International real estate firm Hines is on a high, literally and figuratively, after the redesign of its Galleria-area office has earned a coveted platinum certification under the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED system for commercial interior ratings.
The 49th and 50th floor offices of the iconic Williams Tower were transformed by Kirksey Architecture from the original design, created more than 30 years ago by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. Focus of the new design is a two-story lobby offering grand vistas of the city skyline where 12 of Hines' 17 downtown projects are visible.
The focus of the new design is a two-story lobby offering grand vistas of the city skyline.
A key element in earning the top LEED certification is the adaptive re-use of existing materials. The figures are convincing: 42 percent of materials and 62 percent of furnishings were salvaged, 750 cubic yards of construction waste material was recycled and the majority of the English Oak paneling that once defined the space was reused, refreshed and slightly modified to allow natural light into the floors.
“We are tremendously proud of this achievement and we recognize the importance of leading by example and demonstrating our commitment to the environment,” Hines senior vice president, corporate operations services Ilene Allen said in a statement. “Achieving LEED-CI Platinum is the result of more than 18 months of preparing, planning, and execution by our architects, contractors and employees."
Hines is setting the example for other tenants in the 64-story, 1.5 million-square-foot office building that the firm developed and opened in 1982.