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GREEN SCENE: No More Fear Factor

New York
GREEN SCENE: No More Fear Factor
Plaza Construction project executive Chris Mills
Seven years ago, one in every 15 jobs had a green component, but that has changed to every single project, says Plaza Construction Corp. project executive Christopher Mills. Commercial and residential owners had been cost conscious, but construction prices have gone down dramatically and the market demands that buildings go green. Plaza Construction has 10 active projects right now, including two LEED Platinum (certifications that are no longer a stretch). As few as three years ago, green was at a premium, with artificial pricing being driven by an overheated construction market, Chris tells us. But the elimination of work has subcontractors tightening their pricing, removing the fear factor of going green.

Site 23/24 in Battery Park City, Manhattan
Above, Site 23/24 in Battery Park City will be LEED Gold, as is Site 16/17 (which we dub the Sound of Music Building), another Plaza project. Additionally, the firm's working on the LEED Gold Eleven Times Square, and the LEED Platinum restacking of a major financial firm's offices on Park Avenue. What's the next evolution of green? Using building information modeling and integrated project delivery to collaborate and make projects more efficient, Chris says. If owners are cutting dimes, he notes that green components are the first to go—but BIM and IPD bring down costs, making more funds available for green building. Plaza Construction is expanding its BIM group, and Chris expects it to soon become more commonplace.