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LaGuardia’s New Terminal B Earns Envision Platinum Award for Sustainability, Resilience

LaGuardia Airport Terminal B HOK

Award is the highest honor from the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure; LaGuardia Airport’s Terminal B is the first project to receive such recognition under the newly updated Envision V3 framework.

Projects are evaluated based on a robust set of criteria, including traditional factors, such as reducing emissions, recycling materials, and using renewable energy sources, as well as more holistic indicators of social and economic sustainability, such as minimizing construction impacts, providing employment opportunities for local residents, resilient design, and improving mobility and access.

Excerpted from Sustainable Infrastructure:

Some of the factors that contributed to the project earning an Envision Platinum award include:

Improving resiliency

The design and operations take into account a range of potential climate change threats such as sea-level rise and extreme weather events such as hurricanes and nor’easters, storm surges, and heat waves. To ensure that the Port Authority incorporates climate resiliency in every project, the agency adopted Climate Resilience Design Guidelines in 2015. The intent of the guidelines is to maximize the long-term safety, service, and resilience of the Port Authority’s assets.

Planning for long-term monitoring and maintenance

In order for infrastructure to be sustainable it must be designed and built in a way that does not preclude efficient operations and maintenance over the life cycle of the asset. In addition, resources and plans must be put in place that ensure the asset is being managed and monitored to determine if the programs, systems and equipment are functioning as anticipated and that a response plan can be implemented should a fault be detected. To this end, long-term monitoring and maintenance began well before the first shovel hit the ground on the project. Included in the commercial terms of this P3, the lease agreement requires LaGuardia Gateway Partners* to operate, monitor and maintain the asset according to a robust set of expectations set forth by the Port Authority that are to be met throughout the duration of the 30-year concession period.

Quantifying economic, social, and environmental benefits

Using Autocase software, the team conducted a triple bottom line, cost benefit analysis over the lifecycle of the project to demonstrate the social, environmental, and financial benefits associated with improving energy performance, managing indoor air quality during construction, reducing outdoor and indoor water use, reducing heat island effects, using low-emitting materials, and making sustainable siting decisions.

*LGP includes Vantage Airport Group, Skanska ID, Meridiam and JLC Infrastructure for development and equity investment; Skanska-Walsh as the design-build joint venture; HOK and WSP for architecture and engineering; and Vantage Airport Group for airport operations and management.

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