In good news for both New York City‘s jobs outlook and its green building ambitions, Jet Blue, “New York’s Official Hometown Airline,” selected Long Island City, Queens, for its new corporate support headquarters back in 2010. That building, which has taken LEED Silver for Existing Buildings, recently celebrated its grand opening, with Mayor Michael Bloomberg, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and other officials joining JetBlue’s President and CEO Dave Barger in a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
“Since our start up in New York in 1998 and our first flight from JFK in 2000, JetBlue’s home, heart and soul have always remained in New York,” Barger said in a statement. “Now in our second decade, we are growing jobs with this new office, serving seven Empire State destinations with more daily seats between New York City and upstate than any other airline, and growing the regional economy with competitive fares.”
Mayor Bloomberg highlighted Jet Blue’s key role in making New York City the nation’s No. 1 travel destination, and praised the airline’s decision to remain headquartered in New York as a “major vote of confidence” in the city as a place to grow and do business. The project serves to consolidate two existing area administrative offices for Jet Blue while adding 70 jobs to the local economy.
Green features of the building include natural daylighting, occupancy sensors, Energy-Star-certified appliances, a high-efficiency HVAC system (tied to a central monitoring system), and furniture and carpet composed of locally sourced/recycled/eco-friendly materials. During construction, 90 percent of all construction wastes were recycled, and the building currently makes use of a eco-friendly cleaning products regimen to preserve indoor air quality for staff members and visitors.
Jet Blue’s headquarters building offers recycling for office products (paper, toner, etc), bike racks, and easy access to New York’s subway system and commuter railroads, making it possible for 77 percent of those who work at the office to commute via public transportation. More on the building is available online.