July 20, 2007
by Canadian Architect
The City of Brampton celebrated the best in construction and architecture in the Brampton Urban Design Awards. Among the recipients was an Award of Excellence for the headquarters building for Loblaw Companies Limited. Completed in 2005, the building houses 2,000 employees.
Designed by Sweeny Sterling Finlayson &Co Architects for owner/developer Orlando Corporation, the building incorporates &Cos green building systems that allow for a high level of energy efficiency. Some of these design features include daylighting strategies, underfloor distribution of air, power and data, and plug-and-play technology, as well as personal control of systems (individual HVAC and operable windows).
Aside from just being green, Sweeny Sterling Finlayson &Co Architects has designed this office building to set new standards in increasing employee happiness. Companies are investing more into their biggest resource: their people. This will be key in attracting and retaining knowledge workers.
A main focus of the building is a central atrium that highlights the strengths of the company and is the physical centre for the community of people that work in the facility. The large floor plates of 110,000 square feet allow for a low-rise building where people can meet and interact with one another, but also create very efficient and effective interior planning space.
Along with the green technologies and employee comfort features, the design of the building allows for future flexibility, and gives long-term cost savings, making this building valuable to future investors or developers.
The jury included Mayor Susan Fennell, Councillor Grant Gibson (Planning, Design & Development Committee chair), Lorne McCool (City Manager), John Corbett (Planning, Design & Development Commissioner) and George Dark (Partner, Urban Strategies). They especially liked a complementary piece of public art commemorating the areas rural heritage.
The submissions were to show excellence and innovation in design, and be in the spirit of the Six Pillars Strategic Plan, Flower City Strategy and the Development Design Guidelines. The award-winning entries demonstrated the Citys commitment to building attractive communities, with appealing character, strong identity and enhanced architectural design.
Sweeny Sterling Finlayson &Co Architects is also part of the design team and the green building consultant for the Telus ($250M) and RBC Towers ($400M), two of the three new office tower developments in Torontos downtown core. Both buildings are targeting LEED silver.