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GREEN LEAD | Green Building News from CoStar

A Monthly Update on Environmentally Sustainable Design, Construction and Maintenance News for Commercial Real Estate (December 2011)
January 12, 2012

GREEN LEAD is a column on environmental and sustainable design and construction, best practices for green building maintenance and operations, economic impact on developers and owners, new LEED and Energy Star building certifications, and trends in the Green Building movement.
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Defense Budget Takes Shots at LEED Certifications for Military Bldgs
by: Randyl Drummer

The new $662 billion defense budget signed by President Barrack Obama on Dec. 31 has no shortage of critics, and a provision tucked into the massive spending bill now ensures that green building and sustainability advocates will join the growing list of detractors. H.R. 1540, known as the National Defense Authorization Act, authorizes defense and military funding for the 2012 fiscal year. The bill has drawn fire from human rights groups and civil libertarians for provisions that they say in effect expands the military's authority to detain, interrogate and prosecute suspected terrorists.

However, the massive appropriations legislation, which runs 565 pages, contains a few paragraphs and bullet points of new provisions that prohibit the use of Department of Defense funds for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold or Platinum certification -- the highest ratings for sustainability and energy efficiency awarded to commercial buildings by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).

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This bill was announced less than a year after the Wounded Warrior Barracks at Camp Pendleton in California received the Marine Corps' first ever LEED Platinum Certification, the highest level granted under the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program. Green: It's Not Just For Camouflage Anymore.


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JLL Reaches Goal of 1K Energy & Sustainability Accredited Professionals
Firm Completes Goal One Year Early, Boasts Expertise in 29 Countries

Jones Lang LaSalle finished 2011 with 1,075 professionals accredited with LEED or other energy and sustainability designations, exceeding its publicly stated "Accredit 1K" goal to reach this number by the end of 2012 - one year early.

When the goal was communicated internally in May 2011, the global commercial real estate service firm employed approximately 650 sustainability-accredited professionals. At the time, it was thought that adding another 350 accredited staff in eight months would be a daunting task. But as it turned out, the response was so strong from clients, business leaders and professionals, that JLL increased classes at its Sustainability University to meet the demand from employees for earning the designations while continuing to perform their regular responsibilities.

Jones Lang LaSalle also has secured energy and sustainability certification at more than 200 buildings and commercial interiors around the world. The firm has installed or advised on 1,400 megawatts of wind and biomass energy projects, and in 2010 reportedly saved clients more than $128 million in energy costs and avoided 563,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

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City Place Tower Earns LEED Silver
KBS-Owned Office Tower in West Palm Beach Takes Green Building Honors

CityPlace Tower, the 18-story, 297,652-square-foot, class A office building delivered in 2008 at 525 Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach, FL, has been awarded LEED Silver certification by the US Green Building Council (USGBC).

Building owner KBS Real Estate Investment Trust II, a non-traded REIT, has undertaken certification efforts since acquiring the property in April of this year for $126.5 million according to CoStar data.

The LEED rating is a national benchmark for the design and operation of environmentally sustainable buildings based on a variety of green initiatives including energy savings and water efficiency. Upgrades to this property include the installation of a condenser water recovery system allowing City Place Tower to save an estimated 800,000 gallons of water per year while saving 288,000 tons of cooling just since June.

The building is constructed to 'hurricane-resistant' code with full back-up power capabilities, and is located at the south entrance to the 1.9 million-square-foot City Place mixed-use project. The building was awarded an Energy Star label in 2010 for its operating efficiency.

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Two Houston Center Earns LEED EB Gold
by: Page Levendis

Two Houston Center in Houston's central business district achieved LEED EB Gold status, joining the other office buildings located within the Houston Center complex and The Shops as Houston Center to achieve the certification and becoming the largest mixed-use complex in Texas to complete this level of certification. JP Morgan Chase owners 2 Houston Center and Crescent Property Services is the manager.

In addition to Houston Center, Crescent oversees six other properties in Houston that are LEED EB certified: 5 Greenway Plaza; 9 Greenway Plaza; and 11 Greenway Plaza; and, One Post Oak Central; Two Post Oak Central; and Three Post Oak Central.

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Crescent Completes Site Acquisition, Begins Work on $47M Apt. Project
Circle Ninth Street is Fourth Multifamily Project Firm Has in Development and Second in Raleigh-Durham

Crescent Resources said it will begin construction on the $47 million, 303-unit Circle Ninth Street multifamily development after completing the acquisition of a six-acre site on Ninth Street next to the historic Erwin Mill building.

