|Coop Name: Desjardins Group||N° of Employees: 45,219|
|City: Lévis||N° of Members: 5800000|
|Country: Canada||Year of formation: 1900|
|Website: http://www.desjardins.com||Twitter: Link|
With more than 6 million members and clients, Desjardins Group is the largest cooperative financial group in Canada. As an International Co-operative Alliance member, Desjardins shares the same ideals as thousands of cooperatives around the world. These ideals are expressed through a set of values that defined the cooperative identity since the very start. For more than 40 years, its component Développement international Desjardins (DID) has been working with developing and emerging countries towards the goal of sharing the expertise and experience of Desjardins and helping local communities set up their own financial cooperative networks. DID’s goal is to provide disadvantaged communities around the world with access to secure, diversified financial services that fit their needs. Find stories from Desjardin Group and DID below.
The new Desjardins building in Lévis houses the tallest interior living wall in the world with more than 11,000 individual plants artfully arranged according to colour, texture, pattern and size covering a 15-storey wall of the new building at 150 rue des Commandeurs, in Lévis. The artwork, “The Currents”, was designed by Green over Grey, a design firm specializing in the creation of living walls (aka green walls or vertical gardens). For this project, they drew inspiration from the views of the St. Lawrence River visible from Quebec City and Lévis.
“When Desjardins began work on revitalizing the Cité Desjardins de la coopération in 2011, we wanted to find a tangible way to show our commitment to sustainable development and enrich our employees’ work environment through meaningful initiatives, such as this beautiful living work of art. This impressive vertical garden in the new building at 150 rue des Commandeurs, in Lévis goes a long way in creating a pleasant and unique environment in which our employees can continue to thrive,” stated Monique F. Leroux, Chair of the Board, President and CEO of Desjardins Group.
“According to our research, this living wall is the tallest indoor vertical garden in the world,” said Patrick Poiraud, co-founder of Green over Grey. “The wall is fully hydroponic (i.e. soil-free) and incorporates plants that thrive in similar vertical environments found in nature, like on tree branches and next to waterfalls. The end result is a visually pleasing piece that provides cleaner indoor air and improves both the acoustic quality and the value of the property.”
The green wall complements the new building’s eco-friendly concept, which is expected to receive LEED gold certification after completion September 2014.