During the tourist season, from June to September, visitors to the Reford Gardens have access to a program that is centred on the theme “To build is to choose”, illustrating the benefits of green building. From October to May, the ERE 132 Eco Home is available for rent for short stays, business meetings or creative residencies for artists. The house is suitable for disabled guests and can accommodate up to six people in three bedrooms.
Principles of Green Building
Many factors influence the cost of a home’s construction or renovation: square footage, materials, insulation levels, mechanical systems, landscaping, etc. Beyond the cost of materials, take into account the recurring costs - energy and maintenance - before making your choices. Here are a few that have been made by the architects:
Absence of a basement: The basement is a space that has a very high environmental impact because it significantly increases the amount of cement necessary for construction. A ton of Portland cement produces nearly a ton of greenhouse gases (GHG). A basement can also present many risks and inconveniences: humidity, flooding, mold, lack of light.
Opt for a home built on a slab-on-grade instead of a conventional basement foundation because basements in Quebec homes often pose problems. Basements cost as much to build as an additional floor and can lead to humidity problems (and can even lead to serious complications because of water leakage). Basements also require a lot of concrete, a large emitter of greenhouse gases. To compensate for the lack of space, an additional floor can be built: a solution that is more energy-efficient, presents fewer environmental hazards, is more comfortable and has a higher resale value.
Surface area of a home: It is important to assess the real needs for space to make economies on the costs of construction and maintenance. It is important to note that a home that is well designed can be small in surface area, but can provide a spacious living area! In Canada, the average size of a new home is 2,450 ft2 (228 m2). ERE 132 has 1,867 ft2 (173 m2) of heated area.
Structural elements: The best options to consider are solid wood, prefabricated factory panels, double-stud walls, concrete molding and straw-bale walls. They are among the most environmental and economical. ERE 132: additional cost of $12,000 for the double-stud wall.
Hyper-insulation of the home: A solution that allows you to save plenty of money on heating costs in the long term. It is important to choose insulation materials that are both healthy and affordable, such as cellulose, wood fiber, straw or hemp, in sufficient quantity. ERE 132: additional cost of $11,600 for the hyper-insulation of the home (attic space, walls and slab-on-grade).
High-quality, durable and environmentally-friendly surfaces: Interior and exterior walls in wood, a roof with cedar shingles and wood and concrete floors are among the best choices. The home will not have to be renovated in a long time. This is a source of significant savings and is environmentally friendly.
Openings, doors and windows: It is important to focus on the location of the doors and windows and on their quality and efficiency! South facing doors and windows allow to maximize the heat input. Choosing an ENERGY STAR® rating: their quality and efficiency are certified.
About the Partners
This integrated design project was carried out by a multidisciplinary team from the Lower St. Lawrence Region in Quebec, with the support of the ACCORD regional “cluster of excellence” in eco-construction and collaboration of Écohabitation. Experts involved come from the fields of architecture, sustainable development, engineering, design and development: Les Architectes Goulet et Lebel, Groupe Architecture MB, CONTACT Innovation, Tetra Tech, Hélène Tremblay Groupe design and Imaginature. The construction of the house was entrusted to Kamco Construction.
A project that mobilized an entire region, the ERE 132 Eco Home has benefited from the financial involvement of public, private and institutional partners. In total, more than 80 organizations - including fifty manufacturing firms and professional services that were members of the Green Building cluster - rallied behind the challenges of sustainable development with the aim to vitalize the regional economy by building green.
About the Reford Gardens / Jardins de Métis
A National Historic Site and Québec heritage site, the Reford Gardens / Jardins de Métis are an obligatory stop for all those visiting eastern Québec. Cultural space and tourist destination for over 50 years, the Reford Gardens is one of the most popular attractions in the Gaspésie region, providing visitors with experiences for every sense. Located on the banks of the St. Lawrence and Mitis rivers, the gardens were created between 1926 and 1958 by avid gardener and plant collector, Elsie Reford and rank among the great gardens of North America. It presents this year the 17th edition of the International Garden Festival.
The Reford Gardens are open every day up to October 2, 2016. Children 13 and under are admitted free of charge. Hydro-Québec has been the lead sponsor of the Reford Gardens since 1999.
Single family dwelling on 2 floors, no basement, with a total floor area of 173 m2 (1,867 ft2) / Three bedrooms, one on the ground floor and two upstairs.
High efficiency windows: triple thermos, location of LOW-E as the north-south or east-west, wooden frame covered with aluminum on the outside, low-VOC / wooden doors, certified Energy Star. Fenestrated area: south: 72% (sun shade); west: 4%; north: 10%; east: 14%. Ratio windows / walls: 13.7%; passive solar house.
Art Massif: Beam and posts (glued laminated timber), beams (solid wood).
