Buildings as an Agent of Change: The Case for Green Retrofits Report

On June 27th 2019, Students in the Design for Sustainability Workshop course in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University participated in a one-day design charrette in collaboration with Sustainable Buildings Canada (SBC). The charrette focused on Green Building Retrofits. We chose this theme because upgrading Canada’s existing building stock is an environmental imperative; a challenge that we must prioritize in the context of sustainability planning for the decade ahead. In preparation for the design charrette, students in the class were divided into five groups. Each group explored a different aspect of the retrofit challenge.

The student research topics were:

  • Business Case for Green Retrofits
  • Culture and Heritage
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • Technology
  • Interiors and Adaptive Reuse

On the day of the charrette, following introductory presentations by SBC Board members and other experts, the student groups shared short summaries of their research findings. They also had questions for the experts. Discussions continued over lunch and then the professionals worked with each of the student groups to answer their questions and provide further insights on each of the research topics.

The charrette activities and insights emerging from the group discussions are documented in this report.

Read the full report here