The maintenance company, Les Services ménagers Roy, has received a Défi Virage vert (green challenge) certificate confirming its use of biodegradable products for housekeeping services.
All restaurants that do deep-frying have a “grease trap”; they recuperate all of their used oils and deposit them in a designated container.
Since February 2009, burned out florescent lights are stored in a designated container to be collected by a firm that specializes in the recuperation of the hazardous materials contained in these florescent lights. They are then handled according to the existing rules, in order to avoid mercury contamination of landfill sites.
The Centropolis environmental management program stipulates that: “Centropolis encourages the responsible management of construction waste. Centropolis only does business with reputable contractors who make efforts to reduce waste whenever possible; the contractor must put in place a waste management plan for the construction or renovation project in order to guarantee an environmentally friendly management of residual materials and waste redirection practices.”
A waterless mechanical sweeper cleans the parking areas. Our fountain operates ON a closed circuit, always reusing the same water. All of the toilets in the office buildings are low flow (six litres per flush), which is obligatory for all tenants. As for our retailers, we strongly recommend that they use toilets with six litre tanks. All of the urinals in the office buildings are equipped with presence detectors.
Centropolis also possesses a rainwater management system (Stormceptor) that recovers sediments and, if necessary, hydrocarbons. The system is periodically inspected and emptied. A computerized program controls the irrigation of landscaped areas. It is authorized in relation to the schedule set out by the city of Laval as well as in relation to the actual amount of rainfall on the site.
Centropolis has installed water meters at the restaurants and at retailers, as well as in offices, in order to analyze water consumption and to intervene with the tenants if necessary. Centropolis has made restaurant operators aware of their water consumption. For example, the choice of equipment purchases such as air-chilled refrigerators. We recommend and encourage the installation of presence detectors for taps, toilets and urinals.
Centropolis has also undertaken the planting of a significant number of trees in the expansion of its parking lot, thereby reducing the impact of heat islands as well as improving the visual look of the site and respecting municipal bylaws. Through these works and these plantations, Centropolis offers to its clientele and the community a pleasant urban space that is more respectful of the environment in a time where such initiatives are still too rare.
The parking area was made near La Cordée and Cinémas Cineplex. The urbanization of cities and density of occupation of the area has resulted in the creation of large waterproof areas such as streets, sidewalks, buildings and parking lots. This situation makes it so that rainwater and runoff do not naturally penetrate the soil to return to the water table, which irrigates the land as well as waters the plants, shrubs and trees. The very heavy occupation of the territory has also resulted in cities having to build ever-larger storm water drainage systems, but which no longer meet the existing needs as a result of global warming.
As well, the streets, sidewalks, buildings and parking lots result in another major problem in creating heat islands that are damaging to both the environment and public health.
Understanding this worrisome situation very well, and among the array of numerous initiatives already implemented, Centropolis has made the decision to build its new parking lot, located in the area of La Cordée and Cinémas Cineplex, while respecting the amount of rainwater runoff that the municipal network can support, but also through the creation of an innovative water retention basin. This retention basin, as its name implies, temporarily retains a significant volume of water during periods of intense rain. The water is retained for the time it takes for the municipal drainage system to accept it. This retention basin is innovative in that it is open air and naturalized, contrary to conventional water retention works, which are built in oversized pipes or underground tanks, or even on the parking lot’s surface. It is also innovative because it is combined with a runoff and treatment garden. In fact, the basin absorbs both a part of the rain that falls naturally and the significant amounts generated by major rainfalls. The water that goes through the basin therefore has the possibility of being collected by the perennial plants and shrubs before draining into the garden basin at the bottom.
In this way the rainwater is treated by the plants and microorganisms in the soil by infiltrating deeply, then draining into the water table. A significant amount of water is also absorbed by the plants, which return it to the atmosphere through evapotranspiration.
Centropolis’ efforts are therefore not insignificant. In effect, this allows the water to return more naturally to the soil and into the air. As well, this water is of better quality when it is returned to the municipal network, thereby reducing the strain on the municipal system. By dedicating a part of its property to this retention basin, water treatment and infiltration, Centropolis has created a superior quality green space that allows for an increase in biodiversity and biomass, as well as fighting against heat islands while offering a protected area where birds and small local wildlife can live, be protected and feed.
Centropolis takes part in various environmental protection awareness events such as Earth Hour and National Sweater Day, both organized by the World Wildlife Fund. The first was developed to get the international community to reflect on ways that we can all adopt to eliminate waste and reduce our ecological footprint, and the second invites Canadians to lower the thermostats in order to encourage ecological behavior and fight against climate change.
Centropolis took a “green” turn in 2009 by embarking on an initiative which was both innovative and experimental by replacing a floral ornamental area for a vegetable garden at the Place Centrale. Thus, the vegetables that are grown have unique shapes and colors, whether in the form of leaf, flower or fruit.
This initiative is reminiscient of the history of Laval and its favorable position regarding horticulture and encourages customers to the consumption of fresh vegetables and to have a healthy lifestyle. In addition, this initiative allows Centropolis to reduce its carbon footprint and to do its part in terms of social responsibility by giving the entire harvest from its garden to the Food Bank of Laval, helping to feed families in need.