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Scott Armstrong has recently taken on the role of manager of Halcrow Yolles' sustainability group in Toronto. "I'm thankful that my corporate position has positioned me so that I can put my own personal beliefs into action," he says. "My family and I choose to live downtown, I bike into work, and we buy renewable energy. We're very invested in the community in which we live."
Professionally, one of Armstrong's specialisms is making existing buildings more sustainable. "We're stuck with a lot of buildings that we need to make more efficient," he says. "They far outnumber new construction."
The company has a strong reputation among developers in Toronto for the physical assessment of existing buildings, and has recently found that clients are asking for that to be supplemented by performance assessment. "If an owner is looking to buy a building, it may be more interesting for them to know what they can do to make it more efficient," explains Armstrong. "Or if they are selling, they will be trying
to position it in the market, so it's in their interest to demonstrate that it's sustainable in the wider context."
Armstrong is accredited to carry out assessments under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system, an initiative from the US Green Building Council that is similar to the UK's BREEAM system.
"We don't have an existing building version in Canada yet, but they do in the US, and it will soon migrate to Canada. We're at the leading edge, so that will put us at the top table."