Ralston Group Properties (aka RGP) recognizes that sustainability is not an option – it is our responsibility. Our team is committed to Community, and that commitment is partially reflected in our choice to create and maintain a sustainable business practice. A business not only where trust-based relationships are built and maintained, but a business that identifies and implements ways to become better stewards of our resources.
As a certified EcoBroker and certified GREEN Broker, I believed that it was only right to design a space incorporating those principals. Below is a brief description of what we tried to achieve with our space. We hope that you’ll feel what we feel while inside. read more…
We chose the ~900 square foot space at the Veltex Building in downtown Boise for several reasons, including, but certainly not limited to:
§ The history of the building having been a “brownfield-type” site – a former gas station;
§ The quality of the building structure, and the quality of its occupants/residents;
§ The proximity of the space to St. Luke’s Hospital – 60% of RGP’s clientele includes St. Luke’s physicians;
§ The urban location, which puts us close to our core areas, and allows us to reduce our carbon footprint;
§ The high visibility of the space;
§ The manageable size of the space; and
§ The genuine simplicity and beauty of the space.
RGP’s core competencies are reflected in our commitment to sustainability, the downtown core, the green building community, and unique projects.
Consistent with our commitment to sustainability (and the green building community), we thought it was important to make our space as healthy, energy efficient, high performing, and sustainable as possible. Our approach to achieve LEED certification was to make decisions for what we believed were the right reasons, regardless if we were able to achieve points for every element.
Some specifics of our commitment to sustainability included:
§ Designing the space around existing walls to the maximum extent practicable to eliminate and/or minimize waste generated;
§ Recycling everything that we could relative to demolition waste – giving material to Habitat Restore; Second Chance; members of the Community, etc;
§ Embracing the existing concrete floors – keeping them natural adding only a water-based emulsifier;
§ Securing reclaimed/reused furniture as much as practicable, and securing environmentally friendly furniture – every chair, desk, table, etc. has some “green certification;”
§ Implementing company policies and a culture that encourages our team to recycle, reduce his/her carbon footprint, and become better stewards of our natural resources – for example, agents are monetarily incentivized to reduce the number of vehicle trips each week;
§ Purchasing only Energy-Star equipment – computers, printers, TV, breakroom appliances, etc;
§ Creating natural daylight and views for every office and limiting the number of watts required for lighting;
§ Using only environmentally friendly cleaning products;
§ Inspecting and cleaning our HVAC system and fresh air intake, and committing to a long-term maintenance contract to ensure our system is in always functioning in top condition;
§ Partnering with our contractors, our downtown university (Boise State), and a local technical college, educating each on our efforts while introducing new environmentally friendly ways for each to conduct/improve their own business; and
§ Committing to educating our clients, our neighbors, and our Community on our LEED efforts and the effects of such efforts – a healthy, environmentally responsible, more economical, and sustainable space.
We hope to share our LEED experience with you, and look forward to achieving our certification (anticipated Fall 2012).