- February 2008: Volume 20, Number 2

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Something Old, Something New: Green Trend Impacts Existing Buildings

by Rachel McMurdie

Much of the emphasis and news coverage for the industry’s growing “green” trend has focused on the development of new buildings. In fact, there’s hardly a new class A commercial office building these days that isn’t labeled “green.” But proponents of green building say the real challenge and opportunity for sustainability lies with the existing building stock. In the coming years, building owners and investors are expected to place a greater emphasis on green retrofits to meet the growing societal and corporate environmental awareness, as well as gain a competitive edge in the marketplace. Perhaps one of the first examples was a building in Northern California’s Silicon Valley.

In downtown San Jose, the headquarters of Adobe Systems Inc. is a mountainous tower of granite and glass rising up in an understated way toward the airplane flight paths overhead. Though it looks like other office buildings constructed circa 1995, this corporate headquarters h

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