Monday, October 26, 2009

Alaskan Way Viaduct Collapse Simulation

A potential collapse of the Viaduct and Seawall is depicted in the below WSDOT video. Originally, WSDOT deemed this simulation 'unnecessarily frightening' and opted to withhold it from public release. A public disclosure request made last month has brought the video onto WSDOT's YouTube channel, and other media sources.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Stadium Auto Center - Seattle's Green Auto Row

We hired a photographer to snap some aerial shots of our Stadium Auto Center site - below is one of the photos with the site outlined in blue. The idea behind Stadium Auto Center is to embrace the green car movement while leveraging BMW of Seattle's new $40,000,000 investment to the East. Given the site's exposure, proximity to the city, and easy access to all major modes of transportation, we are receiving an incredible amount of interest from the automotive industry. Expect some exciting announcements in the future as this concept evolves. For more information, please feel free to contact us direct at (206) 262-2880.

From Urban Visions Projects

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A Look at Urban Rooftop Farming

A very cool look at Urban Rooftop Farming - in this example, underutilized rooftop space becomes home to local organic farmers who then deliver the produce via bicycles to nearby restaurants. Many possibilities with this concept, especially in Seattle with the glut of industrial rooftops the city looks over to the South.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Financial Benefits of LEED (Part 1)

A recent study conducted by national real estate research firm, Costar, re-examines the financial benefits of going green. By utilizing a powerhouse of national data, they are able to analyze several relationships between the real estate market and green buildings. Specifically, they look at Energy Star and LEED certified structures.

The findings are not necessarily surprising from a qualitative standpoint - most people have recognized, by now, that green buildings provide value. They do introduce some new data into this study however by quantifying several relationships.

We are going to outline some of the more interesting data most recently available in a two part post. Part 1 is below:

Occupancy Rates of Energy Star Properties vs. Energy Star peers

-2005 1q: Energy Star = 86.2% ; Peers = 85.9% (difference of 0.30%)

-2007 1q: Energy Star = 90.20%; Peers = 88.40% (difference of 1.80%)

-2009 1q: Energy Star = 89.40% ; Peers = 86.9% (difference of 2.50%)


Direct Rental Rates of Energy Star Properties vs. Energy Star peers

-2005 1q: Energy Star = $26.16 ; peers = $23.84 (difference of $2.32)

-2007 1q: Energy Star = $28.65 ; peers = $24.85 (difference of $3.80)

-2009 1q: Energy Star = $30.71 ; peers = $25.97 (difference of $4.73)


Occupancy Rates of LEED properties vs. LEED peers

-2005 1q: LEED = 94.6% ; peers = 86.41% (difference of 8.2%)

-2007 1q: LEED = 89.20% ; peers = 87.59% (difference of 1.6%)

-2009 1q: LEED = 90.03% ; peers = 84.66% (difference of 5.4%)


Direct Rental Rates of LEED properties vs. LEED peers

-2005 1q: LEED = $30.57 ; peers = $27.37 (difference of $3.21)

-2007 1q: LEED = $45.65 ; peers = $28.82 (difference of $16.84)

-2009 1q: LEED = $38.86 ; peers = $29.80 (difference of $9.06)


*Costar’s study reports have been confirmed by multiple studies with similar results.



Top 10 Metropolitan Areas for Green Buildings


1) Los Angeles (100 buildings; 26,167,038 SF; 13.3%)

2) Houston (46 buildings; 21,101,378 SF; 10.8%)

3) Washington DC (61 buildings; 19,796,646 SF; 10.1%)

4) New York City (11 buildings; 12,328,784 SF; 6.3%)

5) San Francisco (30 buildings; 11,862,367 SF; 6.0%)

6) Minneapolis/St. Paul (20 buildings; 11,381,738 SF; 5.8%)

7) Denver (34 buildings; 10,285,745 SF; 5.2%)

8) Seattle/Puget Sound (16 buildings; 7,616,710 SF; 3.9%)

9) Chicago (13 buildings; 6,326,489 SF; 3.2%)

10) Dallas/Ft Worth (20 buildings; 6,058,892 SF; 3.1%)