The Aviat Networks headquarters building in Santa Clara, Calif., has received LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is an internationally recognized green building certification system developed by USGBC.
The Santa Clara building was designed with environmental responsibility in mind; following the five LEED credit categories for construction, décor and location:
1. Site selection
Located close to Light Rail & Capitol Corridor Amtrak train service, the site is prime for reducing car-based commuting. Also, indoor secure bicycle storage, showers and changing rooms have been provided to promote cycling, which will can further reduce car-based commuting.
2. Water efficiency
Aviat Networks installed water efficient fixtures that reduce water use by 40 percent compared to standard fixtures.
3. Energy and atmosphere
We reduced heat island effect by installing cool roofing that has the ability to reflect visible, infrared and ultraviolet light, decreasing heat transfer to the building (i.e., high solar reflectance rating). Our advanced heating and cooling system has variable speed fans monitored by computer. We selected Energy Star rated equipment for the majority of office equipment and appliances. And all the building’s electricity comes from “green” energy sources (i.e., wind power).
4. Materials and resources
During construction, waste was managed so that more than 95 percent of it was diverted from landfills through recycling and salvage efforts. Flooring is based on fast-growing renewable bamboo instead of non-renewable sources and the carpet is made from recycled content such as plastic bottles. Paints and coatings with low emission rates of volatile organic compounds and other air pollutants were used. And carpentry with composite wood products in doors and millwork was installed—saving some trees in the process.
5. Indoor environment
Low E glass windows and interior office-core windows can be left uncovered to allow for maximum natural lighting in the office area. Cube panels are lower and have windows to take advantage of the natural light. We also have a fitness center to promote employee health and wellness. Though this last category did not actually contribute official USGBC green credits to Aviat Networks’ LEED Gold certification, it demonstrates the company’s commitment to this process and contributes to overall employee well-being.
What’s the difference?
Do LEED buildings cost more? The answer is no. It is a design strategy that creates a building that will save energy and money over the long-term. It will also have limited effect on the environment and enhance working conditions.