The inter-connected four-building project incorporates design elements from the neighboring mill building and other former industrial structures in the area, while incorporating modern materials and construction methods designed to meet Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification requirements from the U.S. Green Building Council.

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CITGO Bldg Earns LEED Gold
by: Andrea Lester

Franklin Street Properties Corp. earned the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Gold certification for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance for its office building at 1293 Eldridge Parkway in Houston, TX.

The five-story, 248,399-square-foot property was constructed in 1998 and is located within the Eldridge Parkway Plaza Development in West Houston. The building is fully occupied by CITGO. CBRE manages the structure for Franklin Street.

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WPP's Young & Rubicam Commits to 340,000 SF at 3CC
SL Green Signs Anchor to 125,000-SF Lease, 214,000-SF Condo Interest Purchase

WPP's Young & Rubicam Group is relocating Y&R, Wunderman, and their network companies to 340,000 square feet at SL Green Realty Corp. and The Moinian Group's iconic 3 Columbus Circle office tower.

Under the agreement, the anchor is acquiring a 214,372-square-foot condominium interest covering floors 3 - 8, and is entering into a 20-year lease for an additional 124,760 square feet on floors 9 - 10 and 18 - 19.

The 26-story, 768,565-square-foot, 5-Star office tower is located at 1775 Broadway in New York City, between 57th and 58th Streets at Eighth Ave. in Manhattan's Columbus Circle submarket. It was built in 1904 with recent renovations and redevelopment to include high visibility glass facade, state-of-the-art infrastructure with tenant-controlled HVAC, and a new lobby and elevator cabs. The building is expected to achieve LEED Silver certification.

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Tower at 321 N Clark St Earns LEED Gold
by: Robert Boyd

Hines, an international real estate firm, earned the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Gold for Existing Buildings certification for 321 N. Clark St. at Riverfront Plaza in Chicago, IL.

The 35-story, 896,502-square-foot office building was constructed in 1987 and is recognized as an example of Chicago's modern architectural legacy. The property earned its fourth Energy Star rating this year.

The tower is 76% occupied and tenants have joined the initiative to reduce their respective carbon footprints, which assisted in obtaining the top LEED certification. Building features such as low-flow aerators, LED lighting and optional Saturday HVAC requests for tenants not occupying their space during weekends played a major role in its certification.

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Moffitt Cancer Center Inks 129,000-SF Deal
Tenant to Consolidate Area Business Units at Intellicenter I in Tampa Telecom Park

Moffitt Cancer Center has signed a 128,759-square-foot lease at Intellicenter I, located at 12653 Telecom Dr. in Tampa, Florida.

The tenant will relocate its business and administrative support functions from around the region to this new facility by the end of 2013. The move is part of a strategic plan to increase operational efficiency across its real estate portfolio so as to free up space at its main campus for mission critical functions and to better serve its patients, according to Dean Head, vice president of facilities management and construction for Moffitt.

Intellicenter I is a 200,000-square-foot, four-story, class A office building. It was completed in 2008 on more than half an acre in the newly developed Telecom Park. In 2009 the property was awarded LEED Silver certification by the US Green Building Council, boasting reflective roofing and energy-efficient glass that allows 75 percent of the work areas to receive day lighting.

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Obama, Clinton Unveil $4B Green Building Program
by: Randyl Drummer

President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton announced a $4 billion effort to improve energy efficiency in federal and private-sector buildings across the country over the next two years.

During a tour and press conference at 815 Connecticut in northwest Washington, D.C., a Transwestern managed property, Obama and Clinton unveiled commitments which are part of the Better Buildings Challenge, targeted at reducing energy use in commercial buildings by 20% by 2020.

The announcement builds on more than a dozen commitments by the private sector announced at the Clinton Global Initiative in June to make energy upgrades across 300 million square feet and to invest $500 million in private financing in energy efficiency projects.

The president directed all federal agencies to fast-track at least $2 billion worth of energy efficiency upgrades over the next two months. Some 60 private companies, hospitals, cities, states, colleges and universities and other organizations have committed another $2 billion in energy efficiency retrofits to a total of 1.6 billion square feet of property.

The energy efficiency program at 815 Connecticut employs around 250 full-time workers and will save the 240,000-square-foot building $200,000 a year on its energy bills. Transwestern and its development partner, DRI, Inc. are working on a renovation and modernization project to replace the exterior façade and major mechanical, ventilation and control systems to reduce utility expenses and improve indoor environmental quality. To date, the energy efficiency measures that have been completed are saving almost $200,000 per year at the location, or nearly $1 per square foot, the company said.

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