Close this search box.

Bird-friendly Design Update

The project architects and design team have expressed a commitment to bird-friendly design for the Ottawa Public Library-Library and Archives Joint Facility. The following list captures the measures being taken in support of bird safety including some of the specifics regarding how we plan to deliver on this commitment:
We have considered the environmental context and recognize that the site is near the Ottawa River and relatively adjacent to migratory routes for birds along the waterway. To address this:

  • The siting of the building is intended to be positioned adjacent to green spaces and provide clear space for bird flights along these routes.
  • The building orientation and composition of exterior glazing to solid cladding is designed to minimize the potential for greenspace reflection on the building exterior.

We have designed the building to minimize the transparency and reflectivity of glazing. For example:

  • Exterior glazing on the building complies with the “Specifications for Bird Safety Glass” as outlined in the City of Ottawa’s Bird Friendly Design Guidelines that will be released later this fall.
  • Bird-friendly ceramic frit patterns are specified on all exterior glass surfaces to minimize the potential for bird collisions, which exceeds the guidelines that stipulate that frit is not required above 18m in height above grade.
  • Extensive use of horizontal sunshade elements to run angled to the glass and be no more than 1m away as per the guidelines, which provides a level of shading on the glazing to minimize potential reflection areas.
  • The glazing to solid ratio of the building is essentially 60 to 40, thereby avoiding large expanses of uninterrupted glazing.
  • There is a continuous eave projection around the entire building that provides shade and lessens the area of reflection on the upper-storey glazing.
  • There is a projection to provide cover for pedestrian walkways at Level 2 that will introduce shade and lessen reflectivity at the Ground Floor glazing and entrances.

We are working to avoid or mitigate design traps by ensuring that exterior screens comply with the “Specifications for Integrated Protection Measures” as outlined in the City’s guidelines.

  • In addition, all exterior patios and balconies are design with bird-friendly glazing to mitigate any “black hole” effect. 

We are also considering other structural features such as the facility’s roof-top telecom mast is supported without guy wires and is a high contrast colour relative to the remainder of the roof. In addition, all grates are designed to be bird-friendly and prevent potential fall-through.

In addition, we are creating safe, bird-friendly landscape design with a hardscape buffer between the planted portion of the landscape and the building.

  • The landscape design has been done in a manner to not promote the reflection of landscape elements in the building glazing.
  • The interior green wall is not visible through the exterior glazing.
  • Plant species within the landscape design do not attract birds.
  • The green roof boundaries are clearly delineated, not reflected in any skylight glazing and are species known not to attract birds. 

Furthermore, we have designed exterior lighting to minimize light trespass at night.

  • Exterior lighting has been designed to meet the requirements of LEED SSc8 (Sustainable Sites credit 8) Light Pollution Reduction.
  • The exterior landscape lighting design also complies with the “National Capital Commission’s Capital Illumination Plan – 2017-2027”.
  • Dark-Sky compliant lighting fixtures are specified in the exterior lighting design.
  • Lighting controls and sensors are used to reduce the amount of exterior lighting where applicable. 

In conclusion, we are also avoiding nighttime light trespass from the building’s interior by ensuring that interior lighting design meets the requirements of LEED SSc8 (Sustainable Sites credit 8) Light Pollution Reduction.

Skip to content