Smoke-free Condo Buildings

December 2015

Toronto City Council has adopted a recommendation that the building industry be encouraged to establish smoke-free condominiums or smoke-free floors within condominiums.

This is supported by a Boston Housing Authority study comparing air quality in smoke-permitted and smoke-free multi-unit housing. The study found that units where smoking took place have higher levels of particulate matter – chemicals that can cause environment or health damage. When smoking residents reported smoking, the level of particulate matter was higher in both the smoking resident’s unit and an adjacent non-smoking resident’s unit

This study provides evidence that buildings which allow smoking in individual units but not in common areas are not as safe as a smoke-free building.

Norway has gone a step further with anti-smoking laws extending to some outdoor areas. At least one condo building, currently under construction, has prohibited smoking on balconies or garden terraces to prevent smoke from wafting into neighbouring units through windows, doors and vents.