TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - March 17, 2014) - What turns a condominium corporation into a condominium community? Liberty @ Discovery Place, a condominium located in Pickering, has such a good answer to that question that it is receiving the "Condo of the Year" award for 2013, being presented by the Canadian Condominium Institute - Toronto & Area Chapter (CCI-T) Tuesday, March 18, 2014, at 11:00 a.m.
"Liberty @ Discovery Place can be summed up in one word," says CCI-T President Brian Horlick, "and that word is 'awareness.' They're aware of the needs of their residents, the environment, and the larger community. And they turn awareness into action!"
Vic Persaud, CCI-T's Membership Chair, agrees: "Since it was first built in 2005, Liberty's Board has worked hard to be responsive. In the broader Durham Region condominium community, they were instrumental in establishing the Durham Condo Presidents' Alliance, an organization that represents the needs and concerns of about 3,000 residents to all levels of government."
Liberty has pioneered a service for its seniors. In 2010, under the guidance of 94 years' young resident Aki Nambo, the condo started the Liberty Emergency BUDDY System to address the needs of the building's older residents in the event of medical or other emergencies. Under the System, each participating senior is paired with two volunteers who agree to provide support to that person. Liberty has also met the needs of differently-abled residents through such initiatives as making a wheelchair available in the laundry room, installing railings in elevators and the exercise room, and retrofitting all the garbage rooms with push-button activated automatic doors.
"Liberty is the only condo in Durham that has installed solar panels," says Horlick. "This not only keeps natural gas use to a minimum in summer but, by providing preheated water to the hot water boiler system, reduces such use in colder months,"
The building also provides facilities to enable residents to sort their wet and recyclable garbage right in the building - no more trudging to the parking area! This allows Liberty to divert tons of trash from landfill to recycling.
Many Liberty residents are on fixed incomes, and the Board of Directors has addressed this by developing and implementing a comprehensive budget system and budget plan to help them control expenses and save toward long-term goals.
"Liberty's Board has also prioritized communication with residents," says Persaud. "The property manager's office is in the lobby, making it easy for residents to speak with her. They have an eight-page monthly newsletter and a very active Social Committee, both of which serve to bring residents together."
"In recognition of Liberty's achievements, CCI-T awarded them the 2013 "Condo of the Year" award," says Horlick. "The award consists of a specially designed street sign and a gala award celebration. We'll be making the presentation tomorrow," he says.
According to CCI-T Operations Manager Lynn Morrovat, the "Condo of the Year" award was initiated by CCI-T in 2009 to share the successes of condominiums that are well-governed and offer great places to live. "Many have overcome challenges or have initiated unique programs that make them special," Morrovat says. "Liberty is a great example of a condo that has succeeded through good governance and an emphasis on community spirit."
CCI-T is the Toronto Chapter of the Canadian Condominium Institute, the only national organization representing the condominium community - residents, Boards, professionals and service-providers. CCI-T speaks on behalf of more than 140,000 condo residents in Toronto and Peel, York and Durham Regions.