WELL Multi-family Residential Certification

Montreal megaproject pursues WELL Multi-family Residential Certification

Friday, September 1, 2017

HUMANITI, a mixed-use megaproject that will combine a residential, office and commercial space in Montreal, has officially registered to pursue WELL Multi-family Residential Certification for its residential component.

The project, dubbed Montreal’s very first “smart vertical community,” will consist of a hotel with nearly 200 rooms, over 300 rental housing units and nearly 150 condominiums, along with 60,000 square feet of office space and 15,000 square feet of commercial space, occupying an entire block in Montreal’s Quartier International.

“Our homes are the most important spaces in our lives, and making them as healthy for our families as possible is something all of us do naturally,” said Kamyar Vaghar, president of the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), in a press release. “The WELL Multi-family Residential Certification gives residents a solid foundation from which they can build out their interior spaces to protect and advance the health and wellbeing of the people who matter most. We’re excited to see HUMANITI make this commitment to bring this important concept to life in Montreal.”

WELL certification is the first health and wellness standard to harmonize and coexist with LEED certification. Adhering to the building standard essentially aims to put humans at the centre of real estate and built-environment design decisions, according to the IWBI.

The advantages of WELL-certified buildings include the maximum reduction of internal sources of air pollution; a water supply of outstanding quality; promotion of healthy eating, with nutritional information and elimination of junk food; lighting systems that prevent the effects of glare and visual discomfort; spaces devoted to physical activity, with exercise equipment; and design features throughout the building that help create a relaxing environment.

“When our tenants move in, they will find a living environment that’s optimal for their health and wellness,” said Mathieu Duguay, president of COGIR Immobilier, HUMANITI’s developer. “This initial certification push will surely have an impact on all components of the project. The experience will provide valuable input for our actions going forward.”

Another advantage of WELL Multi-family Residential Certification is that it is scalable, subject to periodic critical assessment and to rating by independent expert laboratories with results guaranteeing that standards are maintained.

“This new and original approach means that real-estate developers and the business community will be more focused on health and wellness concepts,” added Duguay. He continued to say that he believes this project will naturally impose this new trend within Quebec’s real estate sector.

“The business community is getting on board, making human experience and the sharing of societal values a priority,” added the officials from COGIR Immobilier and the Fonds immobilier de solidarité FTQ, which teamed up to make HUMANITI a unique place where living, working, exercise, entertainment and socializing spaces were all designed to promote users’ physical and mental health.

“The transdisciplinary team at Lemay is proud to have contributed to this project from the start, facilitating the integrated design process involving our architecture, interior design, urban planning, and sustainable development teams, and to have had the privilege of coordinating the work to secure both LEED and WELL certification,” said Réal Migneault, Associate and Sustainable Development Director at Lemay.

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