Green Reason’s Role
Sustainability Consulting and Design Management
Equitable Bank is Canada’s ninth-largest independent Schedule I bank, serving Canadians coast to coast. It offers a diverse suite of residential lending, commercial lending and savings solutions, including high-interest savings products and GICs. Through its proven branchless approach and customer service focus, Equitable Bank has grown rapidly causing them to look at the future of their expanding workspace with a goal to preserve their collaborative culture and values. The project was a consolidation of offices from various buildings into a single 82,000 square foot workspace over seven floors at Yonge and St. Clair.
What Was Done
Early in the leasing phase, Green Reason worked with the design team to conduct visioning sessions with Equitable’s executive team to help understand and interpret their vision for an ideal workspace. This led to the analysis of various space options using not only the traditional metrics of cost and attrition but ranging to quality of space, sense of community, familiarity, and collaboration opportunities with their landlord. The final space itself was to represent Equitable’s brand and values, be functional, support collaboration and a sense of community (despite being seven floors) and make a responsible environmental statement.
Through collaboration with all team members including the landlord commencing in the leasing phase the following was accomplished:
- Worked with the leasing team to ensure key sustainability features were captured in the lease including tenant metering, LED lighting, low-flow and flush washroom fixtures and improved ventilation rates.
- Developed the entire suite design in collaboration to reduce the amount of site construction, waste and dust.
- All walls except computer rooms and washrooms are constructed of demountable partitions.
- Integrated millwork into a demountable wall system to minimize coordination issues and site installation dust and odour from installations.
- Expanded and integrated existing internal stair connections to allow for ease of access between floors for staff.
- The lighting system reduced power consumption by over 45% below ASHRAE 90.1. Daylight sensors turn off the main lights when there is sufficient daylight, all lights are on occupancy sensors, and light coloured walls and ceilings provide bright, reflective surfaces.
- All new furniture is GreenGuard certified to improve air quality for occupants.
- Over 75% of wood products used on the project are FSC certified to ensure they are from responsibly managed forests
Results Speak for Themselves
The project provided the reinvigorated, collaborative workspace that Equitable had envisioned. Through early collaboration and integration of our team in leasing and design discussions, Equitable was also able to influence decisions regarding landlord upgrades to their space to ensure a healthier, more sustainable workplace that achieved LEED Silver certification.