Much praise has come to the real estate market here in Massachusetts for the way in which our industry has persevered through the tough economic times of late. While the real estate business is thriving given the substantial year-over-year improvements we have seen in prices, sales, and more, the past year has also been marked by a decrease in the average days on the market and lower interest rates. Now, more accolades are making headlines for the Bay State, as according to the U.S. Green Building Council, Massachusetts ranked fourth in 2013 among all States for having the most LEED-certified green buildings.
Regions around the country were surveyed that are at the forefront of this substantial movement towards more energy efficient, green buildings. With much of the Hub being defined by cranes due to the immense investment coming to our shores in areas such as the Back Bay, South End, Downtown, Financial District, Seaport District, and more, there has been a great emphasis from developers and city officials to ensure that the building designs, construction, and operations are all done with a green thumb.
Massachusetts came back with a result of 101 buildings being LEED-certified, which consisted of 13.6 million square feet of space. Virginia was in the #3 ranking just above Massachusetts with their 160 projects and 29.4 million square feet. Next was Maryland with 119 projects and 12.6 million square feet, while Illinois was #1 with 171 buildings totalling 29.4 million square feet.
Some of the notable Massachusetts projects that received LEED certification were the following, as highlighted by the Boston Business Journal:
• The Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center in Holyoke, LEED Platinum
• One Beacon Street in Boston, recertified at LEED Platinum after earning LEED Silver in 2008
• Boston University Student Services Center, LEED Gold
• The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection Wall Experiment Center in Lawrence
• The Worcester Recovery Center and Hospital, LEED Gold
• Northampton Police Department, LEED Gold
• The Lord Jeffery Inn in Amherst, LEED Silver
• USGBC Platinum Member Perkins & Will Boston Office, LEED Gold
• 150 Second Street research laboratory in Cambridge, LEED Platinum
Grey Lee, the Executive Director at the USGBC Massachusetts Chapter, commented on this in a statement by saying, “Massachusetts has a strong community of practitioners working to make green buildings a reality. We have good leadership and policy initiatives for higher-performing structures and sustainability at the community level.”
In 2012, Massachusetts also came in at the #4 ranking. However, this survey was only first enacted in 2010, when Massachusetts at that time did not even crack the Top 10 State’s nationwide. In 2011, the Bay State made it into the upper rankings, coming in at the #7 position.
2013 saw Massachusetts certify 101 projects representing 13.7 million square feet, roughly 2.09 square feet per resident. Worldwide, there are more than 20,000 projects representing about 2.9 billion square feet that are LEED-certified. What is even more impressive is that there are 37,000 pending buildings with 7.6 billion square feet currently awaiting LEED-certification. With Massachusetts clearly on an upward trend for implementing a green mentality for our buildings and overall way of life, the future is brighter than ever and is one that will be defined by sustainability and progress.
More Information: Boston Business Journal