Mayor Newsom announces expedited permit processing for green building
(September 28, 2006)
New directive issued to help kickoff West Coast Green Residential Building Conference and Expo
SAN FRANCISCO – Mayor Gavin Newsom today announced that The Department of Building Inspection (DBI) - in close cooperation with the Department of Environment (DOE) and the Department of Planning - is finalizing a new directive that gives priority permit review to all new and renovated buildings that qualify for the LEED Gold rating or equivalent. The announcement comes on the heels of the kickoff for the West Coast Green Residential Building Conference and Expo at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium - the largest residential green conference in the United States. If approved by the Building Inspection Commission, DBI will begin implementing this fast-track process in October.
The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification program was adopted by the U.S. Green Building Council to provide a definitive standard for what constitutes a "green building". It is now the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance 'green' buildings. Promoting a whole-building approach to sustainability, LEED rates performance in five key areas: sustainable site development; water savings; energy efficiency; materials selection; and indoor environmental quality.
"This directive provides incentives to encourage more developers to 'go for the gold'," said Mayor Newsom. "Expedited LEED Gold certification means more energy-efficient buildings for our city. It is a way for San Francisco to attract substantial economic investment, while also implementing socially responsible architecture," continued the Mayor.
Planning Director Dean Macris has already implemented a priority review process for LEED certification. DOE projects that the directive could yield about 6 green buildings per year, if 20% of LEED registered buildings attempt Gold certification. The department is currently processing one priority green building application, with two more pending.
The bottom-line return on investment from LEED Gold buildings is estimated to produce savings of $50 per square-foot, while additional costs are under $5 per square-foot to build - a ten-fold return. DOE's Green Building Program has developed a web-based project information and reporting tool (www.sfgreenprint.org) that quantifies both the financial and environmental benefits that accrue to a building owner based on achieving a LEED certification. The New California Academy of Sciences, slated to achieve LEED Platinum, is projected to save $337,000 per year in energy and water savings compared to the minimum standards that building codes would allow.
To earn LEED certification, a building must be registered with the U.S. Green Building Council. It then merits Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum ranking by meeting specified prerequisites and performance "credits" within each of these categories. Thus, to earn LEED Gold requires a project to achieve at least 40 out of a possible 69 total credit points - significantly higher than LEED Silver, but below LEED Platinum.
Since LEED's unveiling as a national standard, the number of projects around the country seeking certification has climbed from 45 in 2000 to more than 200 in 2005. Several cities, including San Francisco, Portland, Seattle and Austin, have adopted the LEED standard for government-funded projects. LEED's growing popularity signals the rise of a new approach to development - and a firm commitment to better, healthier spaces for occupants while insuring a lighter impact on our natural environment.
West Coast Green takes place September 28-30, 2006. 250 exhibitors showcase the latest resource-efficient technology, while over 100 experts and visionary leaders present developments in green building to approximately 6,000 attendees.
San Francisco Data
7 LEED Certified Buildings in San Francisco
Chong and Partners Architecture - CI Gold
HOK Architecture - CI Certified
Knoll Furniture Showroom - CI Silver
Natural Resources Defense Council - CI Gold
Swinerton Builders - EB Gold
UCSF Cell and Tissue Biology Laboratory -CI Certified
Glumac San Francisco Office - CI Silver
29 Pending LEED Buildings in San Francisco, including
18 LEED New Construction including
Orchard Hotel (First LEED Hotel in U.S.)
California Academy of Sciences
Laguna Honda Hospital
GSA Federal Building
San Francisco Waldorf High School
Total square footage of buildings in SF that are LEED Certified and LEED Registered - 8,335,109 sq. ft.
City Requirements for Municipal Buildings
LEED Silver rating required for any new construction and major renovations over 5,000 sq. ft. (adopted 2004)
San Francisco Municipal Green Building Projects as of July 11, 2006
|California Academy of Sciences
|SF Rec and Parks
|Laguna Honda Hospital
|SFPUC Operations Center
|San Francisco History Museum
|Hist. and Museum Soc.
|Sustainable Garden Center at Strybing Arboretum
|SF Rec and Parks
|West Field Cargo Development
|Treasure Island Redevelopment
|San Francisco Green Communities 561 units
|MOH / MOCD
|One South Van Ness Avenue
|Civic Center Relocation Projects
Environmental Impact of Buildings (commercial and residential) (Per USGBC)
- 65.2% of total US electricity consumption
- 48% of total US primary energy use
- 46% of total US greenhouse gas emissions
- 136 million tons of construction and demolition waste in the US (approx. 2.8 lbs/person/day)
- 12% of potable water in the US
- 40% (3 Billion tons annually) of raw materials use globally
Department of the Environment, City and County of San Francisco
11 Grove Street, San Francisco, CA 94102
Telephone: (415) 355-3700 Fax: (415) 554-6393
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.sfenvironment.com