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Pittsburgh Three PNC Plaza Going Green

Three PNC Plaza

Slated to open in 2009, Three PNC Plaza is planned to be one of the largest, environmentally-friendly, mixed-use buildings in the U.S.  The 23-story building is also Pittsburgh's first new high-rise in 20 years.  3 PNC will have office space, 28 condominiums, a restaurant, retail space, underground parking, and a Fairmont Hotel.  Three PNC Plaza fronts a large public park (see site plan below). 

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GRAFT & Brad Pitt to Team Up for LEED Gold, Five Star Hotel in Dubai

Bradpitt Zabeel Properties just announced details of a new landmark hotel and leisure development for Dubai.  Although no renderings or designs are yet available, Dubai-based Zabeel Properties also confirmed the appointment of LA-based architecture firm, GRAFT, whose team of design consultants for the project will include the Hollywood actor, Brad Pitt.  Pitt’s involvement in the design for the resort demonstrates his interest in green development and architecture.   Says Brad: "Whilst acting is my career, architecture is my passion.   Selecting this development as my first major construction project has been a simple decision.   It will underpin not only my values for environmentally-friendly architecture, but also embrace my career in entertainment."

Sorry for the celebrity gossip bit, but I just couldn’t hold back!  I’m definitely interested in seeing the sustainable design for this new hotel, so we’ll have more details when they’re released. 

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Proximity Hotel Assumes Role as One of the Greenest Hotels in Country

Exterior

Proximity Hotel seems to have found a way to deliver a comfortable, luxury-type experience and still be one of the greenest hotels in the country.  It was built to use roughly 36% less energy and 30% less water than a comparable hotel.  Proximity Hotel also heats over half the building’s water with roughly 4,000 sf of solar thermal panels on the roof.  In the video embedded below, Dennis Quaintance, Chief Design Officer of Proximity Hotel, mentions that the savings from the solar thermal investment is about $20k per year. He also talks about the hotel’s innovative elevator, which is the first Regenerative Drive Otis Gen2 elevator in North America — it captures energy while going down and uses it while going up.

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CityFlats Hotel Stylishly Seeking LEED [Michigan]

Wall Art Bathroom

Eco-boutique CityFlats Hotel is a modern spot in Holland, Michigan that expects to get LEED Silver within the next month.  When certified, it’ll be one of only a few green hotels in the country, which is weird because hotels focus so much on energy and water efficiency.  Some of the bigger hotel companies have announced trendy green hotel brands, but they’re moving slow and in the mean time, we’re seeing eco-boutiques like CityFlats pop up in various locations.

As you can tell from the images, style wasn’t sacrificed for sustainability at CityFlats. 

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A Prefab M-Hotel on the Cusp

m-hotel by tim pyne

I love the possibilities and ideas presented by the m-hotel from Tim Pyne.  That said, I can’t say there’s anything green about the concept (that is soon to be a reality) other than two things, possibly: (1) it’s a non-permanent structure (7-10 years) where the parts can be reused differently in the future and dismantled to make way for a different use on the site, and/or (2) it’s a prefab structure and prefab has the potential for green benefits such as material savings, lower construction waste, and minimized site disturbance, etc.  But still, it’s cool and innovative.  The m-hotel is designed as a series of steel-framed slot boxes that slide into the frame (which makes for easy dismantling in the future). 

The striped m-hotel as you see above is being considered for Sclater Street in London.  If approved, the hotel will have 32 units each measuring 16 x 36 feet (576 sf).  Work may begin as soon as this summer and should be complete by end of the year.  I can’t wait to see the finished product. 

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Destiny USA to Build Green, Create Clean Energy (S2)

Destinyusaphasei

You may have heard about a huge mall, entertainment, tourist project in central New York called Destiny USA.  It’s quite the scheme that’s been in planning for many years.  I just caught news of some of their phase I and II plans for green building and energy.  For the 1.3 million sf Phase I, they retained Tangarie Energy to place sixteen, 5 kW drill-bit shaped wind turbines in the parking lot, which will produce roughly 64,000 – 84,000 kW hours of clean energy.  They also want to be 100% fossil fuel free and energy efficient, so we’ll probably hear more specific details in the future.  The turbines are designed to work well in lower wind speeds and should provide about 30% of their energy needs.   

Phase II will start in 2009.  For that, they’re planning a 1,300+ key hotel tower and conference facility, which will be built to LEED Platinum certification.  The unique looking hotel project, shaped almost like blades of grass, will generate electricity from its solar panel facade and hydro-electric turbines (using rainwater collected on the roof).  Once finished in 2012, it is planned to be the tallest building in upstate New York. 

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