By D.C. Stribling, Contributing Editor
Symphony Honolulu has become the first new 400-foot tall high-rise residential condominium building to achieve LEED Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Developed by OliverMcMillan, the property includes 388 residential units at the corner of Ward Ave. and Kapiolani Blvd. in the city’s Kaka’ako district.
All new construction projects in Kaka’ako are required to meet minimum energy savings standards equivalent to LEED-based certification level, per the Hawaii Community Development Authority (HCDA)’s 2011 Mauka Area rules. Kakaʻako is part of Honolulu, located along the southern shores of the island of Oahu near downtown.
Symphony Honolulu’s Green Features
Symphony Honolulu, completed in 2016, incorporates water-efficient fixtures and systems reducing potable water use by 35 percent, enhanced building envelope and mechanical systems allowing for annual energy cost savings of 13 percent, and a 161 kW photovoltaic energy system. Construction waste diversion practices achieved diversion of 91 percent of the on-site generated construction waste from landfills.
OliverMcMillan reports that 85 percent of the property’s original buyers were from Oahu and that 100 Reserved Housing residences were delivered to many first-time homebuyers (Reserved Housing is an aspect of local affordable housing policy).
Thus far, with the completion of Pacifica Honolulu and Symphony Honolulu, OliverMcMillan has provided 224 for-sale Reserved Housing units in Kaka’ako, representing 36 percent of the total 617 completed for-sale reserved units built since HCDA started its for-sale Reserved Housing inclusionary housing program in 1987.
The LEED Certification process was managed by Chelsea Group, Ltd. “OliverMcMillan, AHL [formerly known as Architects Hawaii Ltd.], Notkin Hawaii and General Contractor Nordic PCL embraced a sustainability program within the design and construction of Symphony Honolulu,” said George Benda, CEO of Chelsea Group.