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Green energy Benny Farm

Housing, community environment and ICP
1996 – 2006

Client : OBNL Chez Soi

Architect: L’OEUF S.E.N.C

Structural engineer: Nicolet Chartrand Knoll
Mechanical/Electrical Engineer: Martin Roy & Associates

Delivery date: June 2006

Benny Farm is first and foremost a project that puts forward a model of global ecology: social, ethical, technical and financial. Located in the Notre-Dame-De-Grâce district of Montreal, this project involves the construction of 187 housing units spread over 4 properties, while linking them by a shared green infrastructure. Winner of the HOLCIM Foundation Awards for Sustainable Architecture, 1st prize for North America in 2005 and 3rd prize internationally in 2006, Benny Farm combines low and high technology strategies, within and between buildings in rehabilitation and new construction. The major overall innovation is the integration of a community process, sustainable building systems and the principle of co-ownership into the affordable housing sector. Our role in this project was as much that of a social activist as an architect. This is the first multi-stakeholder partnership in the affordable housing sector where long-term sustainability issues were addressed head-on and made central to the project.
The project proposed a building protocol that reduces greenhouse gas emissions, potable water and wastewater use, and limits material waste through rehabilitation and retrofitting, reuse and recycling of waste. Most of the energy is from renewable sources, so the partners are considerably protected from energy cost increases. These closely linked and mutually dependent systems contribute to improving the quality of life of Benny Farm residents. This is a model project in which we have put our full range of sustainable skills at the service of our client.