CHICAGO, March 14, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Society of Environmentally Responsible Facilities (SERF) today announced its launch into the Chicago market. The East Lansing, Mich.-based green building certification organization brings affordable, streamlined and accessible environmental certification to the metro's building owners, managers and developers.
As part of SERF's Chicago launch, it is certifying two Chicago buildings: the office portion of the iconic 330 North Wabash building and Norcon Construction headquarters. Additionally, the organization established a Chicago office and appointed a regional director to oversee operations and outreach efforts for the region.
"Expanding to this city is a natural extension of our Midwest roots and allows us to spread SERF's mission to an innovative and thriving metropolitan area," said Joseph Maguire, MS, SFP, president and co-founder of SERF. "Chicago's commercial real estate community has a long-standing commitment to sustainability and we're proud to reinforce that initiative through certifying these important structures."
A historic Chicago landmark, 330 North Wabash is a 52-story, Class A tower, of which 49 floors are office and mechanical floors, yielding approximately 1.1 million square feet of office space. The property, designed by renowned architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, is located on the Chicago River and boasts sustainable elements that include a comprehensive recycling program, energy-efficient lighting and a green roof allowing for more efficient heating and cooling throughout the building.
Attaining SERF certification complements 330 North Wabash's other sustainability accolades, including the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) LEED-EB O&M Silver certification, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's ENERGY STAR certification and BOMA 360 Performance Program designation.
"We've always had a passion and dedication for integrating green practices into the building's structure and culture," said Susan Hammer, general manager of 330 North Wabash. "We're proud to be one of the first Chicago properties to receive SERF certification and will continue to support green initiatives at this property and throughout the Chicago building community."
Additionally, the Norcon Construction headquarters, located in Chicago's River West neighborhood, is pursuing SERF certification. The property, which is certified LEED Gold and ENERGY STAR, features sustainable raw materials, new windows that allow for natural lighting, a green roof and high-efficiency heating and cooling systems, among other sustainable attributes.
"Norcon Construction utilized an adaptive reuse of an old warehouse for their office headquarters," said Maguire. "Together, with the landmark 330 North Wabash building, these properties emphasize the versatility and flexibility of SERF certification."
In tandem with the local building certifications, SERF also opened a Chicago office at 200 South Wacker Drive and established a Chicago sales team with the addition of Jenni James, regional manager. In her role, James will be responsible for increasing SERF's outreach capabilities in the Chicago and Phoenix regions. Through her studies and professional experience in architecture and landscape architecture, James brings industry expertise to the company's emerging regions.
Prior to joining SERF, James was a designer and project coordinator with Logan Simpson Design in Phoenix where she specialized in sustainable landscape design. James holds a bachelor's degree in landscape architecture and architecture from Arizona State University.
The Society of Environmentally Responsible Facilities (SERF) is a coalition of property owners, business managers and green industry experts certifying green buildings and promoting Practical Environmental Stewardship™. Founded in 2010, SERF provides a viable independent environmental certification option as an alternative to the industry standard. Since its inception, SERF has certified buildings in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Pennsylvania and Texas. For more information about SERF, please visit SERFgreen.org or connect with SERF on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
SOURCE Society of Environmentally Responsible Facilities