Going green appears to be the way of the future and I think Sacramento
development is now starting to move in that direction. I listed a few projects
below that I know about but I would like to hear about others that have
happen or are happening too. This subject is something I don’t know all that
much about so hopefully there is enough interest out there to make this
Green Building Features
In December 1999, California Construction Link magazine awarded the new
Cal/EPA building "Best of 1999 Awards--Outstanding Engineering." The award
was for "innovation in air handling, window placement, and recycling,
resulting in a 25-story office tower with significant energy savings over
California’s stringent energy codes." Cal/EPA's home includes many
environmentally sensitive features.
Building design that maximizes daylight penetration through the optimal
placement of windows, and by minimizing the number of hard wall offices
close to the windows.
Dual pane "Low E" exterior glass for energy conservation.
Super high efficiency/low mercury lighting tubes, and perimeter light sensors
that automatically dim the lights when the sun shines in brightly.
Solar energy generation of up to 55,180 KWH by the 736 photovoltaic panels
mounted on the low rise roof.
Each floor has at least two mechanical rooms, which also function as "fan
rooms" that serve only that floor, and can flush that floor with outside air,
Use of environmentally sensitive and resource efficient materials throughout.
Provision of 25 electric vehicle charging stations on the roof of the cty's Lot I
parking garage (Cal/EPA is also pursuing solar panels for electrical generation
in connection with these stations).
Siting for the future placement of a 250 KW natural gas powered fuel cell.
Use of zero-VOC (volatile organic compound) paints throughout the interior.
Use of 52 percent recycled-content carpet tiles, with a "sticky-back" feature
that does not require wet glue, and therefore significantly reduces the
introduction of VOCs into the work place.
Special design of the dock area recycling center and recycling collection
points on each floor to maximize recycling activities.
Natomas Corporate Center - Gateway Tower
12 story office tower in South Natomas which will be LEED-certified with
designed features to conserve energy and water and also demands the use
of recycled and local materials.
There are many cool infill projects going up in the grid and this is one of
them. Not long ago I got to go on a tour of the 9onF townhouse project
located on the 1400 block of F Street and walked away impressed. 9onF has
nine eco-friendly homes squeezed onto what had once been vacant lot for
decades. From the street there are two Victorian and contemporary styled
homes and then behind them are seven more townhouses that fit snug into
the court yard and alley.
In these times where going green is a BIG plus, this new community fits the
bill. All the units are certified LEED-H from silver to gold. The project even
has a geothermal heating and cooling water system which is the ability to
heat and cool your home with the earth's groundwater. There are also a
number of other green features in this project like non-toxic products,
eco-friendly resources and many other energy saving features.
The location is also great, 9onF is only a few blocks from lots of restaurants
on the 16th Street and J Street corridors. With so many other big projects
getting the spot light in the midtown area, I thought this project was unique
in it's green ways and also needed to be featured. I hope to see more
eco-friendly green projects like this. http://www.9onf.com/green.php
Meridian II office tower project
It will be the first privately funded and privately occupied "green" office
building in Sacramento. They're aiming for silver certification under
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards, a system
that awards points for energy- and water-saving features.
'Green' energy firms get tips on how to help industry grow
By Clint Swett of The Sacramento Bee
Friday, October 12, 2007
While the Sacramento region has many basic ingredients to become a hub for the "green" energy movement, success will depend upon expanding access to investment capital, streamlining government regulations and mustering broad government support, industry veterans told attendees at a Davis conference Thursday.
A procession of speakers at the Sacramento Region Clean Energy Showcase on the UC Davis campus praised the region's exuberant entrepreneurs and their collaboration with researchers at local universities. It's estimated that roughly 80 regional companies are now focusing on clean energy products.
The public, increasingly aware of global warming issues, is ready to embrace and pay for solutions to environmental problems, experts told 300 attendees. Now it's up to local governments and businesses to adopt the technology fostered in the area, said Ben Finkelor, program manager of the UC Davis Energy Efficiency Center, which focuses on bringing energy technologies to the marketplace.
Still, there is some progress along those lines. Rocklin, Loomis and Roseville have adopted resolutions committing their city governments to increasing the use of green energy products.
Local venture capital firms have made significant investments in the region's green technology companies. Folsom-based Velocity Venture Capital, for instance, has partnered in funding three local companies to the tune of $7 million in the past year, said Jack Crawford Jr., a general partner in the investment firm.
"It takes a lot of money for research and development and a lot more for demonstration projects and implementation," said Dennis Schuetzle, president of the Renewable Energy Institute International in Roseville.
"We trail the Bay Area in how much funding is available," said Jacob Jorgensen, a Velocity Ventures partner, who estimated that Sacramento VCs have only about 5 percent of the capital that their Bay Area brethren receive. "Success begets success. You have to start small and work toward building companies here."
Even as entrepreneurs chase capital, they must also attempt to persuade regulators to give new ideas a try. In the building industry particularly, business owners say, the rules have not kept up with advances in green tech construction.
"Anytime we do anything new in the construction process, it's a challenge," said Jim Bayless, president of Roseville-based Treasure Homes, which specializes in building solar-equipped homes. "Regulatory bodies and inspectors tend to be resistant to change."
Tom Tenge, a sales executive with office developer Business Central, estimated that his new project in El Dorado Hills will take a month longer to get approval than it normally would because of energy-saving features.
"Anytime you are outside the box, it takes more time," he said. "And we're always outside the box."
Tenge also noted that lenders are often reluctant to finance the extra costs that a green project might entail. In his latest project, for instance, he said some modest energy-saving features will add about $1 million to the $18 million price tag.
"While (lenders) say they are thinking about green, this is the green they are really thinking about," he said, holding up a dollar bill.
Still, the speakers said the region enjoys some significant advantages in its efforts to become Green Acres to the Bay Area's Silicon Valley:
• The University of California, Davis, and California State University, Sacramento, provide significant intellectual and research horsepower.
• As the state capital, Sacramento is at the center of major policy initiatives to combat global warming.
• Green tech encompasses a broad variety of industries, ranging from agriculture to construction to computer technology -- all areas well-represented in the region.
• And finally, there is little hope that the price of traditional energy sources, such as fossil fuel, will decline significantly, meaning alternative energy has a bright future.