On October 15, the Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium was awarded Leadership in Energy & Environment Design (LEED®) Platinum certification, which is the highest level of certification given to an institutional building in Canada. SNC-Lavalin’s Infrastructure sector was responsible for the preliminary concept, the structural and the civil engineering design and onsite supervision of this 8,153 m² facility, located in the heart of Montreal, Canada.
Designed to comply with the highest environmental requirements of the industry, the facility located between the Biodôme and the base of the Olympic Stadium tower was built over an existing underground parking. Boasting highly creative architecture, the Planetarium is made of lightweight steel and incorporates environmental components such as low energy and water consumption, reduction of releases to the sewer, a green roof to absorb and evaporate the heat, the reuse of existing structures as well as the use of recycled construction materials. Moreover, the external lighting system respects to ‘dark sky’ standards, which aim to reduce light pollution.
“The integration of the natural ecosystem into the building design was at the essence of this project,” said François Picher, Engineer, Infrastructure. “Our commitment to create a connexion between nature and science, and improve global experience for the visitors, was present at all stages of the project.”
The Planetarium, which is part of the biggest conglomerate of natural sciences facilities in Canada, along with the Biodôme, the Insectarium and the Botanical Garden, opened its doors to the Montreal population on April 6, 2013.