In August 2007, OEM's headquarters achieved a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification. Awarded by the U.S. Green Building Council (USBC), LEED certification identifies the New York City Office of Emergency Management's building as a pioneer in sustainable design.
On August 15, 2007, the U.S. Green Building Council presented the LEED certification plaque to OEM and architect firm Swanke Hayden Connell & Partners LLP.
Sustainable design was one part of an overall approach to OEM's construction that included building a facility that was respectful of its physical surroundings, the environment, and the employees that would occupy the building. OEM headquarters received 34 points toward USBC certification:
- 9 for sustainable site planning
- 4 for water efficiency
- 2 for energy and atmosphere
- 4 for materials and resources
- 10 for indoor environmental quality
- 5 for innovation
Some of OEM's sustainable features include:
- Reduced Heat Island Effect
- OEM's roof is surfaced with light colored material including pavers made from recycled content. These materials help to reflect sunlight rather than absorb it.
- Reused Materials
- The columns and floors of this building are reused from the superstructure of a former Red Cross Headquarters.
- 20% of the materials in the building were manufactured locally.
- During construction, 50% of construction waste was diverted from landfills.
- Low-Emitting Materials
- The materials in the building contain low volatile organic compounds including the paint, furniture, adhesives, and carpet. OEM has also installed high efficiency air filters and CO monitors to track the quantity of fresh air being provided.
- Water Efficiency
- The building uses 33% less water than a conventional building by employing low flow fixtures and waterless urinals and eliminating the need for landscape irrigation by using native species of plants.
- Indoor Environmental Quality
- The new facility controls indoor chemical & pollutant sources by providing dedicated exhaust for janitors’ closets and printer areas.
- The windows in this building have efficient thermal properties. They reduce solar heat gain which lowers the overall amount of energy that must be used to cool the building to a comfortable temperature.
Read the press release
Learn more about LEED (at U.S. Green Building Council)