RTKL has completed participation in a year-long working committee known as the Hospitality Adaptations Working Group, facilitated by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) that was charged with developing sustainable design guidelines for hospitality facilities.
RTKL principle Laura Galbreath AIA, LEED AP, was the sole architect to serve on the committee, and is optimistic that new guidelines will encourage more hotel developers and operators to ramp up sustainability goals to USGBC standards.
"While most clients are interested in sustainable design, many have been less apt to seek LEED certification for the very reason that the cyclical and variable nature of their business wasn’t addressed by the standard guidelines,” says Galbreath, a 13-year veteran of the industry. “With new specifications that take into account meeting spaces, spa and pool facilities, and varying hours of operation, the hospitality industry now has a defined model for implementing sustainable design and practices.”
The committee assessment produced guidelines that address a wide variety of considerations unique to the hospitality industry.
“In the United States alone, hotels represent more than five billion square-feet of space, nearly five million guest rooms, and close to $4 billion in annual energy use,” says Corey Enck, director, U.S. Green Building Council. “The Hospitality Adaptations Working Group is helping the hospitality industry move further toward reducing its footprint and developing and operating high-performing green buildings.”