Devereaux House was on the corner of lands owned by the Town of Halton Hills, falling to pieces and due for demolition. In 2004 a citizen's committee started raising money to renovate it, but when they started looking closely, they found that it was almost entirely original, down to the traditional milk paint. "It was like the Antiques Roadshow," Ann Lawlor told Leslie Scrivener of the Star, "We had no idea what we had." So they are carefully restoring rather than renovating, but also demonstrating that old buildings can be green buildings.
You can't add a lot of insulation to a building like this and you really shouldn't replace the windows, but one can put in ground source heat pumps, LED lighting, storm windows and shutters. You can also zone the heating systems; architect Marina Huissoon tells the Star that people used to only heat the rooms they were occupying rather than the modern wasteful habit of heating the whole house. "We looked at the way the original settlers lived and tried to bring those concepts forward. "
Huissoon notes that earlier generations had little choice about practising conservation ethics."It's a very old-fashioned notion, taking care of what we have – we've gotten out of that practice in the last few decades. It's time to get back to that approach to living." ::Friends of Devereaux Housevia ::The Star
See TreeHugger: Preservation is Sustainability, Big Steps in Building: Ban Demolition, Ban Demolition, Especially by Greedy Universities, Demolition by Neglect: Use It or Lose It and Landmarks, not Landfill