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CSA Group opens new global headquarters in Toronto


October 22, 2010
By Mary Del


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CSA Group, a leader in standards, testing and certification, and consumer product evaluation services, recently unveiled its new energy-efficient, $14-million headquarters at its recently refurbished location on Rexdale Boulevard in Toronto, Ont., where it has operated since 1954. The building was rebuilt in many areas to incorporate state-of-the-art energy-efficient systems and construction, while at the same time reusing much of the original infrastructure.

The renovation expands the facility to 252,000 square feet, serving as the headquarters for CSA Group, which has offices, testing laboratories and affiliates in more than 60 countries globally. The organization currently provides services to approximately 20,000 customers and employs more than 1,350 people around the world with approximately 9,000 volunteer members who are the heart of the standards development process.

The Canadian Standards Association Testing Laboratories opened at the Rexdale location in 1954 with 50,000 square feet. The building now boasts modern offices, spacious meeting rooms and advanced laboratories for the testing and certification of gas, electric and plumbing products, as well as personal protective equipment such as occupational and hockey helmets. Laboratory areas include wind machines, fuel burning stations, water tanks, chemical analysis abilities and even rooms that replicate extreme temperatures like the Sahara’s dry heat and the Arctic’s frigid air.

To accommodate the increasing need from manufacturers for energy efficiency verification services, CSA will double its testing capacity across its laboratories in Toronto, Atlanta and China. CSA is expanding its portfolio of service offerings to include testing for eligible products against new ENERGY STAR efficiency requirements that go into effect in January 2011.

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CSA Group’s headquarters sets a standard for harnessing the power of sustainable and green practices. The facility incorporates the latest energy efficiency systems and ongoing pilot projects, such as rooftop photovoltaic solar panels, a solar hot water tank for the cafeteria, a wind turbine as an alternative source of energy, and compact fluorescent lighting throughout the building. All of the glass windows and wall insulation were installed using R14 thermal resistance for energy efficiency. The building also incorporates special energy-efficient ceramic glass spandrels that let in light while keeping out cold, and the majority of the original roofing has been retained or repurposed to keep the historic architecture intact.