Kearns Mancini Architects Inc. is converting the former library in the South Building at UTM into classrooms and faculty and administrative offices. This LEED Gold renovation has a large square floor plan (see right) which raised several key issues for the design approach. It was determined that the main corridor should be enhanced by adding features such as suspended ceilings and timber cladding giving frontage and delineation to many departments to be housed in the new space.

One objective is to maximize daylight opportunities into the large floor plate; so the plan incorporates skylights into many areas. A large portion of the space slated for renovation is designated for the offices of the dean, vice-president and principal, campus police and Departments of Geography and Sociology. This area will also include a corridor wide enough to double as a venue for events and exhibits terminating at a two-story sky lit atrium filled with greenery. Adjacent to the atrium there will be a kitchenette and lounge for staff as well as a new conference room. The architects are working to achieve a LEED Gold rating with the renovation. To meet the criteria set out by this rating system for environmentally sustainable construction, recycled materials and those that can be rapidly replenished, such as bamboo and wood from managed forests, as well as low-consumption plumbing fixtures are being incorporated into the renovation project. A sensor-activated lighting system will switch off lights automatically when certain areas are not occupied. Domed skylights will increase the inflow of daylight and clerestory skylights, which are designed to keep out heat in summer and maximize light in winter, will help to maximize the efficiency of the building’s cooling and heating systems.>

The UTM W.G. Davis Building Phase 1 Renovation was recently honoured by Interior Design Magazine with an Award of Honour for the 2011 Best of Year Awards.

Location: Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Status: Completed 2009
Client: University of Toronto
Gross sq.ft: 35,300 sq.ft.
Project value: $6 Million
LEED Certification: LEED Gold
Awards: Interior Design | Best of Year Award | Award of Honour | 2011
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