Project Spotlight: 1115 H Street – Transforming the Neighborhood with LEED Platinum

1115hstreet_front_elevation

Front elevation of the building

The newly constructed five-story mixed-use building located at 1115 H Street, NE is raising the bar with a LEED for Homes Platinum certification in the works. It is targeted to be the first mixed-use building to meet the highest threshold of LEED in DC. Offering 16 high-performance condominiums with an array of sustainable practices, including environmentally preferable products, and water- and energy-conserving fixtures and appliances, the project is contributing to the rapid revitalization of the H Street Corridor neighborhood. Steven Winter Associates, Inc. supported the energy and green building goals for the project, including LEED certification.

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Green Your Holidays

It is the time of year that we splurge, whether it is food, decorations, or gifts. And that’s the way it should be, but why not splurge sustainably? No, I am not saying be a Grinch and don’t eat, decorate or gift, but there are alternatives that add a whole lot of holiday cheer without emptying your pockets or negatively impacting the environment.

Here are some tips and tricks that I use to keep my over-the-top holiday spirit and at the same time feel great about being sustainable throughout these festive months.

The Highlight of the Holidays – Food

Thanksgiving DinnerAh, food. Here’s where it gets tough. How do you stay sustainable when the holidays are the epitome of food leftovers? I mean, there are tons of recipes dedicated to all the leftovers from a very classic turkey sandwich to a very mysteriously filled shepherd’s pie. However, this is also where you can make your biggest mark on how “green” your holidays will be. Read more

2016 New York Energy Codes: Commercial Edition

By Sunitha Sarveswaran, Energy Engineer

Multifmily Buildings

Multifamily buildings greater than three stories follow the commercial section

It has now officially been over one month since the 2016 NYS energy code went into effect. In a recent blog post, we covered some of the significant changes for residential buildings in New York. In this post, we will explore the substantive changes made in the commercial code section, particularly with respect to envelope and air barrier requirements.

As a reminder, in this post, we are referring to retail, commercial, or larger than three-story R-2, R-3, or R-4 buildings. New York buildings can choose between one of two compliance pathways: ASHRAE 90.1 2013 or IECC 2015, by applying the appropriate state and city amendments. Prescriptive as well as performance options are available, depending on the chosen pathway. Read more

Vote for Access 2016!

Is Voting Accessible?

Having lived in Washington, DC for over a decade, I’ve cultivated what some may call a geeky sense of pride in upholding my civic duty to vote. Last Saturday I stood in line at 8am with nearly 200 other Washingtonians, eager to cast an early ballot for the 2016 Presidential Election. I noticed a man using a cane join the line behind me. Further ahead of us was an elderly woman in a wheelchair. My mind started wandering down a path that is all too familiar for those of us on SWA’s Accessibility Team:
Accessible_Voting

Would the front entrance provide access for wheelchair users?
Would clear pathways be provided to registration tables and polling machines?
Have volunteers been trained to provide reasonable accommodations?

Unfortunately, my concerns aren’t unfounded. In a 2008 study, the Government Accountability Office estimated that 73% of polling places used in 2008 had architectural barriers that made access difficult or even impossible for people with disabilities. While Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires state and local governments to provide accessible polling places; the GAO survey showed only 27% of polling places to be accessible to people with disabilities in the 2008 elections.

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Don’t Be Scared of LEED v4

Written by Marina Dimitriadis, Sustainability Consultant

LEED v4 Changes and Updates

leedv4picleedarticleghostpicWe all knew the time was creeping up on us when LEED v2009, known as LEED v3,would no longer be an option. There are plenty of Halloween ghouls about, but LEED v4 shouldn’t give you a scare! We have a few key resources to help you understand the new rating systems and ensure a smooth transition.

LEED v3 Sunset and Registration Dates

All projects that wish to pursue LEED v3 must register  by October 31, 2016. Additionally, LEED v3 projects must certify by June 30, 2021. Projects that register now under LEED v3 can always transition to LEED v4 at no cost, but you can’t switch back to v3 after 10/31/16.

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