The City of Kelowna is consulting local companies on possible provincial building code changes to encourage more environmentally friendly buildings.
Mo Bayat, director of development services for the City of Kelowna, outlined details of the regulations to the Canadian Home Builders Association of Kelowna at a meeting on Feb. 1.
After receiving feedback from the industry, Bayat will report to city council regarding implications of the proposed new regulations.
“It was a good opportunity to hear from the industry about these possible changes and get their thoughts about how these might or might not work in Kelowna,” said Bayat.
The province is considering new provincial building code regulations to improve a building’s energy performance, require installation of high-efficiency toilets and permit “grey water” from shower and laundry to be used for flushing toilets, based on Health Canada guidelines. Also, the new regulation will include provision to reuse collected rain water for irrigation.
Of particular interest in sunny Kelowna is a regulatory change to make installation of solar hot water systems easier.
The province has developed a new Solar Hot Water Ready Regulation in partnership with Solar BC and in consultation with the development industry. This new solar regulation will only apply in local government jurisdictions that request inclusion.
In Jurisdictions where the regulation is adopted, all new single-family homes will be built to accommodate future installation of a solar hot water system.
“Making a home Solar Hot Water Ready is easier and less expensive during initial construction than it is post-construction,” said Bayat. “When a homeowner makes the decision to install the solar hot water heating system, a few preparations during initial construction can really reduce costs… and will also help ensure that the system provides maximum energy savings.”