A deep energy retrofit at Montreal Olympic Park has received a major honour for the second time in recent months at the ASHRAE 2019 Winter Conference, now underway in Atlanta, Georgia. Engineers Dominic Desjardins, Maurice Landry and André-Benoît Allard were named Technology Award winners in the existing public assembly category for comprehensive upgrades to the aging thermal plant and systems and equipment serving Olympic Stadium, its adjoining tower and associated aquatic complex. This follows last fall’s Canadian Energy Project of the Year award from the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE).
The Technology Awards recognize ASHRAE members for innovative projects that deliver proven occupant comfort, indoor air quality and energy conservation, backed up with one year of operating data. At Montreal Olympic Park evidence shows a 31 per cent cut in energy consumption, a 26 per cent reduction in energy costs and a 57 per cent drop in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Efficiencies and environmental improvements came through the decommissioning of the circa 1970s steam plant, installation of new high-efficiency boilers, chillers and heat recovery equipment, along with new controls and lighting upgrades for the stadium and aquatic centre. A combination of guaranteed incentives, government funding and projected energy savings underpinned the business case for the 36-month project with the integrated energy performance contractor, Ecosystem. The $6.5-million capital investment is expected to have a 12-year payback.
“In the past, we mainly did one-for-one equipment replacement at the Olympic Park. This meant that no one examined the systems as a whole and their interactions. By taking a closer look and speaking with specialists in the field, we quickly realized it was advantageous to carry out all these projects at the same time,” Maurice Landry, vice president, construction and maintenance, at Olympic Park recalls in an interview posted on the Ecosystem website.
“Considerable budgets had already been forecasted for projects that, at the time, were seen as independent from one another,” adds Olympic Park’s energy manager, Dominic Desjardins. “Consolidating all our projects resulted in a much more coherent design. Project implementation was also more efficient since we only needed to manage one project rather than several smaller ones.”
ASHRAE Technology Awards were also handed out to seven other engineering teams, including three in the commercial building category for new, existing and existing building commissioning projects. The remainder went to institutional buildings including educational facilities, a business/technology incubator and a library.