TORONTO – For the third year in a row, Diamond Schmitt Architects is among Canada’s Greenest Employers, companies that lead the nation in creating a culture of environmental awareness. The winners of the editorial competition for 2018 were announced today.
The jury said Diamond Schmitt “helps champion the movement towards greener buildings with 39 LEED accredited architects over 30 completed LEED projects as of 2017, with an additional 30 LEED registered projects on the go, including two projects designed to meet the “Living Building Challenge” to be completely carbon neutral, or even better than neutral.”
The company implements green initiatives not only for clients’ projects but also in-house. “We have a sustainable design committee that promotes energy and waste-saving measures throughout the office,” said Birgit Siber, Principal, Diamond Schmitt Architects, and Chair of the committee. “These include bi-weekly seminars about green suppliers and products, an extensive recycling program and expanding our bike storage facilities for the second year in a row.” An office poll revealed only five percent of staff drive to work; others take transit, bike all year or walk to the downtown Toronto studio.
Canada’s Greenest Employers are evaluated on four main criteria: (1) the unique environmental initiatives or programs they have developed; (2) whether they have been successful in reducing their own environmental footprint; (3) whether their employees are involved in these programs and contribute unique skills; and (4) whether their environmental initiatives have become linked to the employer’s public identity, attracting new employees and clients.
Diamond Schmitt researched and developed ecoMetrics, a powerful, interactive visual database of energy simulation models that reveals project performance in relation to energy benchmarking systems. “This creates a common language to engage our clients and consultant and project teams in an informed conversation about establishing appropriate energy reduction targets,” said Siber.
“In the early years of the competition, environmental best practices were largely employee-led and community-based,” said Richard Yerema, Managing Editor of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project, which manages the Canada’s Greenest Employers competition. “Today, the best employers are improving many of those early projects and have established formal initiatives and long-term commitments to help mitigate the harmful impacts of their operations.”
In addition to being among Canada’s Greenest Employers, Diamond Schmitt Architects this year has been named to Canada’s Top 100 Employers, Greater Toronto’s Top Employers, Canada’s Top Small & Medium Employers as well as renewing its position in the Platinum Club of Canada’s Best Managed Companies.
Diamond Schmitt Architects has offices in Toronto, Vancouver and New York City. The firm’s extensive portfolio includes commercial, institutional and residential buildings, performing arts centres, and healthcare facilities. Among current projects is a ten-storey residential tower in London, Ontario targeting net zero carbon; a highly sustainable facility at Red River College in Winnipeg; and the new home for the Senate of Canada in Ottawa.