BOMA BEST, Fitwel team to promote healthiness in existing buildings

Two leading building certification organizations are partnering to promote health in existing buildings.

Fitwel and BOMA Canada are aligning their programs ascost-effective, high-impact approaches to transforming existing buildings.

“Our BOMA BEST program is already the world leader in improving the sustainability of existing buildings, so it is a natural fit to partner with Fitwel, given its focus on health promotion in buildings,” said Benjamin Shinewald, presidentand CEO of BOMA Canada. “The fact that both our programs are low-cost, high-impact and high-volume makes this partnership even more promising.”

In only 14 weeks, Fitwel has established itself as a healthy workplace market leader, impacting over 165,000 employees. Fitwel is advancing chronic disease prevention and strengthening health promotion worldwide. 

More than 90 projects have been submitted for Fitwel certification, said Joanna Frank,presidentand CEO at the Center for Active Design.

“We have seen remarkable demand for Fitwel since its public launch in February of this year,” she said. “We are committed to leveraging the demand for health-promoting environments into a holistic approach that furthers market transformation that was activated by sustainability.” 

According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, “approximately four out of five Canadian adults have at least one modifiable risk factor for chronic disease (tobacco smoking, physical inactivity, unhealthy eating and harmful use of alcohol).”

By using Fitwel, BOMA Canada is strengthening its healthy workplaces efforts, by contributing to chronic disease prevention in categories such as increasing physical activity, providing healthy food options, reducing morbidity and absenteeism, impacting community health and supporting social equality for vulnerable populations, among others, officials said.

BOMA’s strategic partnership with the Center for Active Design began with the development of a crosswalk between Fitwel and BOMA BEST to identify overlapping strategies between the two systems, with expected publication in fall 2017.

Fitwel and BOMA BEST will provide input at the strategic level to align both systems. The BOMA BEST program is Canada’s largest environmental assessment and certification program for existing buildings in Canada, with more than 2,500 buildings certified in Canada today, and a growing presence in the U.S. It is a unique program that provides owners and managers with a consistent framework for assessing the environmental performance and management of existing buildings of all types and sizes.

According to New York City’s Mayor’s Office of Sustainability, more than 90 percent of the one million buildings that exist in New York City today will still exist in 2050, making existing building stock the greatest opportunity to impact employee health and building sustainability.


Topics: Associations / Organizations, Building Owners and Managers, Great Commercial Buildings, Healthy & Comfortable Buildings, Office Buildings, Sustainable Communities, Technology, Urban Planning and Design

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