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    Found 4 results

    1. Under heavy renovation at the moment. They are adding new street-level locations despite 75% availability (only the SAQ remains) and the Stylexchange failure. Will they shake off the cockroach stigma? This next picture shows flooring being put on top of the old bagel place. New Taiwanese place where Grumman used to be
    2. A cautionary tale: Cheap glass window wall is not suitable for our climate http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/story/2011/11/13/tor-glass-walled-condos.html Thermal Window Failure: How it Happens A Developer's Change of Heart Engineering Buildings to Perform Audio and Video Highlights Many of the glass condominium towers filling up the Toronto skyline will fail 15 to 25 years after they’re built, perhaps even earlier, and will need retrofits costing millions of dollars, say some industry experts. Buyers drawn to glass-walled condos because of the price and spectacular views may soon find themselves grappling with major problems including: Insulation failures. Water leaks. Skyrocketing energy and maintenance costs. Declining resale potential. Glass condominiums — known in the industry as window walls — have floor-to-ceiling glass, so essentially the window becomes the wall. Window walls generally span from the top of the concrete slab right to the bottom. The slow-motion failure of Toronto's glass condos http://www.cbc.ca/toronto/features/condos/ Over the past decade, Toronto's building boom has been dominated by tall glass condo towers. They've transformed the look of city skylines all over the world – especially here in Toronto, where according to Emporis.comwe've built more towers per capita than any other city in North America. But it may be a trend that puts style over substance. A small but growing chorus is sounding the alarm about the future of these buildings. Building scientists have known for a long time that glass-walled structures are less energy efficient than the stone and concrete buildings that were put up forty of fifty years ago. But the market demand for glass combined with the relatively low cost of glass-wall construction means the building industry has been happy to oblige. However, industry insiders warn that as energy costs climb, glass towers may become the "pariah" buildings of the future. In these stories, we explore the hidden costs of building with glass and the slow-motion failure of window walls. We also look at why the Ontario Building Code failed to make energy performance a priority, and meet a developer who is reconsidering the construction of such buildings. Building science consultant and University of Waterloo professor John Straube wrote a paper called Can Highly Glazed Building Facades be Green? View Paper [1MB .pdf] http://www.cbc.ca/toronto/features/condos/pdf/condo_conundrum.pdf John Straube John Straube, a building science consultant and professor in the Department of Civil Engineering and School of Architecture at the University of Waterloo says glass condos are a "perfect reflection" of a society that's found it easier to throw things away than to build them to last. "We have a hard time," says Straube, "thinking five years when we buy a laptop, ten years when we buy a car. With these buildings – both the skin and the mechanical systems are going to have to be redone in a 25-year time frame. The concrete structure will be there a long time but in 20, 25 years time, we are going to see a lot of scaffolding on the outside of the buildings as we replace the glazing, sealants and the glass itself." Although falling glass from the condo balconies has attracted most of the public attention during the summer of 2011, building scientists warn that the long-term failure of the glass structures – although less sensational – is much more serious. More: how thermal window failure happens Window-wall systems Most of them are built using window-wall systems which have next to no insulation value, except for a half inch of heavy gas between the two panels of glass. As John Straube points out, what glass does really well is conduct heat. "A little experiment anyone can do at home is get a glass for drinking. Pour boiling water into it, and try and pick it up. You'll burn yourself." Straube, along with building science colleagues like Ted Kesik at the John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture at the University of Toronto, warns that as energy costs climb, the costs of heating and cooling glass towers will increase the monthly fees. Kesik wrote a paper called The Glass Condo Conundrum (250KB .pdf) on the potential liabilities of glass towers. The Glass Condo Conundrum It's not just the energy costs. Glass structures require major maintenance much earlier in their life cycle than a traditional structure made of precast or brick. Straube warns maintenance costs will skyrocket in 20 to 25 years' time as the buildings age. The windows will begin to fog up, and the cost of replacing entire walls of glass will be prohibitive on highrise structures that can only be accessed from swing stages. Building scientists talk about the life cycle of a building, akin to a human life cycle, language that encourages people like Straube to see a building as an organism. "It has lungs," says Straube, "it has veins, all of that stuff – it has a structural skeleton." To Straube, a building is a living, breathing thing, enclosing the people who live inside. Building with glass walls is to miss the main point of a building, says Straube – sacrificing the protection that is a building's first duty for a beauty that is only skin-deep. "It's almost derogatory in my world," says Straube, "to forget about everything else that's part of experiencing a building. I like to think what is this building going to be like on a dark and stormy night. In our climate particularly, we care about that. It's life and death." Audio Introduction Matt Galloway spoke with Mary Wiens about the series. Listen (runs 6:11) Part One Mary Wiens introduces us to people concerned about the hidden costs of glass walls. Listen (runs 6:48) Part Two A developer of glass towers tells us why he will never put up another one. Listen (runs 6:28) Part Three Mary Wiens asks engineers about the rise, and repair, of the glass towers. Listen (runs 6:38) Part Four Mary Wiens tours a new condominium with a young couple and their real estate agent. Listen (runs 6:50) Part Five Mary Wiens tells us about a solution that has helped produce more efficient cars and appliances, an approach that may have potential for condominiums as well. Listen (runs 6:59) Video Part One: How glass fails John Lancaster talks to David House about the potential problems facing owners of glass condos in Toronto. Watch (runs 3:16) Part Two: Hidden costs Kamela and Jason Hurlbut are looking for their first dream home but there are hidden costs to living in Toronto's glass condos. Watch (runs 3:19) Part Three: The ripple effect If I can't sell my condo, I can't buy your home. John Lancaster looks at the possible ripple effect in Toronto's real estate market. Watch (runs 3:48)
