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Off the Shelf

Introduction

EPA Region 7 Office at Night
Cast in the spirit of partnership, the Green Team was formed in June of 1998 by members of the General Services Administration (GSA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Koll Development Company, Langdon Wilson Architects and Koll Construction. The partnership adopted the name "Green Team" and began development of a program to document their efforts towards the commitment of creating an environmentally sensitive or "green" project. Each member volunteered the time and effort (beyond that of their primary responsibilities to the project) to research, document and evaluate the "green" aspects within the different disciplines of the building. The goal was to evaluate and recommend environmentally responsible products and practices that could be incorporated into the building without significantly impacting the cost or schedule of the project. Standard "off the shelf" building products and systems were utilized incorporating the desired "green" qualities. The term "green" in this sense, refers not only to the application of environmentally friendly building products, but also takes into consideration the manufacturing process of products, installation process, waste management and the maintenance processes over the life of the building. In many cases, making the "green" choice simply meant utilizing a different means or method of application. This publication, "Off the Shelf", is the product of this Team's endeavor to help educate all who read it. It should be used as a tool to help any venture of industry and government to be responsible in their judgement, selection and attitude towards the development of buildings.

This publication, this building, these individuals may appear to be small and insignificant in the overall scope of worldwide building development, but the responsibility of choices must start with each of us, each day. The lessons learned through this experience will help to raise the bar of awareness and accomplishment for the next group of individuals assigned to the task of developing a project of any type.

What we were able to take from this experience was far more than we put into it. This book is a dedication to the efforts of the Green Team, whose paradigm as professionals has been changed for the better, as a result of this experience. For that, we are truly grateful.

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