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B.C.’s Reframed Lab seeks to make homes “safer, more energy-efficient and less polluting”

June 30, 2020 | By Anthony Capkun

June 30, 2020 – British Columbia (through BC Housing), the City of Vancouver, the BC Non-Profit Housing Association and the Pembina Institute have launched the Reframed Lab initiative to find ways of making homes “safer, more energy-efficient and less polluting, while reducing heating costs for residents”.

The Reframed Lab will perform retrofit demonstration projects on up to five multi-unit residential buildings.

This summer, BC Housing will issue a request for proposals for partners to join the Reframed Lab. Those partners—which include just about anyone from the construction sector, including architects, contractors, engineers and manufacturers—will come together to create “innovative and integrated ways to retrofit existing buildings”. Selected teams will then be invited to join a six-month exploration lab to learn and share ideas.

Teams will prepare designs for a specific building, “with support from experts on climate change, energy and health”. Their goal will be to demonstrate next-generation solutions that integrate seismic and fire safety, energy efficiency and climate-adaptation upgrades, while “dramatically reducing the buildings’ carbon pollution”.

BC Housing will support the retrofit of the selected buildings with funding from the Capital Renewal Fund, a 10-year, $1.1-billion investment to preserve and improve the province’s 51,000 units of social housing.

This initiative received $250,000 from the Province’s CleanBC Building Innovation (CBBI) Fund. The City of Vancouver, meantime, will provide technical and regulatory guidance.

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