The City of Fredericton’s Northside Fire Station
The City of Fredericton is realizing energy savings at its new, comfortable, energy efficient Northside Fire Station. The Fire Station has two distinct areas – one includes a kitchen, a gym, locker rooms and sleeping quarters for the fire fighters and the other contains offices, a meeting room and a training room for administrative and instructive purposes.
Crews of eight fire fighters work long shifts at the fire station, occupying the 1800 square meter building 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. With its office and administrative space the building might also host as many as 50 individuals at any time during the week. Two large equipment bays account for roughly 1/3 of the total building area.
The building is heated by three condensing natural gas boilers, which feed hot water coils and in-floor heating. Water for domestic use is heated primarily by a heat exchanger, which interacts with the boilers, however hot water is also supplied by a number of solar thermal water heaters on the roof. Four energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) condition fresh air brought into the building with heat and moisture as needed throughout the seasons as part of the heat recovery ventilation system.
The Northside Fire Station successfully went through Efficiency NB’s Start Smart Modelling Path program. The program models buildings in reference to the 1997 Model National Energy Code of Canada for Buildings (MNECB) to establish annual energy savings and to demonstrate overall building performance of 30% or better than the Code’s minimum requirements. The Modelling Path program off-sets the costs associated with designing sustainable high efficiency buildings by providing financial incentives to buildings based on up to two times the estimated annual energy savings to a maximum of $60,000 per eligible building.
“We worked closely with Efficiency NB,” says Jihad El Zamer, the City of Fredericton’s Energy Analyst, “we are now very familiar with the programs and available incentives—all of the city’s new construction is as efficient as possible.” The Fire Station is also equipped with energy efficient appliances and low-flow plumbing fixtures.
With its efficient design and construction, the City of Fredericton’s Northside Fire Station is realizing annual estimated energy savings of 45% and annual energy cost savings of $23,895.
On top of energy savings, the Fire Station’s staff couldn’t be happier with the new station, says El Zamer. “The building is efficient and comfortable, and we learned from the old station how to better lay out this building.”
The fire fighters couldn’t be happier with the new station’s comfort levels thanks to high efficiency design features that provide thermal comfort in all seasons.
Working in one of the most energy efficient fire stations in the province is a source of pride for the firefighters, says El Zamer, and it has also had the effect of raising awareness about energy consumption amongst those who work in the building.
El Zamer stresses the value of building a tight, energy efficient building and of the importance of finding the right people to make that happen. “Like any other construction project, you need to have the right people to do the job, but overall the project went very smoothly and we are very happy with the results, we have one of the most energy efficient fire stations in the province.”