    3. Twin Cities bridge debuts 30-foot tall pollution-sucking sculptures de Autoblog de Jeremy Korzeniewski Filed under: Etc., Green Two statues have debuted on Minnesota's new Interstate 35W Bridge that are shaped to look like the international cartographic symbol for water. Why? Besides mimicking the look of the Mississippi River as it passes through Minneapolis, the new sculptures are made from a type of concrete that is photocatalytic, meaning they will be able to convert gases like carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides and sulfur dioxide to higher oxidized states, making them less damaging to the environment. Another benefit of the new concrete mixture is that it never looks old as it maintains a white oxidized color on its outer skin. The opening of the new I-35W St. Anthony Falls Bridge also has a deeper meaning, since it replaces the one that tragically collapsed about a year ago from a structural failure. The new one was erected so fast because the original was used by over 140,000 cars per day. Despite how quickly it was built, the new bridge has a 100-year life span, supports ten lanes of traffic thanks to an extra 76 feet of width, and has shoulders on both sides where the old one didn't - not to mention it cleans the air with art. Thanks for the tip, Terry! http://www.autoblog.com/2008/10/07/twin-cities-bridge-debuts-30-foot-tall-pollution-sucking-sculptu/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+weblogsinc/autoblog+(Autoblog)
    4. The Ugly Canadian at global trade talks in Geneva Jeffrey Simpson Editorial - The Globe and Mail mardi 29 juillet 2008 When is failure a success ? For the Harper government, as for previous Canadian governments, failure in international trade negotiations means political success. Failure prevents the government from having to face the ire and political retribution of Canada’s supply management groups, which govern the production, sale and pricing of eggs, poultry and dairy. These are the lobby groups Canadian politicians bow down before. In 2005, the House of Commons unanimously passed a resolution instructing negotiators to defend the existing supply management arrangements. Any change, according to the Commons, would be unacceptable. This from a group who couldn’t agree today is Tuesday. Canada’s negotiators at the last-gasp meetings in Geneva this week are taking a position to defend supply management that will in effect lead to failure at the talks. After all, how do you negotiate in good faith when your negotiating instructions are that no changes must be made, ever, under any circumstances to the status quo ? Whenever International Trade Minister Michael Fortier and Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz appear in public in Geneva, they are questioned, badgered and otherwise verbally accosted by the legions of supply management representatives who have descended on the city. Back home, these organizations issue threatening press releases at the hint of change to their cozy arrangements. On Saturday, when it looked as if progress was being made at the talks, Quebec’s farmers’ union denounced an "agreement concocted in secret" and demanded that Canada repudiate it. What are the supply management arrangements ? In part, they allow tiny levels of imports, after which tariffs are imposed at 299 per cent for butter, 246 per cent for cheese and at astronomical levels for other dairy products, turkeys, chickens, eggs. Every other advanced industrial country, including the United States and European Union members, are proposing cuts to subsidies and other barriers. Only Canada is against any change in its domestic arrangements. Predictably, Canada is completely isolated at Geneva. Canada stands hypocritically before the world. Canada’s negotiators demand that other countries lower their subsides and protection for agricultural products that we export (grains, pork, cattle and the like), while insisting that whole sections of Canada’s agricultural market remain effectively closed to imports. This hypocrisy has been widely noted abroad, but it apparently causes no ripples in Canada, where people either do not know about it or believe that Canada, being a moral superpower in its own mind, can afford the occasional lapse from unsullied virtue. An early text of a possible agreement would have lowered tariffs gradually by 23 per cent, thereby still leaving them for many products in the range of 150 to 225 per cent - still astronomically higher than for any other products. This possibility sent the supply-managed groups into paroxysms of anger. Dairy, poultry and egg producers jointly said such proposals would "destroy our farms by allowing Canada to be flooded with imported food." Such grotesque hyperbole is the stock and trade of these groups, but it frightens politicians of all stripes. Stephen Harper’s government is supposed to be a free-trading group, proposing new deals with Colombia, Peru, the Caribbean and the EU, and waxing indignant at any threats to NAFTA. But when it comes to supply management, it nervously eyes seats it must win in rural Quebec and Ontario and acquiesces to the demands of farmers. Quebec is the greatest beneficiary of supply management, since 47 per cent of the quota for industrial milk used to make butter, cheese, yogurt and other dairy products belongs to Quebec farmers. Half of Quebec’s production is therefore "exported" to the rest of Canada, which under supply management cannot import the same product from cheaper suppliers. It’s an across-the-board, across-the-country racket. Political will being completely absent in Canada, the only hope for trimming supply management lies in success at the WTO. If international trade talks succeed, Canada could never walk away from the entire agreement. If Canada tried, it would be outside the entire framework of international trading rules, a disaster for a trade-dependent economy. So what Canadian ministers must do, as they are doing now, is put forth a position on supply management designed to prevent success while publicly insisting on striving for it. It is the Ugly Canadian position.
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