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Green Building Certification: Good for Developers and Tenants

By Green Coast on 2 Aug 2017

The historic renovation of the G.O. Mondy School
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The historic renovation of the G.O. Mondy School

Green Building Standards

After working with GCE Services, developer Jamie Neville is now a firm believer in Enterprise Green Communities standards. Neville’s company, Neville Development, recently completed the historic rehabilitation of the former G.O. Mondy Elementary School on the corner of St. Philip and North Tonti streets. The project, which includes historic renovation and new construction, will provide 35 apartments for seniors.

“We applied for low-income housing tax credits, and developers compete for a limited amount of credits based on a scoring criteria, so the higher your score the better,” says Neville. “You can check off the box for agreeing to use Enterprise Green Communities standards, which we did not only for the points, but also because the green building standards benefit tenants and it’s the environmentally responsible thing to do.•

Neville used GCE Services’ third party verification system to ensure the project hit the standards. Green Certifications Manager Sarah Burger and Director of Construction Management Stephanie Mezynski started meeting with the architect and contractor during the design phase so the standards were incorporated into the plans, and then monitored it during construction.

“There were some hills to climb because this is a historic renovation,” Mezynski says. “But when you have the cooperation of the architect and contractor, you can quickly and efficiently get it done.”

GCE Services provides third party verification for green building certification in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Energy Star, and National Green Building Standard (NGBS) in addition to Enterprise Green Communities standards. Mezynski and Burger, who is the only NGBS certifier in the New Orleans area, have worked with developers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, and, as Green Coast COO Jackie Dadakis puts it, the firm can make it a seamless process.

“We’ve done many of these types of projects,• says Dadakis. “The team can assist with the application for low-income tax credits, and then move into design phase, monitoring and the final test out and certification. We’re there throughout the process, working with the contractor and the architect.•

Neville says Burger and Mezynski did a great job in exposing any potential problems that would drive up energy costs for tenants, and he was impressed with their approach.

GCE worked directly with the general contractor, so it didn’t require having to contact me too much,• Neville says. “As a developer, I appreciate that kind of confidence and independence.”

Categories: Building Green

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