Thursday, May 21, 2009

great ideas from mid-state: The Lazarus Building creates a distinction for Columbus

Here are a few great ideas about sustainability and preservation coming out of the Columbus Chamber of Commerce.  The ideas are both specific to the Lazarus project and also applicable to “green buildings” in general. I’ve provided the entire text here in case the site page goes away after a while.

The Lazarus Building

Once a thriving department store and Columbus landmark, Lazarus has been renovated into a premier "green" office space. Located in the heart of downtown, the Lazarus Building is once again a prominent destination due to its innovative method of redevelopment. The method included recycling more than 75 percent of the materials removed from the facility and the inclusion of a rooftop living garden which keeps the building cool. The Lazarus Building is the most significant "green" building in the country and is certified Gold through the LEED Program. The Lazarus Building provides space for 2,600 jobs in Downtown Columbus.

History/Value of Renovating the Lazarus Building:
  • Important not to demolish the building – it's a community and historic landmark.
  • The Lazarus Building is actually seven buildings, the first building – the East Building – opened in 1909. The other additions were added over the following 60 years. Reconstruction involved dealing with diverse structural systems, differing elevations, unseen and unknown conditions. Significant aspects of this project resembled an exercise in urban archaeology as much as executing 21st century construction.
  • The renovation was a tipping point and a showcase for Mayor Michael Coleman's "Get Green" program.
  • The renovation of Lazarus could be viewed as an "anchor" for the redevelopment of downtown.
  • Lazarus could be a "sample box" – an example for all of Columbus and Ohio to better understand what it means to develop a landmark building with environmental sustainability as its central focus.
  • A larger objective was to enable residents of Columbus and surrounding areas to utilize the Lazarus Building as a "teaching tool" and learning experience for students, real estate professionals such as contractors, architects and developers, and residents working or living downtown. Through displays, exhibits and tours, they can understand the lessons of Lazarus and utilize these lessons in their daily, personal and professional lives.
Six major hallmarks of "Green Buildings"
  • Sustainable Development
    • The recycling of existing buildings, such as Lazarus, rather than building new buildings both conserves resources and helps revitalize urban centers.
  • Energy Conservation
    • Buildings use 65 percent of all electricity within the United States.
    • Efficient building systems and “daylight harvesting” for Lazarus’ oversized windows and center atrium enable the building's energy systems to operate 30 percent more efficiently and at a reduced cost.
  • Clean Air and Global Warming
    • Buildings consume more than 40 percent of the energy produced in the country, adding to the emission of CO2 and other Greenhouse Gases.
    • Efficient mechanical systems, conservation and support for renewable energy sources such as wind power improve air quality and minimize the adverse impact of CO2 and other emissions.
  • Water Conservation
    • Water usage in U.S. buildings accounts for 42 billion gallons per day, which equals 88 percent of our nation’s potable water supply.
    • Lazarus' "grey water system" and highly efficient plumbing fixtures reduce water consumption by up to 80 percent.
  • Indoor Air Quality
    • Non-toxic adhesives, sealants and paints were used throughout the building, and adhering during construction to stringent air quality plan created a superior interior environment - conducive to increased worker productivity.
  • Resource Conservation
    • Buildings use 50 percent of all woods and materials nationally, while construction waste is estimated to account for 150 million tons each year.
    • Lazarus' recycling programs, during demolition, reconstruction and occupancy were all geared to conserve resources and reduce energy consumption.
Green Characteristics of Lazarus:
  • "Art Deco" lobby consisting of architecture similar to the 1920's, while utilizing 21st century materials.
  • 7-Story light well, efficient building systems and "daylight harvesting" for Lazarus' oversized windows and center atrium enables the building's energy systems to operate 30 percent more efficiently and at a reduced cost.
  • The lobby and all other finished spaces in Lazarus were constructed using recycled products or are considered sustainable.
  • The floor in the lobby is terrazzo from recycled glass.
  • The elevator and trim is recycled metal.
  • The wall trim is made from wheat board instead of customary drywall.
  • Bamboo was used as a flooring material because it’s a sustainable material. Bamboo is not a tree—it's a grass, and it grows like one. Many species of bamboo can grow two feet or more a day. When it's harvested, it need not be replanted, because it will grow a new shoot from its extensive root system. So bamboo renews itself readily, unlike hardwood trees, which, once cut, are gone forever. Bamboo is an endlessly renewable resource.
  • Green planted roof – 1/3 of an acre in size – with living plants reduces summer heat buildup.
  • Rainwater is harvested for cooling.
  • 75 percent of the construction and demolition debris was recycled.
  • Low-flow plumbing.
  • Energy efficient windows that reduce utility cost by 25 percent.
  • Recycled materials were used wherever possible.

The Lazarus Building recycled more than 50 percent of the materials removed from the project.

For more information on green buildings, visit

Lazarus Building

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing such nice post here. I like this site and it is very informative and hence people who will come across this site will gain lot of information. I am very glad to being a part of this site! I will visit this site in future too.