Theal House: The Home of the Environmental Sustainability Centre

Blog Contributor: Nolan Kelly

Background 

Did you know that Theal house is the oldest structure on Brock University’s campus and one of the oldest buildings in all of St. Catharines? If you blink you might miss it as it is tucked away amongst the trees on the south side off Brock right off the Sir Isaac Brock Way entrance. The stone house has a long-storied history and currently serves as the home to the Environmental Sustainability Research Centre.  

 History  

Theal House was built in 1837 by Samuel Theal, using stones from the Niagara Escarpment. The building served as the family cottage house for several generations. Although Theal House has undergone many renovations throughout the years there is still a place to view the brick from the original house. The building has held many names over the years including Sympathy House, Turney House, Wright House and White House. However, it is now officially called Theal House and is home to the Environmental Sustainability Research Centre.  

 Sustainability Features 

The sustainability features of the Theal House include everything from the lightning and flooring to the furnishings and monitoring of the building. LED lighting has been installed throughout Theal House. The dimmer and daylight harvesting switches also work to reduce energy consumption. The flooring in Theal House was acquired form interface, a company internationally known for their focus and commitment to sustainability. Sustainable furnishing can be found throughout Theal House. This includes furniture from Creighton House Antiques, a local company in Niagara. Additionally, there are live edge wood desks found around the house that are made from sustainable timber, crafted by Brock University carpenters. Theal House also features an integrated system that controls HVAC, lighting, and monitor real time energy usage.