5 Lessons for Going from LEED Gold to Platinum
Elevate the building’s prestige. 111 South Wacker is arguably the most desirable office destination in Chicago, given its “corner-of-Main-and-Main” location, striking façade and range of amenities. Anything less than the highest level of green certification would fail to capture the same essence.
Save energy. According to a study sponsored by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED platinum buildings use 40 percent less energy per square foot than the base building code requirement, while the average reduction for LEED gold buildings is closer to 30 percent. Since energy costs are typically passed on to tenants, efficiency improvement translates into lower occupancy costs.
Recognize continuous improvement. LEED certification works on a point system for a range of environmentally-friendly features and management practices. When 111 South Wacker was certified in 2010, the achievable points fell into the 60 to 79 range of gold. By continuing to identify ways to operate more sustainably over the past five years, the building’s owners raised the achievable point score to more than 80 points, the range for platinum certification.
Contribute to corporate social responsibility commitments. Many tenants seeking trophy building space are the same corporations that have set ambitious environmental sustainability goals for achievement by the year 2020. By locating in a green building with LEED platinum certification, tenants can make a stronger statement on their commitment to sustainability to their investors, employees and other key stakeholders.