Tricar’s River Mill Condos will connect to Guelph’s Galt District Energy System

Central facility will provide hot water, heating and air conditioning to units

Guelph, On, August 26, 2014 — River Mill Condominiums will be the first residential building in Guelph to be heated and cooled by district energy.

The Tricar Group, an environmentally responsible builder, announced today that its 18-storey condo development in Guelph’s downtown core will be supplied with heating, hot water, and air conditioning by the Galt District Energy System.

Buildings connected to a district energy system don’t need individual furnaces, air conditioning units, or water heaters. Instead, an underground network of pipes installed alongside water, electricity, and other utilities, allows multiple buildings to share energy for heating, cooling, and hot water—minimizing energy consumption and producing less greenhouse gas emissions than conventional systems.

As a result, River Mill residents will benefit from the reliability, convenience and lower fuel costs associated with district energy.

Starting this fall, insulated, underground pipes will be installed along Macdonell, Woolwich and Wellington streets. These pipes will transport hot and chilled water in a closed loop system to the River Mill site where they will pass through a heat exchanger located in an energy transfer station in the new condominium building.

The heating and air conditioning equipment in the 139 condominium suites will look the same as conventional equipment. Individual programmable thermostats will enable residents to monitor and control the temperature in their units to ensure comfort.

The Sleeman Centre, which serves as the central heating and cooling plant for the Galt District Energy System, owned and operated by Envida Community Energy Inc., uses natural gas to heat water in boilers for space heating, and has a central chilling unit to chill water for cooling.

The addition of Tricar’s River Mill Condominiums development to the system is an important step in Guelph’s plans to build North America’s first city-wide district energy network to supply at least 50 per cent of the community’s heating needs in the next 30 years.

Several key partners, including Envida Community Energy Inc., are key implementers of Guelph’s award-winning Community Energy Initiative—making better use of local energy sources, creating local jobs and keeping more energy dollars in Guelph.


“At Tricar we have long prided ourselves on being innovators in the high rise condominium industry and have always been committed to improving communities on economic, cultural and environmental levels. To have an opportunity to further raise the bar environmentally through the use of sustainable technology in the form of district energy is something we are very excited about. We are proud to be working with Envida Community Energy and the City of Guelph to bring an innovative and green technology to a great residential development in the downtown core.”

– Adam Carapella, Vice President Operations, The Tricar Group

“Congratulations to Tricar for leading the way with Guelph’s first residential building to be heated and cooled through a district energy system. This reflects not only Tricar’s commitment to corporate citizenship and environmental sustainability, but also their confidence that district energy makes good business sense. This system provides reliable, cost competitive, and clean heating and cooling while consuming less energy – a prime example of doing more with less.”

– Karen Farbridge, Mayor, City of Guelph

“Tricar is to be commended on their commitment to the environment. By incorporating district energy into their building design and architecture they are proving that by combining a desire to seek out cleaner energy solutions with some advance planning it is possible to achieve luxury living with a reduced carbon footprint.”

– Barry Chuddy, Chief Executive Officer, Guelph Municipal Holdings Inc.

About The Tricar Group
The Tricar Group has been developing and managing award-winning multi-family high-rise buildings for almost 30 years. We are committed to fostering long-term relationships with the communities in which we build. We have dedicated ourselves to create projects that enhance the cultural, social, environmental and economic fabric of the area and have been a driving force in the revitalization of downtown cores. It’s who we are as a responsible builder.

Tricar has an impressive portfolio that has grown to over 5000 quality homes across Southwestern Ontario including both luxury condominiums and premier high-rise apartment rentals. Our innovative and quality craftsmanship have earned us numerous awards for architecture and design excellence and our personal, dedicated attention to customer care has earned us the honour as Builder of the Year in Ontario by Tarion Warranty Corporation.

About the City of Guelph
Located about 100 kilometres west of Toronto, Ontario, Guelph is a growing, diverse and vibrant community of more than 120,000 people. Guelph’s community partners and business leaders are making a difference locally and globally in agri-food, technology, environmental enterprise and advanced manufacturing industries. The city’s healthy local economy, thriving arts and culture scene, charming neighbourhoods, parks and green spaces make Guelph among the most livable cities in Canada.

About Envida Community Energy Inc.
Owned by Guelph Hydro Inc., Envida Community Energy is the primary implementer and key developer of high-efficiency, low-carbon energy projects that are assisting the City of Guelph in achieving targets set out in the Guelph Community Energy Initiative while facilitating economic development in the community. The company operates a 100-kilowatt solar facility, the Eastview Landfill Biogas Plant and district energy facilities in the Sleeman Centre and the Hanlon Creek Business Park in Guelph. A combined heat and power facility is now under development in the Hanlon Creek Business Park.

About Guelph Hydro Inc.
Owned by Guelph Municipal Holdings Inc. which is in turn owned by the City of Guelph, Guelph Hydro Inc. is helping to create a reliable, diversified and sustainable energy supply to ensure the long-term competitiveness and prosperity of the communities it serves—Guelph and Rockwood.

Materials available

District Energy – Backgrounder
District Energy Strategic Plan
Envida District Energy Facility at Sleeman Centre – Backgrounder
Galt District Energy System, Guelph – Backgrounder
Galt District Energy System, Guelph – Illustration

Photos available upon request

District energy system at the Sleeman Centre

Related links

Community Energy Initiative
District Energy 
District energy, energy prices, and property taxes
District Energy Strategic Plan

Media contacts

Adam Carapella, VP Operations
The Tricar Group
519-652-8900 extension 119

Rob Kerr, General Manager
Guelph Municipal Holdings Inc.
519-822-1260 extension 2079

Sandy Manners, Director of Corporate Communications
Guelph Hydro Inc.