Tag Archives: Green Building

LEED Gold certification our 1st AEC Project!

We hit a bit of a milestone yesterday as the very first project ever run in All-In by a General Contractor was officially granted LEED Gold certification.

It was on the 6th of May, 2011 that we walked into Webcor’s office… Our long-time advisor, Ann Edminster wanted to introduce us to her friend Phil Williams — And Phil immediately brought in his Sustainability and LEED Rockstar, Megan White.

Over the years, we had the chance to do some site visits, work with students who were interested in the project, sit in on LEED charrettes with the team, and learn a whole lot about AEC, its processes, and the way its many teams work together. This project will be in our hearts forever.

Huge Gratitude and Congratulations to Webcor and the whole CMS team!

Site photo from SFGate, August, 2011
Site photo from SFGate, August, 2011

LEED is not a process, but it exposes bad process.

The City of Ottawa has recently been considering dropping it’s requirement that all new buildings of a certain size be LEED certified.

The key reason for this decision given by Ottawa councilman David Churnushenko is that, based on his experience, LEED is costing $50,000 per building in documentation time. Even accounting for hyperbole, that is far too much.

However, it is also an indicator that the citizens of Ottawa are not getting the greenest buildings they could.

Sustainable and regenerative design and development come from relationships, creativity, and Integrative Process; not bureaucracy. LEED certification, it turns out, is an excellent way of measuring how effectively you are using your design and build teams. It is fairly safe to say that if they are treating LEED as just paperwork, just pushing paper and email is how your expensive staff and consultants are spending much of the rest of their time together too. If you are an owner (or city councilman) and your staff is moaning about how LEED documentation is costing you tens of thousands of dollars, you are wasting your money, whether you are seeking LEED certification or not.

This might be a perverse argument in favor of LEED, but it is a proven one.

iLiv has customers who are 30-50% more efficient (and if they are consultants, profitable) per LEED project. They are also delivering higher rated and higher performing buildings to their owners at no additional cost. They don’t see LEED as a burden, but as an invitation to discover and deliver a better and more valuable building.

Back in Ottawa, councilman Churnushenko is making one big false assumption: that by reducing LEED paperwork, his teams will become better green designers and builders. Nope. It takes new skills, like listening, being comfortable working outside of your area of expertise, teasing out and using ideas from anyone no matter what their status or specialty, sharing a vision, asking the hardest questions, trusting.

When all of those are in place, you get the best possible realization that the people, place, owner’s requirements, and environment can produce. And if you have proper processes and utilities in place, and integrate LEED from the beginning, your documentation burden should be trivial.

2012 Wrap Up

Hello World and welcome to the iLiv blog.

We are due to begin blogging in 2013, but I thought a year-end wrap up was a good idea. It gives me chance to warm up as winter comes on.

iLiv has been a startup since 2005, and we still feel like we are starting up. Mostly this has to do with our vision — to change the way people think and work online — and global change can be sloooow. It is happening though.

2012 has been an amazing year for us. Here’s a short list of some of the nice things that happened:

  • iLiv All-In version 2 had it’s 2nd birthday; we launched October 25, 2010 with 12,000 projects ported over from version 1; our 20,000th project was created on September 12, 2012; as I write this, there are 21,301  and all systems are go!
  • We signed a new, two-year contract with long-term customer GBCI; All-In helps GBCI deliver certifications of all LEED projects worldwide (Canada and India excluded).
  • Bill Reed moved from being an advisor to being a partner—we are working to get his ideas on people relationship mapping into a future release—welcome Bill!
  • And Barbara Batshalom is beginning to build up a process in All-In for the Sustainable Performance Institute.
  • We attended our first Bioneers with Paul, Marta, and John Kephart of Rana Creek and Megan White of Webcor Builders; it’s a nice, calm conference with a broad scope of interest; and there we met:
  • Eric Corey Freed, who got All-In in a hurry and is now an iLiv advisor.
  • iLiv’s Karen Tucker spoke at Living Future 2012 at a session with Ann Edminster and Christine Magar.
  • iLiv’s Andrew Culver celebrated John Cage’s centeniary with a lecture in Vienna, Austria, a bit of opera direction in Ostrava, Czech Republic, and an installation in Victoria, Canada.
  • And we worked our first trade show booth ever, at Greenbuild 2012 in San Francisco, where thanks to the innovative and generous spirit of Megan White and Phil Williams of Webcor Builders, we were part of a small group of innovative companies invited to enliven their big booth; it was a full booth every day, and it showed to the entire conference the value of sharing, working together, and building relationships based on vision and meaning; and the booth was also a photo booth!—check out some photos here; Webcor rocks.

A little more about Phil and Megan of Webcor. Every startup dreams of having innovative early adopters who posses the imagination to sense something new and meaningful, the courage to immediately act on it in pursuit of a strategic opportunity, and the generosity to tell the world what they have found and why it is so valuable.

Phil and Megan are iLiv’s picture perfect early adopters, and we can’t thank them enough. And they’re fun!