A non-descript 1970s-era office building in downtown DC just became cutting edge. Newly renovated, its fifth and sixth floors are now home to the U.S. Green Building Council Headquarters, which recently won Platinum-level LEED certification. “It’s arguably the greenest office space on the planet,” say lead architect Kendall Wilson of Envision Design.
According to Wilson, the USGBC wanted to set an example by drastically reducing energy use. It worked: A combination of natural light and a lighting plan that works at different levels throughout the space has reduced energy output by more than half. In addition, the use of salvaged gumwood paneling and recycled furnishings, fabrics and carpets reflects an eco-friendly mantra. Indoor plants, water features and long-distance views of the outdoors all emphasize a connection to nature.
"The big take-away,” Wilson says, “is that if you can do a smart interior it will have a huge impact.”
RENOVATION ARCHITECTURE: Kendall P. Wilson, FAIA, FIIDA, LEED AP, principal in charge; Rod Letonia, AIA, LEED AP, project director,
Envision Design, PLLC, Washington, DC. CONTRACTOR: James G. Davis Construction, McLean, Virginia.