flexiblefullpage -
billboard - default
interstitial1 - interstitial
Currently Reading

California office/lab construction site earns world’s first TRUE preconstruction zero-waste certification

Contractors

California office/lab construction site earns world’s first TRUE preconstruction zero-waste certification

Located on a former landfill, the Genesis Marina project site is expected to divert over 90% of its waste from landfills and incineration.


By Webcor | September 23, 2021
Field staff source-separate construction materials in the four-tier collection systems
Field staff source-separate construction materials in the four-tier collection systems, built by Webcor jobsite personnel. Photo: Webcor

Genesis Marina, a 570,000-sf commercial office and laboratory project in Brisbane, Calif., has become the world’s first Total Resource Use and Efficiency (TRUE) precertified construction site. The developers are Phase 3 Real Estate Partners, and Bain Capital Real Estate.

The TRUE program is administered by Green Business Certification, Inc. (GBCI), which also implements LEED certification. The TRUE precertification recognizes projects that have implemented the fundamental actions and policies needed to effectively pursue zero waste and have demonstrated a commitment to achieving TRUE certification.

“The companies that will call Genesis Marina home are discovering the future. Programs like the TRUE certification, through its focus on sustainability, reusability, and social responsibility, are key to that future as well,” says Michael Gerrity, President of Phase 3 Real Estate Partners.

Webcor, the general contractor on Genesis Marina, has been in partnership with zero waste consultant All About Waste since March 2021. Located on a former landfill, the Genesis Marina project site is expected to divert over 90% of its waste from landfills and incineration. These efforts help significantly reduce carbon emissions, support public health, and promote local jobs and alternatives to the traditional approach of disposing of the materials – aligning with stringent California policies driving the Golden State to a circular economy future.

“The official TRUE certification standard was designed for existing facilities, not construction sites,” says Denise Braun, principal at All About Waste. “There’s a lot of potential for growth in that arena, and Webcor has created the foundation to manage both on-site field and in-office waste in an effective, progressive manner.”

“While LEED focuses on mainly energy and water efficiency” – Genesis Marina is pursuing LEED Gold certification – “TRUE certification helps the site dramatically reduce waste that is brought in while also ensuring that removed waste is reused and diverted from becoming trash. TRUE is a rigorous zero waste program in part because it does not accept incineration as a diversion strategy,” says Celeste McMickle, director at the U.S. Green Building Council.

Pallet recycling
Pallets being salvaged and awaiting to be sent back to Webcor’s equipment yard for reuse. Photo: Webcor.

The pursuit of TRUE certification directly aligns with Webcor’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategy: Two of the Waste Management goals established on its CSR website state the company’s commitments to implementing a TRUE program for zero waste on a jobsite by the end of next year and to reducing overall waste by 2% annually.

“Construction is one of the leading industries in waste, but it doesn’t have to be,” says Soonrock Park, the Webcor senior project manager overseeing Genesis Marina. “TRUE encourages all participants, from designers to end users, to consider the full circular economy of the materials we bring to a site and use within our operations. The goal is to divert all solid waste from the landfill, incineration, and the environment.”

“About 65% of all U.S. waste comes from construction and demolition debris, yet in California only 40% of that C&D debris is diverted from landfills,” adds Webcor Sustainability Director Jenelle Shapiro. “To put it in perspective, our one construction

business, on average, generates 1,700 tons of C&D debris monthly, which annually is equivalent to 130 blue whales – the largest animal in the world. For perspective, a blue whale is the length of a Boeing 737. That is a lot of waste, and a lot of opportunity, and we are just one general contractor.”

Shapiro says Webcor didn’t pick an “easy” project. “It has no demolition debris, which usually accounts for the majority of the total diversion percentage weight. This means that meeting the minimum 90% diversion rate requirement is even more difficult than it would be on a more typical project, but we didn’t want to take the easy approach. We wanted to challenge ourselves and the market to make it feasible on any type of project!”

Achieving TRUE certification is no simple feat. To be considered eligible, projects must meet a minimum of seven program requirements (prerequisites) and attain at least 31 points on the TRUE scorecard. Such criteria includes implementing a zero waste policy by diverting 90% of all waste generated, as well as meeting all solid waste and recycling regulations.

