Deep building retrofits

A deep building retrofit is a multi-year, large scale renovation project that includes multiple building repairs and upgrades. A deep building retrofit considers all building components and combines different repairs and upgrades into one large capital project. Deep building retrofits are becoming an industry standard to more efficiently repair and renew housing, increase energy savings, and create healthier and more comfortable homes for tenants. To date, TCHC has completed more than a dozen deep building retrofits. Where possible, TCHC will continue to invest in deep building retrofit projects that address many elements of our capital targets, including increasing energy savings, improving building conditions and making housing more accessible.

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    Benefits of deep building retrofits

    Cost effectiveness 

    Deep building retrofits provide ‘economies of scale’ for design and construction costs. By grouping repairs and upgrades into one project, TCHC can minimize total costs by reducing duplication in overhead project costs. 

    Project efficiencies  

    While invasive to tenants, deep building retrofits eliminate long standing “on and off” repairs in a building. Deep building retrofits allows for TCHC to complete work efficiently, minimizing disruptions in common spaces and better coordinating entries into tenant units. 

    Green buildings, climate change mitigation and resiliency 

    Deep building retrofit approach is used to improve a buildings energy performance. This is done by implementing individual repairs and upgrades at the same time to increase energy savings and reduce carbon emissions.  

    Alignment of capital planning targets 

    Deep building retrofits allow TCHC to more effectively achieve our capital planning targets by grouping repairs across all three targets into one project. This includes repairs and upgrades that:  

    • Reduce energy consumption by implementing upgrades and repairs that make our buildings more energy efficient;  

    • Improve building conditions and make homes healthier and more comfortable for tenants; and 

    • Implement accessibility improvements in common areas and tenant units so all tenants can participate and engage in community life.  

    To learn more about the capital planning targets, please visit our Capital Planning page.  

    Deep retrofit process

    Deep building retrofits take place in high-rise and mid-rise buildings where it is possible to combine energy efficiency upgrades with a buildings repair needs. These projects are selected where there is alignment with repair needs, energy targets and accessibility upgrades.  

    These retrofits include a variety of different projects, which are selected based on building and tenant needs. Deep building retrofit projects can include:  

    Mechanical system retrofits  

    • Improves boiler plant efficiency and zone level temperature control to reduce over heating  
    • Improves ventilation systems with reduced energy consumption 
    • Improves indoor environmental air quality for tenants  
    • Improves monitoring and verification with networking of building automation systems  
    • Improves energy performance with the use of higher efficiency equipment  

    Lighting & Electrical System Upgrades  

    • Includes LED lighting retrofits (building interior and exterior)  
    • Reduces electricity consumption through control systems  
    • Reduces overall GHG emissions and energy consumption 

    Envelope Restoration, Recladding & Insulation  

    • Improves durability of envelope and roofing systems  
    • Renews building appearance and aesthetics  
    • Reduces heat loss and gain, and improves tenant thermal comfort  
    • Reduces overall GHG emissions and energy consumption  

    New, High Performing Window Systems  

    • Improves air tightness and reduces heat loss  
    • Improves tenant thermal comfort and reduces noise and transmission  
    • Reduces overall GHG emissions and energy consumption  

    Interior Renovations and Accessibility Projects  

    • Improves quality of housing and living conditions for tenants through in-suite repairs and upgrades  
    • Ensures all common areas are accessible  
    • Renews building appearance and aesthetics  

    Deep building retrofits take place in occupied buildings where tenants continue to live. This can be disruptive to tenants, living in a building with large scale repairs. To best address these challenges and to reduce the potential negative impact on tenants, the Planned Project Services (PPS) team is in place to support tenants through the construction process. To learn more about our PPS team and tenant engagement during large and complex capital projects, please visit our PPS page.

    Learn more about some of our deep building retrofit projects