LEED Platinum Point Champ: Atlanta’s Perkins+Will

It seems fitting that one of the world’s top design firms—serving clients ranging from the Beirut International Airport to Panama City, Panama—should have a world-class headquarters building, and that appears to be what Perkins+Will has achieved at 1315 Peachtree Street in Atlanta.

The firm’s redo of its headquarters building has been awarded LEED Platinum with a score of 95, “the most of any project in the Northern Hemisphere to date under the 2009 version of LEED for New Construction,” the company said. No wonder Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), called it “a showpiece.”

Perkins+Will LEED to point getter

image via Perkins+Will

As with most high-scoring LEED projects, increased energy efficiency was a guiding factor in the building’s design, but in this case, so was increased quality of life, productivity and creativity for its employees. The retrofit includes an exterior terrace that serves as a lunch, meeting and office social space, while offering employees a garden where they can get in touch with the real green stuff, hands on. Inside, employees enjoy “the latest in workplace design,” with workspaces, common areas and multipurpose rooms designed to encourage collaboration that can be easily reconfigured, based on input from staff.

Eco-features include energy-efficient exterior glazing and alterations to the front facade, as well as passive sun shading on lower levels and an active, dynamic exterior sunshade on the building terrace level designed to control afternoon sunlight and heat gain. The building incorporates views and natural daylight in virtually every occupied space, adding to the quality of life for employees while cutting energy bills. Another energy efficiency factor: reduced ambient lighting coupled with the use of LED bulbs.

The building also incorporates raised flooring and a radiant heating and cooling system, the first of its kind in Atlanta.

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.