Toronto developer plans to “decarbonize” new homes
February 28, 2023
MVP2 in Brampton. | Daniels Corp.
Toronto-based builder and developer Daniels Corp has unveiled a ‘decarbonization roadmap’ as it develops Brampton, Ontario’s largest low-carbon, master-planned community.
The roadmap includes achieving near-zero, whole-life carbon emissions for all its communities which start development in 2026 and beyond—without the use of carbon or renewable energy credits.
“Internally, we just got to a point where we said, we've in the past lead on this issue and maybe today, we're not doing as much as we can to lead on this issue," said Adam Molson, Daniels Corp. vice-president of rental communities and sustainability.
Since its founding in 1983, Daniels Corp. has built over 35,000 new homes across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).
The first phase of its 19-acre Brampton community, known as MPV2, is under construction near the Mount Pleasant GO station in the northwest of the GTA. The first occupants are scheduled for 2026.
Work began on the decarbonization roadmap two years ago by determining the company’s baseline emissions from five multi-residential, high-rise projects Daniels determined it had a baseline of 1,660 kilograms of carbon dioxide (CO2) per square metre, with 385 kilograms from up-front emissions and 1,275 kilograms from operating emissions.
In the roadmap, this baseline is compared to “stacking almost four barrels of crude oil on each square meter of floor space.”
The company’s first-generation commitment, from 2021 to 2025, will be to attain a whole-life carbon intensity of 1,000 kilograms of CO2 per square metre. If successful, it would result in a 40 per cent emissions reduction from its baseline.
Molson expects two or three subsequent phases, with final completion around 2028 or 2029. One of those future phases will incorporate Passivehaus certification and mass timber, with other technologies and techniques promised “in the pipeline.”
MPV2 is being financed with a green loan from RBC under the bank’s Sustainable Finance Framework.
Daniels has partnered with Enwave Energy Corporation to implement sustainable energy solutions at MPV2, including geo-exchange and low-carbon concrete products.
“We see townhomes as the new minimum going forward. In our mind, there is no reason at all why anyone, starting with ourselves, should be building a townhouse that’s not net-zero,” Molson said. He added the biggest challenge was not compromising on sustainability while providing affordability.