Arizona State’s Lantana Hall Earns LEED for Home Platinum Rating

Green Insight’s mission on any project is simple: Use our expertise in green and sustainable building to work with developers on a project that doesn’t have to sacrifice style for substance, while keeping the bottom line clearly in focus.. 

Arizona State University’s Polytechnic Campus had just the project for us: A student housing facility that features dorms, common rooms, and state-of-the-art offices with a focus on energy efficiency. With this project, Green Insight was integral in helping developers achieve a LEED for Homes V4 Midrise Platinum Rating, the highest rating given by the U.S. Green Building Council, and higher than the project’s initial target of Silver.

Project Details

Lantana Hall, located on Arizona State University’s Polytechnic Campus, was a dormitory project consisting of 120 residential units, space for classrooms, offices, communal kitchens, and common rooms. Most units contained 4 bedrooms and 2 baths while some contained 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms or 1 bedroom and 1 bathroom.

Green Insight was hired by the developer to manage the LEED for Homes certification process, which included LEED for Homes Provider services and LEED for Homes Green Rater and HERS Rating testing and verification. 

Project Challenges

One of the biggest challenges to the project as a whole (which caused other challenges along the way) was its remote location of Mesa, AZ. Working from our Albuquerque, NM headquarters, we were engaged by the project’s developers after the project was already well underway. Therefore, time also became a challenge to ensure successfully meeting all green building standards required and specific standards desired.

Partners in the Lantana Hall project included Capstone Development Partners, CORE Construction, and Shepley Bulfinch Architecture.

Project Solutions

Because we were engaged late in the design process, we began with a comprehensive plan review to verify the building plans complied with the LEED checklist requirements.  Some adjustments were made which proved invaluable to the relatively smooth process going forward.  

Green Insight took full advantage of having the luxury of working in the 21st century. With modern technology, it is no longer absolutely vital for us to be physically present to conduct every inspection and work with project developers.  Using remote video technology, our Green raters were able to hold extra inspections prior to onsite visits to ensure that the time spent on site was utilized efficiently. This cut back on cost greatly as travel back and forth wasn’t necessary for each inspection.

Clear communication from the beginning was vital for all stakeholders, but especially for us coming in late to the game. Communication between us, the builder, and the architect was key to this project’s success. 

The Finished Product

The end of this project was successful on many fronts. First, we met and exceeded all goals for the developer including meeting the standards required for LEED for Homes Platinum rating. 

In addition to this certification, Lantana Hall was also awarded the 2021 Student Housing Business Innovator Award for Best Use of Green & Sustainable Construction/Design. This award honors excellence in student housing properties. Lantana Hall was recognized out of 140 project submissions. Projects were judged on a wide range of criteria including:

  • How the use of green and sustainable construction and development aligned with the university’s forward-thinking mission.
  • How the use of green and sustainable construction and development will assist in achieving short and long term cost savings. 
  • The project achieving a specific LEED rating
  • The number and scope of green and sustainable construction and development that are featured in the project as a whole.

If you’re ready to see how Green Insight can find the perfect solution for your sustainable living project, contact us today.

You will reach one of our team members who will be happy to discuss your project and your goals while showing you how Green Insight can help you with both. 

Platinum Luxury Apartments, Albuquerque Receives LEED Platinum Certification

The challenge was set: How can you create a living experience that is the very embodiment of luxury while still keeping the utility costs low, the construction costs reasonable for the product type, and the utmost sustainability for the planet?

Out of this challenge, Platinum Luxury Apartments were designed and constructed with Green Insight’s assistance. Green Insight brought their expertise during the Schematic Design Phase of the project to create an energy-efficient building with great indoor air quality. 

Using building science and experience from our hundreds of successful multi-family home projects, we know how to conquer current green building and energy code requirements. Furthermore, finding the right rebates and incentives allowed us to exceed building code requirements and meet project sustainability goals. 

As Rick Goldman from Gold Spike put it, “Our development team for Platinum believed that the global sustainability revolution starts at home, so we transformed a blighted site into a LEED platinum building proving that sustainability can be stylish and affordable.” 

Stylish and sustainable, Platinum Luxury Apartments proved this can be achieved.

Project Details

Platinum Luxury Apartments have 75 units within a modern four-story building. Sleek and modern in its design, it was specifically designed to appeal to young professionals who are looking for luxury living with sustainability as a priority. 

Located in the trendy neighborhood of Nob Hill in the heart of Albuquerque, Platinum Apartments also features a communal sky deck that offers breathtaking views of the Sandia Mountains and West Mesa, a yoga studio, a billiard room, electric car charging stations in the parking court, secure storage for bicycles, and a dog wash station. 

Green Insight’s involvement with developers included:

  • LEED for Homes credit verification
  • Testing during construction
  • QAD review
  • Making energy efficiency recommendations
  • Assessing building material
  • Reviewing construction documents, specifications, and project submittals

By partnering with us, Golden Spike Development and Pavilion Construction were able to rise to the challenge of building a luxury apartment building for young professionals while still earning LEED for Homes Platinum certification. 

Project Challenges

This project had its fair share of challenges just like any project. However, in this instance, our biggest challenge was staying within the desired budget of $110 a square foot. Building projects are pricey, and green projects are no exception. 

In our efforts to stay at the targeted budget, we modeled numerous envelope designs, mechanical systems, and podium options to determine which would be the most cost-effective when it came to the building. If one didn’t get us there, it was back to the drawing board until we hit the target. 

Luckily, there are a lot of rebates and incentives when it comes to green building to make sustainability more of a priority in construction. We were able to account for all rebates and incentives this project qualified for and used them in every calculation we made. 

When it comes to our ability to problem-solve to meet the wants and needs of our client, Casey Cameron of Pavilion Construction said, “In this business, things don’t always work out perfectly, but the team at Green Insight is open to finding creative solutions to figure out the most timely, cost-efficient way to resolve issues. And their ability to turn things around and keep things on track distinguishes Green Insight from competitors.”

Project Solutions

After modeling many designs and systems, we landed on the most cost-efficient ones to keep on budget. The result is a wood-framed structure with an insulation/sheathing that is a lot like what would now be known as ZIP wall. Each unit has its mini-split and on-demand electric water heaters. For the common living areas, a small PV system provides all the power whether you’re doing yoga, playing billiards, or enjoying the mountain view on the rooftop deck.

The Finished Product

The end of the project produced a LEED for Homes Platinum Certified luxury complex that qualified for a $403,871 New Mexico Sustainable Building Tax Credit, a $13,090 water rebate from the city of Albuquerque, and a PNM utility rebate of $22,623. It also qualifies for the 179D Federal Tax Credit.

If you’re ready to see how Green Insight can find the perfect solution for your sustainable living project, contact us today. You will reach one of our team members who will be happy to discuss your project and your goals while showing you how Green Insight can help you with both.