The Government of Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) are investing in community building retrofit projects from coast to coast to coast. The Ministry of Natural Resources and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), recently announced an investment of over $3.2 million for 16 municipally led projects.

“Whether big or small, communities are at the heart of climate action. With community buildings like arenas, pools and recreation centres emitting some of the highest levels of municipal greenhouse gas emissions, successful retrofit projects can have a significant impact on climate change efforts,” says Joanne Vanderheyden, president of FCM. “Together, we can improve our community infrastructure, accelerate the path to net-zero and meet Canada’s climate change goals.”

This investment comes from the Green Municipal Fund’s (GMF) Community Buildings Retrofit (CBR) initiative which enables communities to undertake retrofits and other upgrades to lower emissions and improve energy performance of community buildings.

The City of Dieppe, New Brunswick, receives $2 million to complete an energy retrofit of the Arthur-J.-LeBlanc Centre to help be more efficient for today and become carbon neutral down the road. This building includes two play surfaces, bleachers, two mechanical rooms, one electrical room, changing rooms, offices, a canteen and washrooms. Since this building currently uses significant energy due to its age, these retrofits represent an important opportunity to address an existing financial, technological, and environmental challenge for the City.

To improve its energy performance, the city will implement seventeen strategies for the building’s renovation and transformation. This project should generate an energy use reduction of 44 per cent, and this will translate into an estimated GHG emission reduction of 307 tons, or 46 per cent.

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This project has the potential to inspire other municipalities that are building new municipal infrastructure to achieve net-zero energy objectives. The use of innovative construction materials to design buildings with net-zero energy consumption will serve as a proof of concept for contractors, developers and local elected officials, and will contribute to dispelling myths that net-zero-energy buildings are too difficult or expensive to build. The project follows a feasibility study, also funded through the Green Municipal Fund. It is a prime example of GMF’s ability to work with municipalities at all stages of their sustainable journey.

“Dieppe’s vision is to be a welcoming, dynamic and ecologically responsible city, and this funding will take us one step closer to achieving the environmental part of that vision. The Arthur-J.-LeBlanc Centre has been an integral part of the active life of our community for many years, and we are proud to be able to make a number of energy efficient improvements to it. A huge thank you to the Green Municipal Fund for believing in our project,” says Yvon Lapierre, Mayor of the City of Dieppe.

Other projects include the following:

The Town of Truro, Nova Scotia, receives $365,200 to improve the energy efficiency of the Douglas Street Recreation Centre as well as their police station. Planned upgrades include installing LED lighting, replacing oil-fired boilers and hot water heaters, replacing an existing air handling unit with a new variable speed model, installing a building automation system and building envelope improvements.

The Town of Tisdale, Saskatchewan, receives $24,000 to complete a GHG reduction pathway feasibility study to help integrate energy efficiency and GHG emissions reductions into long-term planning for managing the RECplex, the town’s multipurpose facility.

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The Town of Comox, British Columbia, receives $69,600 to complete a study on integrating energy and GHG emissions reductions into long-term plans for managing community buildings.

The complete list of funded projects is included in the backgrounder.

The Community Buildings Retrofit initiative is part of a $950 million federal investment in the Green Municipal Fund designed to scale up energy-efficiency and lower emissions across Canada.

Featured image credit: Government of New Brunswick.

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