Communities and Energy – Builders and Developers Leading the Way

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Quest 2014

GLOBE-Net, November 10, 2014 –  As cities and communities continue to recognize and embrace their role in managing energy, there is a need to improve collaboration with the real estate sector.

Consisting of property developers, builders, building owners & operators, consultants and others, the real estate sector possesses key levers for influencing energy use at the community level.

If cities and communities are to realize the full potential of Smart Energy Communities – including improved energy efficiency, enhanced energy reliability, cut costs, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions – then the real estate sector needs to be a key partner.

So what are the key opportunities for the real estate sector to contribute to Smart Energy Communities? And how can municipalities and energy providers collaborate with the real estate sector to make Smart Energy Communities a reality?

Across Canada there are leading real estate sector players who are showcasing innovative approaches to energy.

We can look to developers such as Windmill Developments based out of Ottawa, ON. The 3.5-million square foot Domtar Lands Redevelopment project in the capital region is planning to maximize efficiency and is exploring options from solar and wind to district energy. The project will incorporate innovative transit solutions, like bike paths and light rail to connect with the capital region.

We can also look to Westbank Projects based out of Vancouver. As well as building showcase energy efficient developments across Canada, Westbank recently made a high profile purchase of Vancouver’s downtown Central Heat Distribution district energy network. In doing so, Westbank has embraced a role to not only develop its properties, but to provide efficient energy to these and other communities.

Windmill Developments and Westbank Projects join other leading developers, including Wesgroup and Brookfield Residential, at QUEST2014: Innovation to Implementation, December 1-3 in Vancouver. We’ll hear about leading projects and about the leading collaborations and municipalities and energy providers that are advancing Smart Energy Communities in Canada.

Yet the majority of energy demand in communities comes from existing buildings, which means Smart Energy Communities also involve working with existing building stock. Improvements in building envelopes and in building energy systems as well as the integration of technologies such as Combined Heat and Power and renewables are key opportunities for improving the delivery and efficient use of energy in buildings.

Key partners including the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) and the Condominium Home Owners Association (CHOA), join QUEST at QUEST2014: Innovation to Implementation, December 1-3 in Vancouver to explore the opportunities in existing buildings.

Beyond individual initiatives by the real estate sector, there are also important opportunities for collaboration that need to be fostered in order to successfully advance Smart Energy Communities. The key ingredient here is participating in Community Energy Planning.

Across Canada municipalities are undertaking community energy planning. In fact, approximately 170 communities in Canada, accounting for over half of the Canadian population, currently have a community energy plan. The development of these plans has typically been led by local governments who have been driven by additional revenue opportunities, economic development and jobs, community environmental impacts, and security of energy supply.

These drivers are familiar to the real estate sector. By participating in community energy planning, the real estate sector can ensure that community goals reinforce their own goals, including reducing capital costs of projects, better returns on investment, lower risk project development as well as protecting quality and brand, and serving customers.

A number of sessions at QUEST2014: Innovation to Implementation, December 1-3 will help stakeholders better understand their role in developing and implementing community energy plans, and feature leading practitioners from the City of Edmonton, City of Vancouver, City of Richmond, City of Surrey, City of Guelph, Municipality of North Cowichan, BC Hydro, FortisBC, Corix, Community Energy Association, and many others.

The real estate sector, local governments, energy providers, and other major community energy stakeholders are converging in Vancouver, December 1-3, to explore the innovations and build the partnerships to advance Smart Energy Communities in Canada.


Discounts available for GLOBE-Net Subscribers at
QUEST’s 8th annual Conference & Trade Show
December 1-3, Westin Bayshore, Vancouver


Cities and communities have a key role to play in energy! Get in to the action by joining local governments, energy utilities, the real estate sector, technology and service providers, the energy industry, provincial & federal governments, and other community energy stakeholders at QUEST2014: Innovation to Implementation, December 1-3 at the Westin Bayshore in Vancouver, BC. Special rates available to GLOBE members using promo code GLOBE2014 here.

QUEST’s 8th annual Conference & Trade Show will feature cutting edge panels, interactive roundtables, extensive networking opportunities, the annual QUEST Gala Dinner & Awards Ceremony, and Canada’s only trade show dedicated to building a market place for smart energy communities.

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