Being Green Isn’t Just for Christmas Trees


green globeFor the past three years, I write an article about green buildings in Miami.  We have only three new entries this year.  The 2012 additions are 396 Alhambra which is a brand new building and its neighbor, 255 Alhambra along with the three Westside Plaza buildings out in Doral.  Here is the complete list of LEED-certified office buildings in Miami.

Building Submarket Level Type
396   Alhambra Coral Gables Gold C&S
1450 Brickell Brickell Gold C&S
Met II (Wells Fargo Ctr) Downtown Gold C&S
1000 Waterford Miami   Airport Gold C&S
Miami Green Coral   Gables Silver C&S
SE Financial Center Downtown Gold EB
255 Alhambra Coral   Gables Gold EB
355 Alhambra Coral   Gables Gold EB
2525 Ponce de Leon Coral   Gables Gold EB
Columbus Center Coral   Gables Gold EB
1221 Brickell Brickell Silver EB
800 Brickell Brickell Silver EB
One Brickell Square Brickell Silver EB
Suntrust Int’l Tower Downtown Silver EB
Douglas Entrance Coral   Gables Silver EB
2555 Ponce Coral   Gables Silver EB
Royal Palm III Miami   Airport Silver EB
Westside Plaza Miami   Airport Certified EB
701 Brickell Brickell Certified EB
701 Brickell Brickell Certified EB

Let’s quickly recap what the two main types of LEED-certification we have for office buildings in Miami. The first is Core & Shell (C&S). This is for new building construction. According to U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), “Core and shell covers base building elements such as structure, envelope and the HVAC system. LEED for Core & Shell is designed to be complementary to the LEED for Commercial Interiors rating system, as both rating systems establish green building criteria for developers, owners and tenants.” This means that the interior build-out (aka the tenants’ offices) could be green, but don’t have to be. It also does not address how the building is operated on a day-to-day basis. For that, we go to our next definition.

Existing Building Operations & Maintenance (EB) according to USGBC “addresses whole-building cleaning and maintenance issues (including chemical use), recycling programs, exterior maintenance programs, and systems upgrades. It can be applied both to existing buildings seeking LEED certification for the first time and to projects previously certified under LEED for New Construction, Schools, or Core & Shell.” That’s interesting. A new building could be LEED certified in two different categories. Typically a building first obtains its Energy Star rating and monitors its systems for at least a year for benchmarking before beginning this process.

These buildings have one common element – good design. Good design enables buildings to run efficiently and easily obtain to these certifications. Congratulations to all those property managers who put in a lot of hard work towards these awards.


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