warehouse

Green goals for adaptive reuse of vacant Hamilton warehouse

New workplace signals city's emerging green economy
Thursday, August 19, 2021

A vacant industrial warehouse in Hamilton’s East Bayfront neighbourhood is transforming into a sustainable waste management facility that will produce about $2 million worth of organic fertilizer daily.

ZAS Architects designed the new space for SusGlobal Energy (SusGlobal), a renewables company that converts green bin waste into pathogen-free liquid organic fertilizer. SusGlobal is expanding its Ontario operations and recently bought the site with environmental compliance approvals.

The adaptive reuse of the 40,000-square-foot, former animal pellet plant will retain the structural skeleton of the existing warehouse tower and re-clad the exterior facade with transparent materials. An 11,000 square-foot addition will add light-filled office space and labs for SusGlobal’s ongoing research and development.

“The design of SusGlobal’s new facility in Hamilton East Bayfront embraces the past and celebrates the future, creating a healthy and wellness-focused workplace that signals the changing face of Hamilton’s industries and its emerging green economy,” says Paul Stevens, senior principal, ZAS Architects. “This project also provides an opportunity to rethink how we approach the design of sustainable waste management facilities as integral sites in our city landscape.”

Once completed in 2022, the new facility will run 24-hours per day, seven days per week with the annual capacity to process 65,000 metric tonnes of organic waste indoors with no odours, converting municipal green bin waste into a regenerative, pathogen-free organic liquid fertilizer and other organic agricultural products.

Over the past several years, the steel-dominated industrial hub as it was once known, has seen much transformation as other long-vacant buildings are revived into modern spaces and the city attracts new industries, from artists to the tech community.

This specific expansion is a strategic move based on proximity to agricultural clients, such as wineries and cannabis growers in the Hamilton-Niagara region and convenient access to municipal clients in Southern Ontario.

“We are thrilled to be working with award-winning ZAS Architects who are on the leading edge of creating healthy workplaces that support innovation and environmental stewardship,” says Marc Hazout, president and CEO of SusGlobal. “ZAS’s approach to healthy building design has been a guiding principle throughout the process, and we are excited to give SusGlobal more prominent visibility in Ontario.”

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