Couple of quick links below to follow up on some recent posts.
GreenOrder, Inc. (link to its website in the sidebar) has been named to Inc. Magazine’s “Green 50.” I posted about GreenOrder not that long ago after reading an interview that its CEO, Andrew Shapiro, had given to the New York Times. The way Shapiro frames his green building philosophy is, in my opinion, what makes the firm so interesting.
What sets GreenOrder apart from other environmental strategists is its focus on helping clients to maximize their return on investment in sustainability, as GreenOrder’s tagline “Making Progress Profitable” implies. “We know that Big Business is not going to embrace environmental innovation unless it translates to the bottom line,” says Andrew L. Shapiro, GreenOrder’s founder and CEO.
According to Inc., GreenOrder’s results-oriented approach is paying off: “You know you are on to something when some of the largest companies in the world start cold-calling.” Recent clients come from a wide variety of industries, including DuPont, Allianz, and Duke University. Plus, GreenOrder is a force in real estate, having advised Tishman Speyer Properties, Vornado, Destiny USA, Silverstein Properties, whose 7 World Trade Center is the first LEED-certified commercial office building in New York City, and GE Real Estate, one of the largest real estate investors in the world.
Yesterday’s link I posted about the Herman Miller National Design Center didn’t contain much info, so here’s a more detailed write-up of New York City’s first LEED for Commercial Interiors Gold recipient. Designed by Krueck and Sexton,
[t]he 15,400-square-foot sustainable facility, located on the 17th floor of 1177 Avenue of the Americas, earned kudos for water conservation, energy efficiency, and environmentally responsible materials. Lo-flow fixtures shave water consumption by nearly 40 percent, electrical power is supplied by 100 percent certified renewable energy sources, and over 20 percent of the project’s material value is recycled content. In addition, over 80 percent of remaining construction material was recovered and recycled. With its green design plan, the Center earned a total of 37 credit points from the USGBC.
Finally this is one of the better articles I’ve come across discussing green roofs with a focus on New York City. St. Simon Stock Catholic School, located on E. 182nd Street in the Bronx, in cooperation with the Gaia Institute, installed the 3,500 square foot roof in June of 2005.
Mankiewicz estimates that the Bronx has 10 green roofs, including the municipal courthouse across the street from Yankee Stadium. Weight, apart from cost, is the largest obstacle to building more green roofs. “A lower weight soil is important because of the load-bearing limits on rooftops. For existing structures, lighter-weight soil means less restructuring,” Simon explains. The roof on St. Simon can only hold 40 pounds per cubic foot. Most soils weigh 50 pounds per cubic foot.
Mankiewicz and the Gaia Institute solved St. Simon’s problem with Gaia Soil, a growing medium that is 85 percent Styrofoam. The remaining 15 percent is a mixture of agricultural waste, clay slurry and compost that includes ground pumpkin seeds, evergreen trees and “Bronx Zoo Doo” (poop from exotic animals at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s establishment down the road). A cubic foot weighs only 10 pounds. “I started to develop it 25 years ago,” Mankiewicz says. “I’ve grown everything from red pines to vegetables with it.”