Environmental Stewardship

Skyline Head Office Earth Day 2015Skyline staff clean up their communities on Earth Day 2015

Skyline is Green!

When it comes to environmental stewardship in the rental industry, Skyline leads the pack. Sustainable practices are ingrained in Skyline’s company policies, culture, and business model. We understand that “going green” is a win-win decision across all aspects of the company: it benefits Skyline as a corporation, its stakeholders, its tenants and its clients—and the planet. We are constantly on the lookout for ways to learn about, and implement, the latest green technologies, so we can raise standards to a new level. We take our environmental responsibilities seriously, and have made a pledge to continually improve our practices as technology improves.

Skyline co-founders creating a green roof

Green Roof Project - in partnership with the University of Guelph

In late 2013, Skyline contributed, both financially and through the donation of their roof, to a trial project by the University of Guelph. A living (green) roof was installed on the roof of Skyline’s Head Office in downtown Guelph, complete with a smart wire sensor network (which will monitor, report and measure benefits) and irrigation system. The roof, now fully installed, is an active test facility for the University.

"We support our local community whenever we can. The City of Guelph is home to our main office, and this seemed like a great way to contribute to the community," says Roy Jason Ashdown, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of the Skyline Group of Companies.

"We just happened to have a brand new building with a very suitable roof for this application. The Smart wire sensor network will maximize the green roof's performance, and ultimately report and measure its benefits."

Skyline looks forward to exploring opportunities to install more green roofs on its residential properties. "We have a lot of roofs that could potentially benefit from this technology," says Ashdown.

Energy efficient light bulb with Skyline logo

Skyline's Industry-Leading Portfolio Efficiency Plan (PEP)

The Skyline Group of Companies (“Skyline”) is committed to doing its part to help protect the environment. By developing and implementing a Portfolio Efficiency Plan (PEP), it has been able to drastically reduce its carbon footprint across its property portfolios.

Skyline has been diligent in cutting down its energy, water and natural gas usage, as well as reducing waste and improving its recycling rates.

In fact, the PEP has enabled Skyline to reduce its environmental impact by more than 500 million litres of water per year, over 10 million kWh of electricity per year and over 2 million cubic meters of natural gas per year--and these are just a few of the highlights!

These initiatives not only decrease Skyline’s carbon footprint, they also reduce costs and add to the bottom line.  The efficiencies are a strategic part of the effective operations of the Skyline Apartment REIT, Skyline Commercial REIT and Skyline Retail REIT, ultimately creating value for tenants and investors alike.

Sustainability is one of the key tenets of Skyline’s core philosophy of being a responsible corporate citizen. Skyline is accountable to over 25,000 residents who live in its buildings, as well as hundreds of commercial tenants and over 500 employees. It takes this responsibility seriously. That’s why Skyline strives to make improvements every day, prioritizing environmentally sound practices on an ongoing basis.

Skyline is proud of its green accomplishments, and continues to adhere strictly to the PEP with each new building it acquires and as it provides improvements and upgrades to existing buildings. It is committed to continually educating its employees and residents about sustainability best practices. After all, the biggest impact can be achieved when everybody works together!

Read on to find out more specific details about Skyline’s PEP.

Refrigerator Replacement

Refrigerators are a major consumer of electricity in an apartment. Skyline has been able to reduce its electricity consumption by replacing all older refrigerators in its units. The new energy-efficient models use up to 75% less electricity than the older models.

CFL Lighting

Skyline has replaced all incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs in its buildings to CFL lighting. This energy-efficient lighting can use up to 80% less electricity than the older, inefficient bulbs. These fixtures reduce hydro consumption by 9,000,000 kWh per year across the portfolio.

Heat Reflectors

Skyline has installed heat reflector panels into many of its buildings that rely on radiant heat. Heat reflector panels are placed behind the radiator, and the aluminized surface reflects 93% of the infra-red heat that is normally absorbed by the wall, so that the heat is distributed back into the room. Installing these devices has allowed Skyline to lower the temperature on its boilers and save energy while producing the same amount of heat in the units.

High Efficiency Laundry Equipment

Skyline is working with its laundry providers to install new, high efficiency, front-load washing machines in its buildings. These machines will use less water and less detergent.

Toilet, Showerheads, Aerators and Sink Plugs

Toilets are replaced with low-flow models. The new toilets save as much as 15 litres of water per use. Also, by installing low-flow showerheads, Skyline has reduced the water used for bathing by about 30%. Sink plugs have also been provided. By using these plugs, less water is used when shaving or washing the face. The plugs also help decrease the amount of water used for daily hygiene. Aerators have been installed on all kitchen taps. These devices have a filter that prevents too much water from escaping. By installing these devices, the amount of water being used when the tap is running has been drastically decreased. To date, Skyline has reduced water consumption across its portfolio by over 500 million litres per year.

Electronics & Battery Recycling

The Skyline Corporate Office is also proud and excited to announce its internal recycling efforts among staff. The office takes part in the Guelph wet, dry, recycle system, as well as the recently added Electronic & Battery recycling program. Skyline recycles all single use, rechargeable, button-cell, 9V and lithium batteries in-house from all Skyline electronics. This is a great step forward in helping reduce improper disposal of hazardous material which would otherwise end up in our public landfill sites.

Boiler Replacements

Skyline has replaced over 100 boiler systems to date. By replacing old heating systems with new high efficiency boilers, Skyline has drastically reduced its consumption of natural gas and has lowered its CO2 emissions by almost 2 million cubic metres per year.

"Congratulations to Skyline on its installation of solar energy systems on its buildings in Guelph. This investment in green, renewable energy is a terrific example of the strong corporate citizenship that Skyline is well known for in our community."

- Karen Farbridge, Former Mayor,  City of Guelph

"I applaud Skyline's efforts to continually strive for a higher level of environmental stewardship.  Skyline is a leader in the industry in the application of technology to improve portfolio efficiency."

- Vince Brescia, Former President, Federation of Rental Housing Providers of Ontario

"I applaud Skyline's efforts to continually strive to a higher level of environmental stewardship.  Skyline's innovation to drive down expenses through improved efficiencies is a goal that I have long supported."

- Mike Chong, MP for Wellington-Halton Hills