The NCC is building a new service, maintenance and storage (SMS) building at Rideau Hall. It will be the Government of Canada’s first zero-carbon building in the National Capital Region.

About the project

Rendering of the building
Credit: grc architects

The new SMS building will be both a working space and a storage space. It will be used by the operations and maintenance teams.

The two-level building will include the following:

  • vehicle storage
  • washing bay
  • repair garage working area
  • tool and equipment storage area
  • storage space

The building will be semi-conditioned, with tempered indoor temperatures in winter and no air conditioning in summer. Energy modelling is part of the Net Zero Carbon Standard that is an integral component of the facility’s design.

A zero-carbon building

The building will be the NCC’s first certified zero-carbon building (ZCB). The design portion of the building has received the Zero Carbon Building–Design certification.

Achieving the ZCB standard at Rideau Hall is part of the NCC’s goal of reducing its carbon footprint and the amount of waste created on the lands it manages. Learn more about these initiatives under the “Low-carbon government” goal.

The ZCB design surpasses building code standards. Also, the standard will lower our energy demands, as it requires the building to have on-site energy generation. In this case, the SMS building will have a solar array installed on the roof.

Each building allowed to be constructed at suboptimal efficiency is a 50-plus-year liability in a world that needs to be almost fully decarbonized within the next 30 years.”  
Pembina Institute

To meet the ZCB requirements,

  • the building must produce renewable energy (e.g. through solar panels on the roof);
  • it must have a low energy demand;
  • its exterior walls, foundations, roofs, windows and doors must be high performing; and
  • the materials chosen must need little energy to be produced.

In addition to the ZCB requirements, the NCC is also ensuring that the design must plan for a future switch to geothermal heating.

Canada Green Building Council’s Zero Carbon Building Program

Process and timeline

June 2019
Final design approved by the NCC Board of Directors.

May–June 2020: Completed
Implementation of the site soil removal. Preparations to support construction, including removal of contaminated soils and rock breaking.

July 2020–summer 2021
Design and construction of the SMS building.

More information

The previous and existing NCC accommodations in the operations zone at Rideau Hall were inadequate to properly support the work of the operations and maintenance staff. The staff need more space for administration, operations and storage. They also need repair garages, workshops and change facilities.

The current workspaces are inadequate, and offices are spread over five buildings, including rented trailers.