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Edmonton’s first off-the-grid business building opens its doors

Mayor Don Iveson and TV home expert Mike Holmes were on hand for the unveiling of an Edmonton office space run completely off the power grid. Friday, March 22, 2019.
Mayor Don Iveson and TV home expert Mike Holmes were on hand for the unveiling of an Edmonton office space run completely off the power grid. Friday, March 22, 2019. Margeaux Maron, Global News

An Edmonton-based home builder has become the first commercial office space to be run completely off the power grid in our city.

The two-storey, 1,800-square-foot building is powered by 16 solar panels feeding into six battery packs. When the power load needs to be higher, a pair of natural gas-powered micro Combined Heat Power units kick in.

Mayor Don Iveson and TV home expert Mike Holmes were on hand for the unveiling.

“To see them do it for their own building, and see them get right off the grid using a mix of different heating technologies and solar power is just awesome leadership and great to see in the city here,” the mayor said.

The builders estimate it will have an 80 per cent carbon reduction, compared to traditional systems.

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Effect Home Builders did not disclose the total cost of the project, but a representative from the Canadian Gas Association confirmed a $95,000 grant from the Natural Gas Innovation Fund was used.

READ MORE: Why living ‘off the grid’ isn’t possible for most Canadians

Students from SAIT will monitor the implementation over the next year to see how efficient the mechanics of the building are.