Nova Scotia Power Corporate Headquarters, Halifax, Canada
WZMH Architects

The Nova Scotia Power (NSP) Corporate Headquarters occupies a prominent location in downtown Halifax, with significant frontage on the public boardwalk that lines the western edge of the harbour. Through a strategy of retention and adaptive reuse, a former power generating plant has become the headquarters for the provincial electrical utility. Completed June 2012, the facility houses over 600 staff in approximately 14,600 gross square metres.

Utilising an innovative construction approach, the design involved reuse of the existing steel structure and exterior concrete cladding, in conjunction with the insertion of floors within the existing volume. Originally designed to support coal bins and turbines, the structure and foundations were robust enough to support the new floors. Early visits to the site were inspirational: soaring interior spaces were filled with an intricate lattice of steel framework.

In a gesture to the memory of the building’s initial use and character, the original steel structure has been not only retained, but celebrated. Skylights sit in the base of former chimney stacks along the roof of a major public interior space. Interior finishes recall an industrial aesthetic: polished concrete floors and expanded metal mesh balustrades.

The main public entrance on Lower Water Street leads into a five-storey Atrium that offers spectacular views of the harbour. A secondary axis in the form of a two-to-four-storey Galleria provides an interior street that parallels the boardwalk for the entire length of the building.

As the provincial power authority, NSP wished to demonstrate environmental responsibility and show leadership in energy conservation. The unique adaptive reuse of the building is a visible statement of the corporation’s commitment to sustainability. It represents the first major use of “chilled beam” technology in Canada and is the first building in Atlantic Canada to receive LEED Platinum certification.

No Comments

Terms & Conditions   |   Privacy policy   |   Cookie Policy