(HOUSTON) – Hines, the international real estate firm, announced today that 717 Texas has been certified at the Platinum level under the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED Volume Certification (LEED VC) Program.
In 2014, Hines rolled out the LEED VC Program, which was created in partnership with the USGBC with the goals of identifying the uniformity and similarities across the buildings that exist in Hines’ LEED EB efforts to date; capitalizing on these similarities to create a streamlined approach to obtaining LEED certification for the firm’s properties; and providing managers with guidance and tools that have been created for Hines personnel, by Hines personnel. The Hines LEED VC program allows properties key benefits while pursuing certification and recertification. To date, 33 properties to date have participated in the LEED VC Program, 22 of which have completed and received certifications.
Completed in 2003, 717 Texas is a 33-story, 696,421-square-foot office tower located in Houston's downtown theater district. Designed by HOK, the granite-clad Class A office tower features some of the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly office space in Houston.
In 2009, 717 Texas achieved LEED Silver and became the first commercial office building in Houston’s CBD to receive LEED certification from the USGBC. In 2011, 717 Texas improved their certification from Silver to Platinum and was the only skyscraper in the state of Texas to achieve the USGBC’s highest green building designation. In addition to LEED, 717 Texas has earned the ENERGY STAR label nine times. With a current ENERGY STAR score of 84, the building is 35 percent more energy efficient when compared to the average U.S. office building.
Sustainability features at the property include: increased waste diversion rates; reductions in potable water use inside the building and zero potable water use for exterior landscaping; improvements in green cleaning products and practices; a vegetated green sky garden terrace; highly efficient air ventilation and filtration systems; variable speed drives; and a condensate recovery system.
Hines Senior Managing Director John Mooz said, “When design was initiated in 2000, we made the decision to incorporate as many sustainable features as commercially possible. The quality of the tenancy and its high retention rate confirm that our strategy was indeed sound.”
Global Sustainability Officer Gary Holtzer added, “We are excited about this program and feel strongly that it creates significant value for the firm, and specifically for those properties that continually strive to make Hines a leader in sustainability.”
Hines is one of the most sustainable real estate companies in the world. In 2015 Hines was recognized by the EPA, for the eighth time, with the ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award. In addition, Hines has received the ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award three times. Hines manages 181 labeled buildings, representing more than 81 million square feet, in the ENERGY STAR program. Also, 12 Hines development or redevelopment projects, representing more than six million square feet, have been designated as Designed to Earn the ENERGY STAR.
Hines is also a leader in the U.S. Green Building Council’s programs, with 200 projects, representing more than 105 million square feet that have been certified, pre-certified or registered under the various LEED rating systems. Hines was a founding member of the German Sustainable Building Council and the Russian Green Building Council, and is active in the Green Building Council Brasil, the Green Building Council España, the Green Building Council Italia, the Indian Green Building Council, the BRE Environmental Assessment Method program in the United Kingdom and the Haute Qualité Environnementale program in France.
Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment firm founded in 1957 with a presence in 199 cities in 19 countries. Hines has $87 billion of assets under management, including $43 billion for which Hines provides fiduciary investment management services, and $44 billion for which Hines provides third-party property-level services. The firm has 104 developments currently underway around the world. Historically, Hines has developed, redeveloped or acquired 1,100 properties, totaling over 346 million square feet. The firm’s current property and asset management portfolio includes 531 properties, representing over 186 million square feet. With extensive experience in investments across the risk spectrum and all property types, and a pioneering commitment to sustainability, Hines is one of the largest and most-respected real estate organizations in the world. Visit www.hines.com for more information.