The innovative and people centric MEC head quarters opened in the False Creek Flats district of Vancouver on October 24. The building is a perfect example of how co-operatives are rooted in their communities. 300 MEC employees moved into a world class, leading edge office space that is planet friendly and a place that encourages active living and innovative thinking.
“For more than two decades MEC has been developing and operating some of Canada’s most advanced green retail buildings,” said CFO Sandy Treagus. “Harnessing that experience and, in turn, adapting and applying it to the development of our new head office was enabled by the support, dedication and skill of our numerous project partners. We are extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished together.”
The building is an investment in sustainability, in the community and in the welfare of MEC employees. It is this is type of leadership and long term thinking that demonstrates the positive impacts of co‑operative enterprises in their communities and the type of thinking that differentiates the co-op model from other types of business.
CEO David Labistour said, “From members and employees to the communities we serve, MEC exists to support people, to help them be active and enjoy the benefits of outdoor recreation. Not only does our new headquarters embody this passion, it is a space that supports the culture, collaboration and innovation required to meet the demands of MEC’s progressive business.”
The “campus” includes water as a central feature. The four-storey 10,400 square metre glass, wood and steel building is alive with natural light and fresh air floods the space. Heat is drawn from geo-thermal wells underground and sensors monitor sunlight to automatically lower and raise blinds and switch lights on and off, continually optimizing the building’s temperature and saving electricity.
MEC’s new head office was designed to meet the Platinum standard of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system, one of the highest green building standards in the world.
Images: Geoffrey Tomlin-Hood