In the last several months, the world has welcomed several LEED-certified projects representing firsts for the program. Here’s a closer look at five of the most recent.

Schindler Elevator Corp., Hanover, Pa.
Schindler Elevator Corp.’s Hanover, Pa., facility recently received North America’s first LEED Gold certification for an elevator manufacturing plant. According this press release and infographic, the 150,000-square-foot facility is designed to provide support for the North American market, producing customer-facing components such as doors, entrances, and cab interiors. Green features include a 665-kilowatt photovoltaic array that generates half of the building’s total annual power consumption; electric car charging stations for employees and visitors; and a zero-discharge water system. The design team included James E. Baumgardner Architects, Hanover, Pa.; Conewago Enterprises, Hanover, Pa.; Group Hanover Incorporated, Hanover, Pa.; and Paragon, York, Pa. Find out more about the building design in this video.

SwedishAmerican Regional Cancer Center, Rockford, Ill. Opened in October 2013, the SwedishAmerican Regional Cancer Center recently became the nation's first cancer center to receive LEED for Healthcare (LEED-HC) certification. According to a press release, the facility was built in collaboration with the University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, and the design team included Saavedra Gehlhausen Architects, Eckenhoff Saunders Architects and Ringland-Johnson Construction.  Some of the unique sustainable features include maximized daylighting, efficient water systems, and sustainably sourced materials. Nearly 80 percent of the construction was from the project was diverted from landfills.

JW Marriott Dongdaemun Square, Seoul, South Korea.
 In February, JW Marriott Hotels & Resorts celebrated the opening of the JW Marriott Dongdaemun Square Seoul. According to Hospitality.Net, this is the company’s second Seoul, South Korea property, and the first in the city to receive LEED Gold certification. “The sustainable design philosophy for this project was to design the building as a city-center jewel, incorporating eco-practices without sacrificing an unsurpassed, luxury experience for guests. With this in mind, the designers were able to find eco-friendly materials that did not hinder the design vision so that sustainable touch points were incorporated throughout the hotel,” said Emmie Kunhardt, a representative for the JW Marriott brand.

“Great care was taken in selecting each of the items used for this project, down to the glue, solvents, and finishing materials, to offer an all-encompassing eco-friendly hotel experience. For example, an air purifying system was chosen that is normally used in hospital operating rooms as it circulates fresh, clean air effectively throughout the entire hotel to make the purification process more effective and efficient.”

Two of the notable green features are a greywater system and LED lighting.The design team included the Marriott Architect & Construction Department, Kunwon+poly.m.ur (façade design), Wilson Associates (interior design), and GS Engineering & Construction Corporation.

Rising Realty Partners PacMutual Campus, Los Angeles. Located in downtown Los Angeles, Rising Realty Partners’ PacMutual Campus building has received Platinum LEED-EB certification. According to a press release, it is the oldest building in Southern California to do so. The developer also says it is the city's only historic building to achieve Platinum status. Originally constructed in 1908 with additions in 1921 and 1926, RRP purchased the property in 2012. Today, the project is a 460,000-square-foot campus of three interconnected buildings: Sentry Building (1921), Clock Building (1908), and Carriage House (1926). PacMutual is a recognized local landmark and was designated as a City of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument No. 398 in 1982.

The building offsets 100 percent of the energy it consumes through renewable energy credits, while indoor water use is reduced 32 percent compared to a national baseline. Centrally located to public transportation, 63 percent of building tenants travel to work using an alternative form of transportation. The design team offset 100 percent of the land used by the building via natural habitat protection offsite through a land conservation program.

Vepica Headquarters, Caracas, Venezuela. Vepica, a global energy-industry engineering leader, recently announced that its new 82,000-square-foot, five-story headquarters was awarded LEED Silver certification, making it the first LEED-certified building in Venezuela. The building also features the largest solar-panel installation in Venezuela. According to this press release, “Key features of the headquarters’ LEED certification include: 195 solar panels totaling 50 kWh of installed capacity; enhanced energy performance; public-transportation access; 80 percent water-use reduction; innovative wastewater technologies, such as a rainwater collection tank; building and material reuse; and advanced construction waste management.”