LEED Certification for Office Buildings

Going Green – Striving for Commercial Building Sustainability

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“Going green” has been a buzz phrase since the late 1970’s. For some, “Going green” meant the old adage “reduce, reuse, recycle”. By the turn of the 21st century, there became a growing interest in using renewable energy (i.e. Solar, wind, natural gas, etc). However, from a developer’s perspective, “going green” has become an aggressive goal to increase sustainability of their structures before, during and after construction without undermining the integrity or stability of the surrounding natural resources or ecology.

Making “Every Building Greener” is the vision and heartbeat of the Canada Green Building Council, the Canadian issuers of the internationally recognized Leaders in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification. Some of the strategies they encourage commercial developers to employ include the following:

During the design & construction phase, “Going Green” would include strategies such as
incorporating greenhouse or garden roofs to help reduce carbon emissions, and restoring or creating gardens around the parameter of the building
large windows for light emission at the design stage
recycling of building materials during the construction stage in order to minimize the exhausting of natural resources to create building materials and reduce “waste” materials going into landfills
the use of renewable energy resources such as Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) cells along the outside of the building to capture solar energy to offset the use of main stream electricity
During the interior design and construction stage, “Going Green” strategies could include
constructing the interior layout to maximize natural light emission throughout each floor
utilizing energy efficient light bulbs and light sensors to automatically dim or brighten lights based on the amount of natural light coming into the building
utilizing high thermal mass insulation in ceilings and walls to help minimize the energy used for heating and cooling
installing water-saving toilets
installing living walls or indoor garden areas to control carbon dioxide emissions and improve air quality
For Building Operations & Maintenance, “Going Green” strategies would include
keeping the building clean
ensuring comfortable temperature for tenants
encouraging the “reduce, reuse, recycle” programs by providing clearly marked containers throughout the building for waste and recyclable materials
ensuring all replacement materials are either energy efficient, or made from recycled materials
Besides being environmentally responsible, developers that have made it a priority to “go green” have seen their utility costs go down. One company estimates that its water and energy reductions alone have saved $40 million. Outside of the savings, these companies have attracted top quality tenants and employees, and thus have seen their vacancy rates decrease. If that is not an incentive enough to consider “going green”, then I don’t know what is.

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DJ Mcgauley and Associates Inc. is your Office Space Planning, Renovations and Relocation Project Management Company of choice. If a renovation or relocation of your office space is in your plans, please contact us to arrange a no-obligation site meeting. By the end of that meeting, you will know all that would be required to make your office renovation/relocation project a successful reality.

Ask us about our asset management services!

Call 416-239-1931, email info@djmcgauleyandassociates.com or visit our website for more information and to complete our contact form.

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References:

Wikipedia, “Sustainable Development”, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sustainable_development

Canada Green Building Council, Greater Toronto Chapter, “Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) Industry Development Initiative”, http://www.cagbctoronto.org/initiatives/building-integrated-photovoltaic-bipv-industry-development-initiative

Wilcox, D., Property Biz Canada, “CF Trumpets Global Leadership in Corporate Responsibility Report”, April 4, 2017, https://renx.ca/cadillac-fairview-trumpets-global-leadership/

Wikipedia, “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design”, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leadership_in_Energy_and_Environmental_Design

Key Words: Going Green, Energy , building

Tags: LEED, Canada Green Building Council, Facility Maintenance, Sustainability, Commercial Building, construction

Should You Buy New Office Furniture During a Corporate Move?

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outdated office furniture?
Image courtesy of Property Week

During a corporate relocation, you will inevitably ask the question: should you buy new office furniture? Many companies undergoing a corporate relocation will choose to purchase entirely new systems office furniture, while others will hang on to as many pieces as possible. Which decision is right for your company? Here are a couple arguments for and against purchasing new office furniture during an office move.

Keeping the old…

  1. Cost Savings

What do you hate most about the office furniture you have? Will it simply not work in the new space or are you just searching for a new look and feel? It can sometimes be more cost effective to renew instead of replace those worn out or squeaky chairs. If certain pieces can still be freshened up by having them reupholstered and refinished, you get the best of both worlds while saving money along the process.

  1.  You can get LEED points by repairing your furniture

LEED certification gives credits for waste management, recycled content, and materials reuse. You can also get additional credit if you use pieces with lower VOC emissions. If you’re serious about getting LEED-certified—and it’s long been proven that having LEED certification is good for business—then you might want to hold on to your furniture during your corporate relocation.

Bring in the new…

  1. Ergonomics

If the office chairs have seen their years and simply aren’t good for the spine or resting of the arms, etc., then you’re putting the productivity of your employees and, ultimately, the profitability of your company at stake. Invest in your employees’ health by buying new office furniture while also investing in your company’s net worth.

  1. You need a new look now

If you’re moving into a new office with bold colors and a chic design, your old, dated furniture might ruin the entire look you’re going for. If you need a new look and do not have the time to refurbish, or if no amount of work will hide the old-fashioned bones of the furniture, new and contemporary furniture might be exactly what you need to complete the look of your new office.