Re: winter manipulation?
There are articles around on wintering in a building with a controlled environment. Did a quick look but didn't locate one published by Beaverlodge Research Station in northern Alberta. It is on Beesource somewhere, Been through North Pole on a summer holiday.
Have a printed copy and some hi lites are
1. Ideal temp of building interior is 5C
2. Need ventilation fans to exhaust CO2 and mositure.
3. Need adequate ventilation of each hive for oxygen and moisture elimination with a bottom entrance and a top entrance. I run a additional 3/4 inch round hole in top super that doesn't get blocked by snow. Bottom entrance size regulates maximum air flow(need at least 5/8 inch. Isuspect your winter air is quite "dry" so you don't need a huge flow of air in each hive.
3. Install red lights in garage so you can work but invisible to bees. Block other incoming light
4. Medicate with Fumigillan in fall as Nosema/dysentry may be a problem.
5. IMHO insulate top, bottom, and three sides. Inner cover and top insulation avoid top condensation and dripping on the cluster. A wet cluster is very likely a dead cluster. Leave a front/cold side on which there will some condensation and provides a winter water supply. Without water, bees can also get somewhat constipated and have thready poop when beeing fed fondants and sugar in late winter.
6. Check with other local beekeeps to see what they find successful.
7. Good luck!
Zone 3b. If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got!