Seattle - September 17, 2009 — The Olive 8 building, a 39-story hotel/ condominium building located in downtown Seattle, has officially received LEED Silver from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a first for hotel/condominium buildings in the Seattle area. As the first mixed-use hotel and residential project to be LEED certified in Seattle, Olive 8 has been recognized as a high-performance building that is a responsible and efficient place to live, vacation and work. The cornerstone Hyatt at Olive 8 hotel located within the Olive 8 building is now also one of only 20 hotels in the US to be officially designated “green” by the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System.
Olive 8 was planned and developed by R.C. Hedreen Company. Realizing the value of green building early on, R.C. Hedreen did a significant redesign of the original building plans to ensure Olive 8 would meet the exacting LEED certification standards.
“A few years ago, it became obvious to us that green, sustainable and environmentally-friendly design and construction is the future,” said David Thyer, R.C. Hedreen Company CEO. “All the research since then demonstrates that a green building is better for our bottom line, while also better for hotel guests and condo owners – both in terms of offering a healthier indoor environment and in terms of long-term investment value. Olive 8 is proof that a building can be both green and sophisticated.”
Featuring a sleek 100-percent glass exterior, stunning blue glass architectural elements and one of Seattle’s largest living rooftops, the building’s green design will make a lasting positive impact on the local environment. In addition to an expected energy savings of 23 percent more than a conventional building of similar size and occupancy, Olive 8 is expected to have water savings of about 36 percent, or approximately 2.4 million gallons each year. Key elements that contribute to the energy-saving and eco-friendly nature of the building include:
- Low-flow plumbing fixtures, which use one gallon per minute less than traditional showerheads.
- Dual-flush toilets that use 29 percent less water per flush.
- A low-chemical mechanical water system that uses less potable water.
- Landscaping maintenance that uses minimal city water, thanks to the use of native plant species and super-efficient irrigation systems. This system results in a 99% savings from typical irrigation programs – an approximate savings of 24,000 gallons of water per year (in addition to the 2.4 million gallons saved in the building).
- In total, more than 95 percent of construction debris was diverted from landfill disposal by redirecting materials to be reused and recycled.
The artfully designed property is home to the 346-room Hyatt at Olive 8 – located on the first 17 floors of the Olive 8 building – and 229 urban condominium homes situated on the upper 22 floors. The first LEED hotel for Hyatt Hotels Corporation, Hyatt at Olive 8 pairs world-class service with environmentally sound practices. To conserve energy, rooms are equipped with Watt Stopper technology that only allows lights to be on while guests are in the room, dual flush Toto toilets and Bricor water-reducing showerheads. The hotel strives to meet stringent eco-friendly standards through all of its guest services, including environmentally friendly cleaning practices, an all “green” meetings and events offering, in-room recycling and more. The hotel is also home to Urbane – a restaurant featuring a rotating, locally-sourced Pacific Northwest menu – and Elaia, an eco-friendly spa incorporating local ingredients in to its treatments. Both support the development’s message of sustainable luxury.
“Hyatt at Olive 8 is a model of sustainability," said Mark Stiebeling, general manager of Hyatt at Olive 8. "We’re proud of achieving LEED Silver and we hope to continue to contribute toward a greener, more eco-friendly future for the hospitality industry.”
Olive 8 is a stand-out building in other ways as well. It is the first building in Seattle to participate in King County’s Transfer of Development Rights program; in exchange for higher building rights, R.C. Hedreen paid nearly one million dollars toward the preservation of 284 acres on Sugarloaf Mountain in rural King County, as well as vital salmon habitat. This fall, the carbon footprint for Olive 8 will be reduced by 50 percent when Seattle Steam Company, which provides heating for the building, will begin using mostly biomass as fuel instead of natural gas. Olive 8 also features preferred parking spaces for highly fuel-efficient vehicles and outlets for electric cars in the underground parking lot.
The LEED Green Building Rating System was implemented to encourage the design, construction and operation of more sustainable buildings. LEED verifies environmental performance, occupant health and financial return, and was established for market leaders to design and construct buildings that protect and save precious resources while also making good economic sense. The achievement of silver LEED Silver certification demonstrates the building’s environmental leadership in the industry, both locally and nationally