Monday LEEDoff: Gale International/U-Life Northeast Asia Headquarters, Incheon, South Korea

The New York office of HOK has released plans for South Korea’s first LEED Platinum commercial office building in the Songdo IBD in Incheon.

HOK’s New York office recently released its design for a five-story, 55,000-square-foot commercial office building in the Songdo International Business District (“IBD”) in Incheon, South Korea (online renderings of the tower do not appear available yet). Developed by Gale International in collaboration with POSCO E&C, the Gale International/U-Life Northeast Asia Headquarters Building will aim for the country’s first LEED Platinum rating.

The master plan for the Songdo District was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox and is a LEED for Neighborhood Development (“LEED-ND”) Pilot Project. Scheduled to open in the fall of 2009, the 1,500 IBD is adjacent to the Yellow Sea and sits upon reclaimed land. HOK is designing seven towers in Songdo, one of which is a 322-room, 25-story hotel that’s already under construction on the south side of the IBD and is seeking South Korea’s first LEED-certified rating.

HOK’s Headquarters Building will include a number of sustainable design elements in pursuit of its Platinum rating, ranging from rooftop wind turbines, a graywater system, and green roofs, to real-time analysis of building energy and water use. The project team will optimize these monitoring systems and hopes to extend its capabilities throughout the rest of the Songdo project. The steel tower is also composed of a high-performance curtain wall and photovoltaics are integrated into the building’s canopies, as well as placed on the roof. Over ninety percent of interior workstations will receive natural light, and various devices will help shade the building’s south side. ARUP is serving as both the structural engineer and curtain wall designer on the project.

The $25 billion Songdo IBD is the largest private real estate development of all-time. When fully built out, it will offer 45 million square feet of office space, 35 million square feet of residential space, 10 million square feet of retail, 5 million square feet of hotels, and 10 million square feet of public space. It will also include a 100-acre “Central Park,” aquarium, art museum, and a hospital.

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