Welcome to the “Green” Dome
I have a piece in today’s Toronto Star about how the Rogers Centre, home of the Blue Jays baseball team and formerly known as SkyDome, is in the middle of a three-year retrofit program to dramatically increase its energy efficiency. Rogers Communications Inc., owner of the ball club and the stadium, has a goal of reducing the centre’s electricity bill by 33 per cent. So far, it has automated the lighting systems in about a third of the building, including private boxes, corporate offices, the underground parking garage and eventually all hallways, corridors and stairways. Sound, motion and sunlight sensors are being used to manage when the lights go on and off and when they should be dimmed to maximize efficiency. With the work done so far, savings on retrofitted lighting are expected to reach 75 per cent, according to Terry Mocherniak, CEO of Encelium Technologies, the Toronto-based company hired to do the lighting retrofit. The $3 million retrofit is expected to save more than $1 million a year with a payback of a few years. It’s an ambitious and inspiring plan that should be applauded and copied by others in the city and province.