The City of Toronto broke ground for the new North East Scarborough Community Recreation & Child Care Centre, located south of the Rouge National Urban Park at 8450 Sheppard Ave. E., which will be the city’s first net zero energy and emissions community recreation facility. The building will also house the City’s second net zero child care centre.

The building’s leading-edge design employs innovative strategies to eliminate the use of fossil fuels, reduce overall energy consumption and incorporate on-site renewable energy systems. It will be 100 per cent electricity powered through a mix of solar photovoltaic panels on its roof and façade, as well as a parking lot canopy. Air handling units will improve heat recovery efficiency by 85 per cent.

“This centre will help us meet Toronto’s goal of becoming a net zero city while providing more child care opportunities for families in Scarborough,” said Mayor John Tory. “We are proud to deliver a state of the art community centre and gathering place that specifically meets the needs of the very diverse neighbourhoods that surround it.”

Outdoor green design is also an important component of the Centre’s vision. In addition to the building featuring a biodiverse green roof terrace, Joyce Trimmer Park will be revitalized with new landscaping and park amenities. The landscape design will include the planting of 96 trees and native plant species to improve surrounding green space and surface water drainage.

“From its pools to indoor cricket to its green roof and landscaping, the facilities of this Centre have been thoughtfully designed through intensive public input from one of Toronto’s most diverse communities,” said Deputy Mayor Michael Thompson (Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic and Community Development Committee.

The park will feature a skateboard park, mini soccer field, basketball court, playground, splash pad, ample outdoor seating, a gathering area and public art works. The community centre amenities include a 25-lane swimming pool and leisure pool, a gymnasium large enough to accommodate an indoor cricket pitch, a teaching kitchen, and a dance and fitness studio.

The Centre is also aiming to become the first building of its kind in Ontario to achieve the Canadian Green Building Council’s Zero Carbon Building Certification. Overall, the building will exceed the requirements set by Toronto Green Standard Version 3.

“I look forward to welcoming the city’s first net zero greenhouse gas emission community centre to Scarborough – Rouge Park. The Centre will bring long-awaited recreational programming and child care to our community, while also helping the City reach its target of being net zero by 2040,” said Councillor Jennifer McKelvie (Scarborough – Rouge Park), Chair of the Infrastructure and Environment Committee.

Construction on the North East Scarborough Community Recreation & Child Care Centre is anticipated to be completed by the end of 2024. Joyce Trimmer Park will be temporarily closed to the public during the construction period. The project architect is Perkins&Will Canada Corporation, and the contractor Aquicon Construction Company Ltd. Both were selected through competitive bidding process.

Featured image: Visual rendering of the outdoor entrance to the new North East Scarborough Community Recreation & Child Care Centre.

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