.

Sub-Arctic Project Wins Manitoba Consulting Engineer Award

The Churchill Northern Studies Centre (CNSC) was the sole Award of Excellence winner in the Building Engineering category at the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies Manitoba Chapter Awards, presented in late April. Prairie Architects delivered the architectural design, while Enermodal Engineering, a member of MMM Group, provided mechanical/electrical design services.

In the summer of 2011, the CNSC moved into their new 27,800 ft2 facility, in an arctic location where conditions of -40oC and 140 km/h winds are the norm. The building is nearly completely off-grid and is designed for 88 visiting scientists and 12 staff working year-round on sub-arctic scientific research and education. Facilities include large and small dry laboratories, dorm-style lodging rooms, two classrooms, a gift shop, an observation dome, a full-service commercial kitchen, a library, herbarium, a helicopter landing pad, and a garage.

The average building-wide lighting power density is a mere 7.7 W/m2 , which is 30% below ASHRAE 90.1-2007 levels for an office/lab/dormitory building using the building area method.

The old facility had to truck water 20 km from town, then truck back the sewage. The most significant measure is two large composting systems serving waterless toilets and urinals. Wastewater is treated on-site to tertiary quality by two 5,000 L biofiltration vessels indoors, and two area bed sand dispersal fields outdoors, made of manufactured sand and woodchip-and-sand layers.