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Google Puts Plans for Beyond LEED Platinum Offices On Hold

Google Living Building Plans

Well over a year ago, I heard William McDonough was working with Google on some green design plans near the Googleplex (all hush hush-type stuff covered by an NDA).  Since that time, I haven’t really noticed much information on those plans, that is, until I caught this article in Mountain View Voice talking about Google’s extraordinary building plans.  It appears that SHoP Architects coordinated the work of several architectural firms to get these preliminary plans going.  But, for the time being, Google has decided to put the green office structure on hold. 

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Photo Tour: Swaner EcoCenter, the Greenest Building in Utah

Swaner EcoCenter

The other day I was able to tour Swaner EcoCenter with the Salt Lake City Professional Chapter of Net Impact.  I took several pictures in an attempt to let you see everything I saw, so scroll down and make sure to visit the Swaner EcoCenter flickr set for more views.  Although I’m an amateur when it comes to taking photos, I hope you get the idea how impressive this building is.  It has beautiful woodwork, artful touches of 3form, and incredible views.  The folks behind Swaner are seeking to obtain the first LEED Platinum certification in Utah, but nonetheless, the building is the greenest in Utah. 

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California Finds the Missing Piece of the CO2 Emissions Puzzle

California Sprawl - SB375

This article was written by Charles Lockwood, a green real estate authority and consultant based in southern California and New York City.  His articles have appeared in the Harvard Business Review, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Barron’s.

California—the state that invented freeways and suburban sprawl—has become a trendsetter again, and not a moment too soon in our new age of global climate change.  In October 2008, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law SB375, which was supported by environmentalists, homebuilders, and cities and counties.  SB375 will limit the state’s CO2 emissions by curbing suburban sprawl and increasing transit-based development through various incentives. 

If a community plans walkable, mixed-use, transit-oriented growth that reduces automobile use and greenhouse gas emissions, for example, it gets moved to the front of the line for state and federal transportation funds.  If a proposed building is located near a transit line, it will have an easier environmental review process.  Why is SB375 important?

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