Chatsworth Fine Homes has always been known for providing painstaking attention to detail.
What should also be highlighted, however, is that the Oakville-based boutique builder has many years of experience utilizing energy-saving techniques – with one property, in fact, receiving the first net-zero ready designation in the Metro Toronto area.
“We have supported green building for a long time,” says Fil Capuano, Chatsworth’s president. “We feature a strong background in engineering and we see where so many outmoded building practices are still in use today that do not address client concerns of comfort, financial and social responsibility. We have to have an eye on what is in everyone’s mind – climate change. “We have very sophisticated and well-educated clients who have a grasp on what is available today … and they want only the best when building a new home.”
The designated home at 1013 Westdale Road in Oakville – the recipient of the net-zero ready classification – is the latest example of Chatsworth’s embrace of both sustainable building and framing a practical way forward to address climate change concerns.
“The home demonstrates that you can have a fabulous luxury home that doesn’t compromise aesthetics,” says Capuano. “The big news in our market, really, is that we can build a luxury home with no compromises that consumes just over one third of the energy of an equivalent home built to OBC (Ontario Building Code) standards.”
But, as Capuano stresses, Chatsworth is definitely not “new to this.”
Nearly 20 years ago, the Chatsworth team built Chelster Hall in Oakville, a magnificent mansion on the shores of Lake Ontario. One of the largest private residences in Canada, the sprawling property sits on 10 acres with 47,000 square feet of living space – about the same size as the White House in Washington, D.C. Chatsworth utilized insulated concrete forms (ICF) throughout the build, and Chelster Hall was the recipient of a North America-wide ICF award in 2008. Fast-forward to 2015 and 2017, and you’d see that Chatsworth remained at the forefront of high-performance building, presented with Best Custom Home awards from the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD). The 2017 honour was for a home at 129 Burgundy Drive in Oakville; which BILD noted included many environmentally-sustainable features.
that project, with utilized ICF from footing to roof,” says Capuano. “It was
built to R2000* standards, had triple glass windows with a U value of 1.1, air
tightness of 1.4 ACH50, seven kW of solar, plus a 3 1/2 -inch interior furring
wall, providing total wall insulation of approximately R-40.”
That home, completed in 2016, had many of the same traits as net-zero, as Chatsworth continued to incorporate environmentally-friendly systems. As noted, standout sustainable features included a super-insulated envelope, four energy recovery ventilators, the rooftop solar PV system, low-flow plumbing, rainwater collection for irrigation, occupancy sensors, intelligent controls, and LED lighting. The tight envelope, understandably, drastically cuts back on the heating and cooling loads.
The upshot is that everything is balanced by smart engineering and advanced controls to optimize heating and cooling efficiency. With no system oversizing permitted, the gas bill for the home is less than half what it would be for the size of the building.
“The green buzz is everywhere,” says Capuano. “But
to deliver on net-zero you must have third party assurance that the performance
of the home measures up to the net-zero program’s strict guidelines.
“Many people think that building a larger home with high-quality finishes and luxury options may be wasteful. But we’ve proven that the net-zero ready program delivers a home that consumes almost 60 per cent less than its code-compliant counterpart and is a major step forward – luxury with a view to economy and social responsibility.
have your cake and eat it, too!”
(*129 Burgundy Drive in Oakville was enrolled in R2000 program and qualified, except for a fireplace that wasn’t EPA-rated at the time.)Web / chatsworthfinehomes.com