By: Janik Shannon

With global warming, acid rain, greenhouse effect, ozone layer deterioration and air pollution, what we need now more than ever are energy-efficient and environmentally friendly homes such as the ones built by Roy Nandram.

Growing up in Guyana within a large family, Nandram, 55, learned from an early age to live with what he had.
Although his lifestyle wasn’t based around the perimeter of being poor, he was still green by necessity. Bringing that knowledge to Canada in 1976, Nandram’s company RND Construction has helped create LEED-certified houses and has been presented several awards over the years.

At the 29th annual design awards, Nandram took home six trophies consisting of Renovation/Addition Between $60,000 and $100,000, Custom Urban Infill, Green Renovation of the Year, Green Custom of the Year, Renovate of the Year and the People’s Choice Award for the makeover of an east-end home.

“It’s not only the building of the house; it’s the lifetime use of the house,” said Nandram.

“How is that person going to reduce the impact on the environment by living in a LEED home?”

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design is a third-party certification program and an internationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. As an internationally recognized mark of excellence, LEED provides building owners and operators the tools they need to have an immediate and measurable impact on their buildings’ performance.

“[Nandram] is a very detail-oriented person, very thorough and likes to do a lot of research on his own,” said Linda Chapman of Smart Architecture.

“He always brings lot of good ideas to a project. He’s very involved in green building and construction; he has been for many years.”

Combining his skills acquired through his degrees in mechanical engineering technology and industrial engineering technology from Algonquin, and his bachelor of social science with a concentration in economics from the University of Ottawa, Nandram says he uses those skills every day.

“It doesn’t matter what you study at college or university, it does not mean you have to work in that discipline,” said Nandram, sharing the advice he once told his son.

“What you learn in school is how to apply yourself, because generally when you finish school you know very little. But what you learn is the training of the mind, you learn how to work in groups and you learn how to carry out instructions.”

Working on numerous projects since the company started in 1990, Nandram has had the opportunity to work alongside numerous people.

“He understands the aesthetic concepts behind our architectural drawings,” said Christopher Simmonds of CS Architect Inc.

“I enjoy working with him because of his insight, honesty, service and commitment to doing a job well.”
Nandram understands that going green can sometimes be pricey for the average person but he also believes that, “it’s difficult to put a price on it [when] it will protect your health.”