“Many other certifications were designed decades ago to spur on sustainable design,” says Brock Hill, vice president at Premiere Recycle Company, a Recycling Certification Institute–certified waste hauler and processing facility managing the construction debris for Genesis Marina. “While they have had success, an entire industry has been built around achieving those points. Changing those certifications is synonymous to turning a moving cruise ship. Pursuing TRUE takes courage to blaze a new path; it's not a cookie-cutter process in current norms.”

“We need to change the mentality of personnel at all levels – field, office, vendors, manufacturers, etc. – and inspire them to care about waste and the way it’s being handled,” says Miranda Nowlen, a Webcor senior project engineer on Genesis Marina who has championed the project’s pursuit of TRUE certification. “Implementing a program like TRUE certification challenges the designers, general contractors, trade partners, vendors, and end users to be conscious of where the product began and where it will end – something that isn’t always considered.”

 

ABOUT WEBCOR

Webcor is a premier provider of commercial construction services, known for its innovative and efficient approach, wide range of experience, cost-effective design-build methodology, skill in concrete construction and expertise in building landmark projects. Founded in 1971 and honored as one of the Greenest Builders in California, Healthiest Employers, Top Corporate Philanthropists, Best Places to Work and Largest California Construction Firms, Webcor has offices in San Francisco, Alameda, San Jose, San Diego, and Los Angeles.

ABOUT ALL ABOUT WASTE

All About Waste is a woman- and minority-owned sustainability and zero waste consulting firm based in California. It is WBE, MBE, and DBE certified and has worked to certify more than 200 different LEED, WELL, Fitwel, and TRUE projects, including the first TRUE zero waste high-rise building in the world and the fst multi-tenant and residential building to earnTRUE certification in the world.

Related Stories

Mass Timber | Jun 29, 2022

Mass timber competition: building to net-zero winning proposals

The 2022 Mass Timber Competition: Building to Net-Zero is a design competition to expand the use of mass timber in the United States by demonstrating its versatility across building types and its ability to reduce the carbon footprint of the built environment.

Laboratories | Jun 29, 2022

The "collaboratory" brings digital innovation to the classroom

The Collaboratory—a mix of collaboration and laboratory—is a networking center being designed at the University of Denver’s College of Business.

Airports | Jun 29, 2022

BIG and HOK’s winning design for Zurich airport’s new terminal

Two years ago, Zurich Airport, which opened in the 1950s, launched an international design competition to replace the aging Dock A—the airport’s largest dock.

Laboratories | Jun 28, 2022

The California Science Center breaks grounds on its Air and Space Center

The California Science Center—a hands-on science center in Los Angeles—recently broke ground on its Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center.

Contractors | Jun 27, 2022

Reverse mentorship: A model for the future of the construction workforce

Reverse mentorship can help seasoned professionals develop new skills, stay connected with younger generations, and gain future-forward insights for life and business.

Building Team | Jun 27, 2022

Chapel of St. Ignatius by Steven Holl Architects receives AIA’s twenty-five year award

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) is honoring the Chapel of St. Ignatius in Seattle, designed by Steven Holl Architects, with its Twenty-five Year Award.

Green | Jun 22, 2022

The business case for passive house multifamily

A trio of Passive House experts talk about the true costs and benefits of passive house design and construction for multifamily projects. 

Building Team | Jun 22, 2022

Design for new San Clemente Marine Safety Headquarters would create new public plaza

A proposed design by HMC Architects for a new San Clemente Marine Safety Headquarters makes creative use of the seaside topography of the Pacific Coast.

Augmented Reality | Jun 22, 2022

Not just for POKÉMON GO anymore: how augmented reality is transforming architecture

By solving a long-standing communication problem, Augmented Reality (AR) is poised to make architecture quicker, nimbler, and more cost effective.

Healthcare Facilities | Jun 22, 2022

Arizona State University’s Health Futures Center: A new home for medical tech innovation

In Phoenix, the Arizona State University (ASU) has constructed its Health Futures Center—expanding the school’s impact as a research institution emphasizing medical technology acceleration and innovation, entrepreneurship, and healthcare education.

boombox1 - default
boombox2 -
native1 -

More In Category




halfpage1 -

Most Popular Content

  1. 2021 Giants 400 Report
  2. Top 150 Architecture Firms for 2019
  3. 13 projects that represent the future of affordable housing
  4. Sagrada Familia completion date pushed back due to coronavirus
  5. Top 160 Architecture Firms 2021

 


Magazine Subscription
Subscribe

Get our Newsletters

Each day, our editors assemble the latest breaking industry news, hottest trends, and most relevant research, delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe

Follow BD+C: