Green Building Earns Platinum Award For C-MORE Building

exterior of C-MORE Hale

The building that houses the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education was awarded LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum for energy use, lighting, water and material use. The award is the highest level of certification established by the U.S. Green Building Council and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute.

C-MORE Hale became the first research laboratory building in Hawaiʻi—and only the eighth construction project in the state—to receive the highest level of LEED certification. Group 70 International served as lead design firm.

Green design and construction features

LEED certification of C-MORE Hale was based on green design and construction features that positively impact the project and the broader community. These attributes include

  • Incorporation of ultra low-flow toilets, automated faucets and waterless urinals to reduce use of potable water by 48 percent
  • Diversion of 25,000 gallons of water from city storm drains through the implementation of an underground storm water chamber detention system
  • Establishment of a 2,400-square-foot green roof to help to reduce storm water runoff, lower building temperature, remove carbon dioxide and provide an attractive eco-habitat for insects and birds. 
  • Reduction of irrigation demand by 65 percent through landscape design that includes dry stream beds with river rocks, drought-tolerant and native plants and drip irrigation
  • Utilization of solar hot water heat recovery, contributing to reduction of the building’s energy consumption by 52.2 percent
  • Use of smart controls on primary lighting to shut off lights when rooms are unoccupied and adjust light levels according to the amount of daylight detected.

What happens at C-MORE?

exterior of C-MORE Hale

This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. Congratulations to everyone that made this LEED award happen for the Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education, but especially congratulations to the person who first came up with the idea and pushed it forward. A magnificent achievement.

    Another way to look at the question of going green is to ask yourself, “What it will cost you NOT to build green?” Is a zero to five percent premium yielding lower energy and maintenance costs over time worth it? Property owners electing to save a little bit of money now by ignoring available green options could be throwing away money for years to come, as well as decreasing the marketability and value of their property for future buyers.

  2. That’s a good point. So the question then becomes how can this option be more affordable and/or equitable? Is there financing available to make a heavy upfront investment in property improvements? Does the conventional C&C codes allow for this as well? There are probably many property owners who do not simply elect not to do LEED type improvements but who just don’t have the funds… How equitable is LEED? From what I have read since property values increase gentrification could (and often does) take place…

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