Federal and provincial dollars are coming to improve the energy efficiency of Nelson’s 87-year-old Civic Centre.
According to a news release the building, which is home to the Civic Theatre, an ice arena, and a gymnastics club, will receive upgrades to its envelope, roof, windows, doors and mechanical systems.
“This grand old building has been serving Nelson for 87 years, and now we have the opportunity to work together to make it more accessible and comfortable for all,” says councilor Keith Page.
Currently, the facility’s concrete walls have no insulation, the roof structure has minimal insulation, and the air-handling units are outdated, providing air circulation to only some areas of the building.
The building’s exterior walls will be enveloped with an insulated, high-efficiency skin that will reduce energy requirements and protect deteriorating concrete from freeze-thaw cycles. Energy-recovery ventilators and a heat-recovery chiller will provide heating and cooling capacity, reducing dependency on fossil fuels.
“This building now represents one of the biggest emissions generators in the city, the other one being personal transportation,” says Page.
The upgrades are expected to reduce the building’s natural gas consumption and carbon emissions by approximately two-thirds. According to the release, the Civic Centre is the City of Nelson’s highest-emitting building.
Cash for the project comes from the CleanBC Communities Fund. The province is providing $2.82 million, the city $1.4 million, and the feds $1 million.
“The Civic Centre building is a valued cultural and recreational facility that has served our regional community well for almost 90 years since it opened in 1935,” Mayor John Dooley said in the release.
“This project will substantially improve the comfort and accessibility of the building, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Improving the energy performance of our buildings is a key component of NelsonNext, our ambitious climate action plan.”