5th Annual Sustainable Innovation Awards

Green Gala Photos can be accessed in this dropbox

IMG_1651IMG_1851IMG_1961 IMG_1779

At the 11th Annual Green Gala, the Los Angeles Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC-LA) presented its 5th Annual Sustainable Innovation Awards across thirteen categories (listed below), with the Project of the Year awarded to the LEED Platinum Pico Branch Library in Santa Monica, CA. L.A.’s “Oscars” of green building, the awards reflect the Chapter’s emphasis on energy and water savings, air quality, good design, and community engagement.





In addition to Project of the Year, the Pico Branch Library also earned the Water Efficiency Honor and the Innovation in Design Honor. Designed to demonstrate the City of Santa Monica’s commitment to conserving and improving the quality of its water, the Library’s roof collects, filters and reuses rainwater for toilet and urinal flushing. These strategies conserve potable water, and also relieve the single biggest source of pollution to the Santa Monica Bay.


Awards co-chair Patti Harburg-Petrich, Senior Associate of Structures at Walter P. Moore & Associates, stated, “In our time of drought and going forward, such water measures are an exceptional model. But to make this happen, the extensive cooperation between the City and design team stood out on this project by going beyond the political hurdle associated with greywater reuse implementation. Kudos to all involved!”


The awards also featured a new category, the Health & Wellness Merit, which was presented to the MLK Ancillary Building, part of a 42-acre campus for the MLK Outpatient Center master plan in East Los Angeles. The project is for the traditionally underserved community, and includes local job creation (during and after construction) and academic opportunities, economic development, and key community empowerment working with a local artist on the site’s artwork. The LEED Gold (Healthcare) project’s large cafeteria and healing garden provide large, naturally-lit public gathering spaces. The Health & Wellness category reflects a broadening understanding of how a positive environment including access to light and nature affect work productivity, as well as mental and physical health.


“This has been a great year for extending sustainability throughout the City and region with green building projects that truly affect everyone, personally and professionally,” stated Awards co-chair Robyn Eason, Group Manager, Certification, for GBCI. “From schools to the convention center, from a parking structure and government office to libraries, this year’s projects are some of the strongest to reflect the highest levels of our judging criteria of innovation, community impact and team collaboration.”


All the awarded projects go above and beyond standard practices and use innovative strategies that can be used as a model for future sustainable design and construction. Some highlighted features of the projects include construction & demo waste diversion, integrative process of systems that improved occupant experience, under-floor air distribution, conscientious historic building renovation, dynamic aesthetic of building skin that helps enliven the streetscape, and extensive post-occupancy evaluation.


The awards honor premier projects that have already been envisioned, designed and/or built, recognizing exceptional achievement and innovation in each Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) category for countywide certified projects from the past four years. The submissions attract project teams throughout Los Angeles County’s sustainable community and are awarded regardless of LEED certification achieved.


“We received submissions of great breadth and depth, along with quite an uptick in the number of submissions,” noted USGBC-LA Executive Director Dominique Hargreaves. “This correlates with a recent USGBC study that found green building is outpacing overall construction growth in the U.S., with California as one of the strongest U.S. markets of green building and LEED certification, as well as resulting economic impact.”


The Awards were presented during the Green Gala at Los Angeles’ historic Union Station in front of a guest list of over 500 top industry professionals from local government, real estate owners and developers, architects, engineers, contractors, and LEED professionals. USGBC-LA works with anyone who is interested and engaged in collaborative sustainable initiatives.


In addition to the Awards, the Green Gala officially kicked off the one-year countdown to Los Angeles hosting the biggest annual green building event in the world, the Greenbuild International Conference & Expo (October 2016). Attracting over 30,000 global attendees, Greenbuild offers the hosting city a premier opportunity to showcase model projects across its region through tours and other related events.



The 5th Annual Sustainable Innovation Awards list:


Project of the Year                                     Pico Branch Library

Green Apple Day Project of the Year         City Language Immersion Charter

Green Apple Day Partner of the Year         LINC Cares After School Program

Energy & Atmosphere Merit         Pomona College Millikan Laboratory & Andrew Science Hall

Energy & Atmosphere Merit         Pierce College Library Learning Crossroads

Materials & Resources Merit         Los Angeles Convention Center

Indoor Environmental Quality Merit         BuroHappold Engineering

Innovation in Design Merit         City of Santa Monica Parking Structure 6

Innovation in Design Merit         Department of Veterans Affairs West Los Angeles Medical Center B209

Health & Wellness Merit         MLK Ancillary Building

Water Efficiency Honor         Pico Branch Library

Energy & Atmosphere Honor         Arbor Green

Innovation in Design Honor         Pico Branch Library