San Diego, CA, June 15, 2013 --(PR.com
)-- After years of assisting clients in achieving Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for their facilities, Balfour Beatty Construction earned LEED Gold certification for its Southwest Division office location in San Diego, California.
“Our commitment to sustainability goes far beyond helping others achieve environmental design. We work to incorporate this same responsible design into the facilities we occupy and work in,” said Brian Cahill, division president for Balfour Beatty Construction in the Southwest.
Balfour Beatty Construction occupies the third floor of the Cush Plaza Office Building located in Scripps Ranch. Construction of the 22,100 square foot space required full system design and implementation, as the existing structure consisted of the core only. Features of the office retrofit include conference rooms with advanced audio-visual technology, training rooms with retractable screens, a bistro-like kitchen/lunch room, support spaces, and offices to accommodate more than 70 people.
Balfour Beatty Construction worked with design partners IR2 to design and build a space that reflects the company’s collaborative culture and commitment to sustainability.
“We believe in innovation, and to be innovative, you need to be collaborative,” said Sean Hulen, Balfour Beatty Construction vice president and project manager for the build-out. “We formed subcommittees that considered the occupants first, providing open, well lit and comfortable work spaces that were also energy efficient thereby boosting productivity and reducing operating costs. These factors helped us reach our goal of attaining the LEED Gold certification.”
Since moving into the new space in November 2011, the office’s sustainable design solutions have made a significant impact.
“Most recently, energy use in the first quarter of 2013 was 40% below baseline calculations,” said Hulen. “The LEED Gold certification reinforces that we are headed in the right sustainability direction. Now we are striving to continue to find ways to reduce our impact through constant monitoring, aggressive strategies and innovative thinking.”
The resource-efficient office space, and eco-friendly construction practices that created it, moves Balfour Beatty Construction closer to their company-wide 2020 sustainability goals. The following are some of the sustainable features in line with these goals that helped the San Diego office attain its LEED status:
· MV Auto™ Energy Utilization Verification Technology that identifies energy conservation opportunities by analyzing and reporting consumption of electric power used in the space for heating and cooling, as well as for lighting and plug loads. The data obtained is then converted to carbon equivalents which help to track our carbon footprint.
· Energy efficient systems and equipment that significantly reduce monthly operating costs.
· Occupancy sensors that automatically shut off lights in unused rooms.
· Open office space with low partition walls to allow more natural light.
· Energy Star appliances that use less energy than standard appliances.
· Carpeting, paint and office furniture with low volatile organic compounds (VOC), which aids in maintaining good indoor air quality by reducing toxins and contaminants.
· Wall systems that allow for flexibility of office spaces.
· 20% of construction materials contained recycled content thus minimizing the use of virgin materials.
· Copy rooms with a dedicated exhaust system to remove airborne contaminants and create a clean environment.
LEED Gold certification for the San Diego office marks the fourth LEED certified Balfour Beatty Construction office in the United States. The company achieved LEED Gold certification under the LEED for Commercial Interiors (LEED C-I) for their office in Fairfax, Virginia as well as for the third floor retrofit of its office in Dallas, Texas. And in North Carolina, the company achieved LEED C-I Silver certification for its East Region headquarters in Charlotte’s historic South End. LEED for Commercial Interiors is the U.S. Green Building Council’s rating system applicable to tenant improvements in new or existing office space.
LEED is an internationally-recognized green building certification system established by the U.S. Green Building Council, which promotes sustainable building and practices. Balfour Beatty Construction has completed approximately $7.6 billion of LEED or other energy and environmentally certified construction projects, and has more than 400 LEED Accredited Professionals and LEED Green Associates. In 2012, Engineering News-Record ranked Balfour Beatty US the 4th largest Green Contractor in the United States.
For more information on Balfour Beatty Construction’s sustainability initiatives, visit www.balfourbeattyus.com/sustainability.