Béton provincial: Floor slab (type ternary concrete: recycled content).
ConceptMAT: Prefabricated wall (double stud frame).
PBM Solutions structures: Floor joists (perforated), roof trusses.
Atelier Étienne Guay: Ironworks (gutter brackets and forged chains, post supports, wall ties for sunshades).
Contact Signature: Gallery (grooved larch), outside staircase with railing (larch), entry porch (structure in spruce), blinds (larch), sunshades (larch), wood Gutters (cedar).
Les Bardeaux Lajoie Inc.: Siding — cedar shingles.
Ferblanterie de l’Est: Roofing (aluminum shingles).
Fransyl: Insulation (polystyrene foam panels under slab).
Igloo Isolation: Insulation (loose cellulose).
Isolation Tousignant: Isolation (injected cellulose).
MSL Fibre: Insulation (wood fiber panels ECO — fiber cardboard).
Adfast: Sealant and adhesive tape.
Armoires Idécor: Built-in furniture (technical drawings and installation).
Miralis: Built-in furniture (enclosures and cabinet doors - Rough Chic: kitchen, bathroom and storage room).
Unibord: Built-in furniture (chipboard formaldehyde-free cabinets for kitchens, bathrooms and cupboards).
Bégin & Bégin: Internal staircase (laminated maple steps and railings crowning), floor covering (maple).
Bétonel: Life Master paint on gypsum.
Boomerang: Boomerang paint on gypsum.
Glendyne: Siding (slate siding), flooring (slate tile: bathroom and doorway).
GDS: Partitions, laths, floor, sill plate prefabricated walls, bracing (wood frame and 2x4 and 1x3).
Groupe Lebel: Siding (spruce clapboard), mouldings (spruce), interior panelling (panelling and torrified wood mouldings), internal staircase (torrified wood risers), shed model Zen.
Belisle: Exterior doors (north and west facades — ground floor).
Lepage Millwork: Exterior door, windows (south facade).
Martin: Exterior door (west facade — floor), windows (east and north facades)
Prelco: Backsplash (printed tempered glass).
Fernande Forest Art visuel: Photographic design on backsplash.
Ozeano Granite Surface: Built-in furniture (countertops: kitchen and bathroom — granite Quebec, Canada quartz).
TremTech: Paneling and moldings (milled aspen), built-in furniture (glued laminated wood table), mouldings (natural aspen), moulding and profiling of maple wood (service).
Teknosol: Concrete stamping (hall, bathroom, north room).
Mecanical, electrical, plumbing
Airai: Heat Recovery Ventilator (HRV — Model Lifebreath155MAX), wall and digital timer contils).
For-Trem: LED lighting.
Heat Link: Radiant floor (hydronic heating system).
Les électriciens Desjardins: Electricity (service).
Ouellet chauffage électrique: Baseboard (electrical & radiant), thermostats.
Solénove Énergie Québec: Greywater heat recovery (power pipe).
Taco: Radiant Floor (circulation pump Delta T Variable Speed).
Tekmar: Radiant floor (thermostat and control center).
Thermo-Trap: Ventilation vent (hood, dryer and central vacuum).
Water Matrix: Fixtures (toilets 3 liters).
Premier Tech: Wastewater treatment system (Ecoflo), substrate for gardens.
Les Entreprises E. Normand: Excavation of foundations, installation of the septic tank and the biofilter Ecoflo.
Permacon: Honeycombed concrete paver (driveway).
Conteneur KRT: Construction Waste Management.
Poitras Meubles et design: Appliances, dining room table and chairs, console, living room furniture, furniture in the ground floor room and master bedroom, mattress children’s room, TV.
Linéaire Éco-construction: Coffee table (living room).
Atelier l’Art Sylvestre: Entry Bench, TV stand, children’s room furniture.
Charpenterie & Menuiserie Petchedetz: Table, bench and bookcase (interpretation area).
Atelier Bertrand: Driftwood Lamps (dining room, bedrooms).
David Reford: If you cut me anymore, I’ll be sawbust, artwork (living room).
Denise Pelletier: Phalaenopsis blanc, artwork (ground floor room).
Jean-Philippe Roy: Faire croître, artwork (above the roof ridge).
Vu en pointillés: Photographic triptychs (ground floor bathroom, rooms).
CDRIN: Mobile Application – To build is to choose!.
Novoclimat: Certification (Novoclimat Program 2.0).
Desjardins: Sustainable housing (financial incentives).
Spécialités Électriques Rivière-du-Loup: Solar photovoltaic (Fronius inverters and Power outback, Surette battery, Solarworld solar module 250W).
TELUS: Equipment connected to high-speed Internet.
Tortuga Films: Video production.