Projects | Public Services | Mannheim Water Operations Centre 


Region of Waterloo Mannheim Water Operations Centre


Long Views, Natural Light and a Roof Garden

A steep site makes for bright and interconnected work spaces




The expanded facility consolidates water operators and maintenance personnel into a new three-storey office addition to the existing Water Treatment Plant. The site offered severe technical constraints, and yet the design worked with the natural features to maximize long term energy savings while providing users on all levels with access to natural light and views to the surrounding forested landscape. Interconnected floor levels, combined with the thoughtful placement of programme and circulation, encourages staff to intermingle and breakdown traditional work silos. The team worked to allow large vehicles to easily enter and circulate the site while personal vehicles could access staff parking areas. The Operations Centre achieved LEED Silver Certification by incorporating increased thermal performance, triple-glazed windows to offices, as well as a green roof that can be enjoyed from the staff lunchroom and outdoor patio. Design and construction were sequenced to not disrupt the existing operations. As a result the blue curtainwall that separated the existing facility from the addition was saved from demolition and became a strong feature in the interior of the new lobby.


Our Role:

Design, Documentation, Procurement, Construction Administration.


Did You Know?

The Mannheim Water Treatment Plant processes potable water to the City of Kitchener and surrounding Region, with a design capacity of 72x1000m3 per day. The water is treated and then subject to rigorous testing before it ever enters the drinking supply system. If for whatever reason the water does not meet strict health requirements, then Facility Operators discharge the water into an infiltration pond located elsewhere on the Plant grounds. One of the discharge pipes for this system is about 4 feet in diameter and runs below the location of the new operations centre addition. As a precautionary measure, and in order to prevent any soil from eroding into the pipe and potentially affecting the building structure, an epoxy based, cured-in-place pipe (CIPP) liner was installed to the inside of the pipe. Working closely with a specialist trade contractor, a specialized truck rig was positioned over an existing access manhole. Secured at one end, an inverted felt sock was then slowly inserted into the pipe, turning right-side-out as it was fed down the length of the pipe. Once fully inserted and secured in place at both ends, an epoxy based resin was injected into the felts. Specialized mechanical boilers then travelled up and down the length of the pipe, to heat-cure (i.e. bond) the resin to the interior face of the pipe. The entire process took less than a day.



“The experience that my staff and myself have with John MacDonald Architect has been formed over many years. JMA has provided conscientious and effective consulting services to the Region on a very wide range of projects both large and small. JMA provides conscientious services and follow- through during the construction phase, and is actively involved in the work of their subconsultants. We value JMA's open approach and understanding of technical building systems.”


— Ellen McGaghey

Director, Facilities Management Region of Waterloo



Project Data

Public Services

Alteration / Addition



Kitchener (Mannheim), Ontario

2,665 m² (28,700 sq. ft.)​

Construction Completed 2009