Menkes signs on as a Fitwell Champion
May 16, 2017
Menkes has announced that it is the first Canadian real estate company to become a Fitwel Champion. Fitwel is a new evidence-based building certification system that optimizes occupant health and productivity through targeted improvements to workplace design and operational policies. As an earlier adopter of Fitwel, Menkes will take an industry-leading role in implementing initiatives at its managed office buildings to help promote opportunities for occupants to improve their health and wellbeing.
“We are addressing an emerging trend in the real estate market that employees want work spaces that support their health and wellness goals” said Peter Menkes, President of the Commercial / Industrial Division of Menkes. “Being an active partner in promoting health and wellness in our buildings is an investment in our occupants, tenants and buildings, just as our leadership in sustainability has been.”
Fitwel addresses health within seven health impact categories, including community health, morbidity and absenteeism, social equality, physical activity, occupant safety, and a sense of well-being. Fitwel certification assesses building and workplace features—including the design of stairwells and outdoor spaces, proximity to public transit and fitness facilities, indoor air quality, and healthy food standards—against a baseline of criteria that create a health-promoting environment.
As part of the Fitwel certification process, Menkes has committed to implementing a Real Estate Wellness Program with efforts such as encouraging physical activity, supporting mental health, and promoting nutrition and good hygiene. Specific strategies include encouraging occupants to use the building stairs and making properties more bicycle-friendly. Communications outreach will focus on mental health awareness and promoting healthy food options on-site and within walking distance of the workplace. Another component of the communications strategy will highlight preventative initiatives that support good health, for example hosting onsite flu clinics.