Fish Creek Calgary Public Library

Williams Engineering (WE) has been working on the Fish Creek Calgary Public Library (FCCPL) since 2007, when WE performed our first Building Envelope Investigation on the facility. This iconic building is a pyramidal-shaped library which first opened in 1985 and consists of three levels and a basement.

In 2007 WE identified that the steep slope, metal-clad roof assembly lacked continuity of air seal and that there was a lack of water shedding/waterproofing integrity. The lack of air seal integrity, in combination with the building stack effect, promoted significant energy loss through the roof assembly.

In 2009 WE was retained to provide thermal modelling of the roof assemblies. Two case studies were performed. The first was an addition of a new standing seam metal roof added onto the existing roof; the acoustic cellulose on the inner metal liner was untouched. The second was an addition of a new standing seam metal roof added onto the existing roof, the acoustic cellulose on the inner metal liner would have been removed, and 3 inches of sprayed polyurethane insulation applied as air/vapour barrier. The City of Calgary decided it would be best to completely replace the roof.

In 2012 WE was retained to provide both an energy audit and a water audit for the facility. As a result of the energy audit, recommendations for both electrical and mechanical upgrades were provided to FCCPL.

Later in 2012, WE provided structural, mechanical, electrical, building envelope and roofing engineering services for the design of the roof replacement and interior upgrades. The interior upgrades consisted of lighting changes to LED fixtures, a lighting control system was installed, replacement of boilers, heat exchangers, condensing units and the cooling coils that service air handling unit #1 and mechanical controls upgrade. The services provided for the roof replacement during the construction proved to be challenging because of the building’s unique pyramid shape and the steep 45-degree angle of the non-traversable Kalzip metal standing-seam roof. The roof observations needed to be conducted through modified rope access. This unique skill allowed WE’s building science technologist to thoroughly observe the roof and in turn, provide quality assurance observations to the client. The roof replacement and interior upgrades were completed in 2014.

Throughout 2014 and 2015, WE performed a follow-up energy model assessment to compare the energy performance of the facility before and after the major renovations. Our analysis included a review of the energy use for the year before the renovations as well as the year following the completion of the renovations. The energy use intensity (EUI) was used as the performance measurement for this comparison. The EUI for this facility the year prior to renovations was 1.36 GJ/m2, and the EUI for the year after the renovations was 0.953 GJ/m2. With the various upgrades that had been implemented, the energy performance of the library building improved by a factor of approximately 30%. WE worked with the Calgary Public Library to perform these energy assessments and facility upgrades to substantially increase the energy efficiency of the library.