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July 22 2008 Media Release

Immediate release
July 22, 2008

Victoria's Dockside Green Community sets world record for highest LEED environmental sustainability rating for a new construction project

Victoria, BC, Canada - Dockside Green, a mixed-use residential and commercial real estate development in Victoria, has received the world’s highest rating for environmental sustainability for a new construction project through the Canada Green Building Council.

The first master-planned development to target LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certification, Dockside Green has achieved the highest rating in the world at the Platinum level in the category of new construction. The first phase of the development - which includes 95 homes in two condo buildings, townhomes and commercial space - achieved 63 points out of a possible 70.

“We are creating a blueprint for how healthy buildings and healthy communities can be created,” says Elain Duvall, chair of the board of directors for Vancity Enterprises. “Vancity and our members are enormously proud of this achievement, but true success will be in inspiring the world to follow our lead.”

“Dockside Green is one of the most innovative green community developments in North America, and a model for community development to follow,” says Thomas Mueller, president and CEO of the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC). “Dockside demonstrates what can be done with the financing tools and industry knowledge we have available today—there is no reason not to develop this way.”

The LEED Green Building Rating System™ is a voluntary, consensus-based certification program for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings. Through a third party review process conducted by industry experts, the system rates projects based on a points system that was developed by the U.S. Green Building Council and adapted for Canada by the Canada Green Building Council.

Dockside Green achieved full points in the categories of sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, indoor environmental quality, and innovation and design process through the use of:

  • Biomass gasification District Energy System utilizing wood-waste to create all heat energy and hot water
  • Improved building insulation, high performance glazing and shading leading to significant building energy savings
  • Exhaust air energy (heat) recovery
  • Reduced lighting power densities with energy-efficient fixtures and occupancy sensors
  • Treating 100% of waste water in an on-site plant
  • Reducing indoor potable water use by over 65 per cent with dual flush toilets, low-flow fixtures, and use of treated water for flushing toilet, irrigation and water features
  • Green roofs and naturalized creek on site

Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair with the US Green Building Council says, “Dockside Green and Vancity Credit Union are to be commended for this significant achievement, and the leadership they have shown with this project sets a high bar for all of us. They are also participants in the US Green Building Council’s LEED for Neighborhood Development pilot, helping us move the benefits of LEED from beyond the building’s footprint into the community where it’s located.”

Joe Van Belleghem with Windmill West, owner and partner of Dockside Green with Vancity, says achieving the highest standard of LEED was a top priority from the inception of the project.

“We said we would build to the highest rating in LEED Platinum right from day one. I think some people thought we were nuts, but we persevered. I hope it shows that it can be done and that it should be done,” says Van Belleghem, who is a founder of the Canada Green Building Council and has been a board member of the U.S. Green Building Council.

In fact, the Dockside team members and Vancity were so committed to achieving the highest LEED rating possible that we offered to pay a $1 million penalty to the City of Victoria if they didn’t hit the mark. The goal now is to continue to achieve this rating through the remainder of the project.

About Dockside Green
Under construction in the heart of downtown Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, Dockside Green is shaping up to be a community like no other. Developed by Vancity and its partner Windmill West, Dockside Green is transforming 15 acres of harbourfront industrial land into a community of the future, complete with residential, office, retail and commercial space. The first residents moved in this spring. For more information go to

About Vancity
Vancity is Canada's largest credit union, with $14.1 billion in assets, 392,000 members, and 59 branches throughout Greater Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria and Squamish. Vancity owns Citizens Bank of Canada, serving members across the country by telephone, ATM, and the Internet. Both Vancity and Citizens Bank are guided by a commitment to corporate social responsibility and to improving the quality of life in the communities where they live and work.

About Windmill West
Windmill West is a development partnership dedicated to designing and building only the best green urban environments. They are an owner and partner of Dockside Green. With Dockside Green as the keystone project, Windmill West is co-chaired by Joe Van Belleghem, director of Dockside Green and creator of Dockside Green's green building development strategies, and Jack Julseth, co-founder of Three Point Properties, one of Vancouver Island's leading real estate developers.

The Canada Green Building Council
The CaGBC is the leading national industry organization advancing green building practices for livable communities. It represents 1,800 member organizations involved in the design, construction, and operation of buildings. The Council implements the LEED® Green Building Rating System in Canada. For more information on the CaGBC, visit

The U.S. Green Building Council
The U.S. Green Building Council is a nonprofit membership organization with a vision to create sustainable built environments within a generation. Its 16,500 members include corporations, builders, universities, government agencies, and other non-profit organizations. For more information visit

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