Unlocking Rooftop Potential and Efficiency Gains with Geo‑Exchange Systems

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In the realm of sustainable building design, the mechanical penthouse represents a space of untapped possibilities. By eliminating conventional equipment such as boilers and chillers, there is an opportunity to revolutionize this space. Geothermal exchange systems have a mechanical room that occupies an average of just 400 square feet at the ground level or in underground parking, housing the essential pumps responsible for fluid circulation through ground loop heat exchangers and the building. Beyond the spatial efficiency, this approach significantly trims maintenance costs, freeing up resources for other vital aspects of building management.

The removal of fossil fuel-based heating and cooling equipment, including boilers, chillers, and cooling towers, not only shrinks the mechanical room but also opens the door to new architectural opportunities. For example, the resulting surplus space, especially valuable in space-scarce urban landscapes, can amplify penthouse areas in condominiums by an astonishing 70% or greater, directly translating into expanded, more livable spaces. In cities where every square inch is precious, the enhanced gross floor area becomes a game-changer. This offers municipalities a unique opportunity to incentivize the adoption of geothermal exchange systems. With minor adjustments to site-specific zoning bylaws during the approval process, local authorities can harness the latent value of penthouse real estate without altering the building’s overall massing or appearance.

Join our expert panel and discuss how building owners and developers can unlock the value of penthouse real estate, eliminate conventional equipment and reduce operational costs.

Our panel will be discussing:

  • How minor adjustments to site-specific zoning bylaws during the approvals process can unlock valuable real estate without changing the overall massing of the building.
  • Vertical development potential and how the integration of geothermal exchange systems significantly reduces the spatial footprint required for mechanical rooms, allowing for more efficient use of valuable real estate within buildings.

Gain valuable insight from our panel of industry experts:

Our expert panelists:


David MacMillan

Program Manager, City of Toronto,
Environment & Climate Division


Hanieh Momeni

Senior Architect,
BDP Quadrangle



Kareem Mirza

Chief Revenue Officer,
Subterra Renewables

Get Started.