Vancity Centre in Vancouver has been awarded LEED Gold certification (Existing Building) by the Canada Green Building Council. This certification represents the second highest level of recognition for LEED Green Building, and the designation reinforces the credit union’s commitment to the future of responsible and sustainable energy use.
LEED-certified green buildings reduce waste, conserve energy, decrease water consumption and improve operating cost efficiencies. Overall, buildings have a healthier indoor environment through better indoor air quality, the use of less harmful products and more natural daylight.
Vancity was awarded the Gold certificate under LEED’s Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance (EB:OM) category, a challenging and notable accolade to achieve when compared to new buildings.
The building at 183 Terminal Avenue, Vancouver, achieved Gold certification by meeting criteria in six categories including; sustainable sites, water efficiency (38 per cent reduction in consumption), energy and atmosphere (14 per cent electricity savings), materials and resources, indoor environmental quality and innovation in design.
“We’re very proud of this accomplishment for Vancity, especially since meeting the certification requirements are so much more difficult for existing buildings than for newly-designed ones,” said Jeremy Trigg, Vancity’s director of facilities and environment management. “It’s another case of Vancity walking our talk when it comes to low-impact living and reducing carbon footprints.”
Vancity Centre’s LEED EB:OM Gold certification follows the gold certification for accessibility it received in 2019 (along with the Burnaby Heights Community branch) under the Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification program.
This is the latest major step Vancity is taking to create inclusive, healthy, welcoming and sustainable spaces for its members and employees, while modelling what it means to be a different, values-based, financial institution.
In addition to Vancity Centre, the credit union has nine other branches that have achieved LEED certification. Vancity was the first financial institution in North America to go carbon neutral.