Sugar Wharf Condominiums (Phase 1) | 231m | 70s | Menkes | a—A

modernizt

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The SLC is literally just curtain wall. You can look at the top mullion and its clearly nailed into the ceiling with a gasket strip. The concrete slab is continuous from outside the building envelope to inside the envelope. That's not just thermal bridging but also a literal "cold" mass being thrust into the building. Before the panelling went up you could see this more clearly. Anecdotally, due to how cold it is, and how difficult it is to heat, they're only letting people go through 1 set of doors, despite the code mandating that there should be like 3 or 4.

One should look at the ground floor specifically because it is an atrium - a big space to regulate temperature and provide energy for. While a building is a collective system, you can certainly point to specific weakpoints in the system as bringing down the overall performance. The upper floors are wholly contained and are not the issue here.

Sure, one could say that the SLC is still an energy efficient building given the code and regulations at the time of construction, but the point is if we made even more stringent regulations, it can curb creative and innovative designs like the SLC.

You are conflating things. Nobody in the world of building science is calling for atriums or spaces of assembly to be banned. The envelope of said spaces should be improved, but spaces like the atrium of the SLC are not at risk in any way. In fact, an assembly space like a lobby at grade, or retail at grade, are very appropriate spaces to allocate your glazing, along street frontages, or interfacing with a public ROW.

Additionally, thermal bridging such as that at the ground level of the SLC is not necessary to good design. That atrium/lobby space could have been designed and detailed to look nearly identical but with thermal bridging eliminated. The "innovative" design language would not be compromised if that was done, and legislation to improve thermal performance would work in its favour.

As for the upper levels, we disagree again. The concrete slabs may be "wholly contained" behind the curtain wall but there is a ton of thermal bridging inherent to the glazing system and the insulating value of that curtainwall is poor. Even the idea that the frit pattern (while attractive) is a sustainability feature is hard to argue and hardly innovative. I would argue that the real innovation at SLC (a project I like by the way) would have been the same great open atrium space but less glazing (or a high performance triple glazed curtainwall) for the upper levels.

The atrium is not the poorly performing part of the project, even if it (like most buildings, by the way) features some thermal bridging. It's the upper levels that are more problematic and which stricter codes could have in fact forced a more innovative and sustainable design.

The idea that because it's wrapped in curtainwall means it's "wholly contained" and that stricter codes would have meant the atrium or innovative design would have been restricted are both equally ridiculous. I'm not picking on what you're saying to be argumentative, but for the sake of other people reading this discussion, because your use of terminology and logic are not sound and I can see that you are conflating the issues.

TL;DR, to summarize:
- Spaces of assembly such as lobbies, while more energy intensive in some ways, are not under fire from stricter codes. Buildings will always be allowed to have them.
- Thermal bridging is not inherent to design, is easy to eliminate, and with stricter codes for energy performance, will be less and less common as designers are pushed to detail more carefully, for higher energy performance. This would not change the look or feel of a space.
- As an addendum: a little bit of thermal bridging in the lobby of the SLC is NOTHING compared to the vast amounts of energy wasted by having the entire upper mass clad in curtainwall. It can't even be compared. That said, even with stricter code, the upper mass could still be fully glazed, but would require an even higher-performing system if it was a new building approved in the future. There is always an answer, and innovation will survive stricter codes - I would argue it will in fact make for greater innovation as developers are pushed to actually consider and use the high-performance systems that architects are taught to use, and wish to use for their designs.

I don't mean to derail the thread with a huge post, but I wanted to clarify a few things. I agree with the suggestion for a thread to discuss issues of building code, energy performance targets, etc. If anyone is curious about this stuff, feel free to PM me. Always down for a good chat about AEC in Toronto, although it's frustratingly difficult to share anecdotes from the industry if one wants to remain somewhat anonymous and of course protect their work.
 
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Big Daddy

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Pretty much like every development on the waterfront so far. For some reason developers don't feel that this place is worthy of their best work.

To be fair, the architect is given parameters by the developer and the building cost of construction must fit within a prescribed budget. Don't yell at the architects, it's the greedy developers that should be receiving your anger.
 

salsa

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To be fair, the architect is given parameters by the developer and the building cost of construction must fit within a prescribed budget. Don't yell at the architects, it's the greedy developers that should be receiving your anger.

Hence my post was directed at developers, not architects. :)
 

cd concept

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Just imagine if there was a major downtown explosion like the one in China. A great amount of curtain walls would be damage. Not to mention the all the injured people. Developers should be better curtain walls for the future. Mother nature becoming more violent these days!!
 

maestro

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I would say much of the shortcomings here comes from the master plan . Great designs would only enhance the look of the usual towers plopped on large scale podiums. I don't think we can fairly blame our overtaxed planners for this but, it is their area of involvement.

It's not fair either to say the developer, Menkes, are being greedier than usual. I don't expect them to make more here they usually do. They are already indebted $200 million dollars with this development. It's not like that came out of Menkes pocket either.
 
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DSC

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Just imagine if there was a major downtown explosion like the one in China. A great amount of curtain walls would be damage. Not to mention the all the injured people. Developers should be better curtain walls for the future. Mother nature becoming more violent these days!!
We should all probably live underground - oh, no. Flooding. Of course buildings should be built to withstand expected weather and environmental conditions but nobody is going to build or pay for a 100% 'guaranteed safe" building. Like many things, it's a balance between many variables.
 

cd concept

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These window walls are only built to handle weather if they can for now. I wouldn't be surprised if they have to be replaced 10 to 15 years from now !!
 
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TheKingEast

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Pretty much like every development on the waterfront so far. For some reason developers don't feel that this place is worthy of their best work.

The buyers keep lining up to buy. I don't blame the developers for mailing it in.

I don't mind the design here, it's just you know, nothing special. If only they could use a cool color instead of the typical blue/green glass. Why not gold, bronze, auburn tinted glass?
 

Jasonzed

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IMG_20180113_1121290-panorama.jpg
 

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cd concept

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The buyers keep lining up to buy. I don't blame the developers for mailing it in.

I don't mind the design here, it's just you know, nothing special. If only they could use a cool color instead of the typical blue/green glass. Why not gold, bronze, auburn tinted glass?

They are using cool colours you mean warm tone colours Ha ! Ha ! Just joking around.
I'm you all the way it would be a miracle if they did!
 

Automation Gallery

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Another banal project to burden Toronto with. Does it always have to be about the most economical, easy to construct, offend no one option? Follow this link to see some incredible projects around the world.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/52241492@N06/albums/72157689412422632
You want high end design and architecture then you have to charge high end prices for condos, unfortunately this area of the waterfront is nowhere close to being in that league
 

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