Sustainability Expertise

Let's Build Better.

Better for the world we inhabit. Better for our families, friends, and communities to prosper. Better for our youngest generation to grow, learn, and impact the future.

As we transform our clients’ visions into realities, we make them sustainable in every sense – technically, socially, commercially, and environmentally. With a forward-thinking, lean and green approach, Choate has consistently stayed at the forefront of the sustainable building evolution and is recognized as a Top 100 national leader in sustainable construction.

F E A T U R E D | Interface Headquarters: First project in Georgia to pursue LEED v4 Platinum Certification. WELL Gold certification is also being pursued.

We make it our goal to work with you to identify and deliver solutions that achieve maximum ROI. Whether you’re wishing to pursue certification or integrate sustainable building features within your project, investing in the long-term payoff is just smart business.

Tailored Solutions for Every Project

Choate has the construction and consultation experience to implement varying levels of involvement based on your goals.

We understand that such building features are of interest to many of our clients and provide opportunities for cost savings in operations, energy consumption, and increased occupant productivity and health.

Learn more about sustainable solutions tailored to you!

Building for Maximum Impact

Consulting the established resources for green buildings such as LEED, Fitwel, WELL, Green Globes, and Energy Star give us a variety of options that can be tailored to fit your needs. Our team is able to guide your project through design, implementation, and documentation to achieve your specific goals.

Think building green takes spending a lot of green? Quite the contrary!

As buildings become increasingly complex, the savings from energy-efficient, front-end expenditures can provide significant long-term savings. Let our team of experts explain how your building can work for you.

Profile of a Choate Employee Owner

Sara O'Mara, LEED Fellow, WELL AP

Director of Environmental Services

Sara O’Mara is a groundbreaking leader in the construction market who has led Choate to the top of the class in sustainable construction in the Southeast. She is a LEED Fellow and held the Constructor of Buildings seat on USGBC’s National Board of Directors as well as USGBC’s Advisory Council. Sara’s experience and knowledge in the field of sustainable construction is immense, having personally worked on 140 high-performance buildings (16+ million square feet) to date.

What’s the best part about your job?

Helping an owner have an “Aha! moment” in regard to improving their ROI by incorporating sustainability initiatives into their project.

What’s a sustainable construction trend you see making great impact?
    • Resiliency: Resilience in design and construction, the intentional design of buildings, landscapes, communities, and regions in order to respond to natural and manmade disasters and disturbances—as well as long-term changes resulting from climate change.
    • Carbon as a metric is the newest challenge the sustainability industry is tackling. Carbon footprint is known by carbon emitted due to consumption of fossil fuels by a person, group or company. Carbon reduction will be the game changer in the fight for global climate change and the only place to start is understanding what our footprint is now in the form of metrics.
    • Wellness: I only see wellness-feature-impacts increasing in demand from clients
    • Zero Net Energy Buildings: The demand for this will only increase, a zero energy building produces enough renewable energy to meet its own annual energy consumption requirements, thereby zeroing out their dependence on nonrenewable energy in the building sector
What part of your career have you been most proud?

Being a part of the growth of sustainable projects Choate has successfully built. It started by going to Dave with an interest and seeing an opportunity to differentiate ourselves within our industry. Choate has now constructed 112 high-performance buildings through all six offices and continue seeing an upswing in the market.

At Choate, we're constantly looking for new, innovative marketplace solutions to enhance structures to better both the environment and your bottom line. In 2018, we advanced our innovative offerings to grow Choate's capacity seven-fold. Sustainability services include:

LEED Rating System

What is it? Globally recognized as the most widely used third-party verification for sustainable buildings

  • Addresses a project’s impact on the environment, as well as increasing efficiencies in water, waste, energy, material and indoor air quality (all being directly correlated to opportunities for cost savings in operations and occupant satisfaction)

Featured | With a core purpose of speeding innovation to market in the field of wind energy, the Clemson University SCE&G Energy Innovation Center is a regional, national, and global award-winning facility housing the world’s most sophisticated and powerful wind turbine drivetrain testing equipment. An engineering and construction marvel, the LEED Gold certified facility is supports the critical testing of next generation off-shore wind turbines through the utilization of 15-megawatt and 7.5-megawatt testing rigs. The Innovation Center is also home to the Duke Energy eGRID, a 15-megawatt hardware-in-the-loop grid simulator.

FitWel Standard

What is it? Facility Innovations Toward Wellness Environmental Leadership

  • Rating system developed by the GSA and CDC for multi-family residential and workplace properties. FitWel balances building and workplace features against a baseline of criteria that create a health-promoting environment
  • Designed to influence seven health impact categories:
    1. Community health
    2. Reducing morbidity and absenteeism
    3. Supporting social equality for vulnerable populations
    4. Instilling feelings of wellbeing
    5. Providing healthy good options
    6. Promoting occupant safety
    7. Increasing physical activity

WELL Building Standard

What is it? Evidence-based performance standard for measuring the built environment impacts on occupant health and wellness. WELL is similar to LEED with an added focus on employee health.

  • Integrates strategies to improve ongoing operational and policy protocols through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, mind and innovation

Featured | As a sustainability-minded firm, Interface’s Atlanta office reflects their personal values and pursues LEED v4 Platinum and WELL Gold certification. Water re-use and carbon containment are key to the project. A chilled beam system is used for the HVAC.

Green Globes

What is it? Consensus-based rating system addressing energy conservation, lowered water consumption, and responsible use of materials

  • Certification benefits our clients by reducing operating costs, identifying tax incentives, and meeting government regulations
  • Certification is specifically tailored for travel and tourism with diversified standards for 13 industry sectors of the hospitality and tourism industry

Featured | Located within the LEED Gold certified Nexton Office I, WestRock’s fourth floor interior upfit marks the second interior upfit project in the U.S. to achieve 4 Green Globes Certification for Sustainable Interiors.


What is it? Collection of tools and resources to help businesses determine cost-effective approaches to managing building energy use

  • Enables the private sector to save energy, increase profits, and strengthen their competitiveness
  • EnergyStar buildings typically use about 35% less energy than average buildings
  • Beyond the positive financial impacts, saving energy also makes a real-world impact in reducing greenhouse gas emissions


What is it? Parksmart is the world’s only certification program that defines, measures and recognizes high-performing, sustainable garages.

  • Offers a roadmap for new and existing parking facilities to use innovative, solutions-oriented strategies. Points are awarded to parking structures for forward-thinking and sustainable practices in three categories: management, programs, and technology structure design.


What is it? The first-of-its-kind digital platform to track sustainability progress through a performance score to help drive continuous and incremental improvement.

  • Helps buildings and places collect, manage and benchmark data to improve performance.
  • Calculates a performance score out of 100, based on data. Arc integrates with Energy Star Portfolio Manager and other industry tools to help teams identify opportunities
  • A performance solution for every tenant space, building, portfolio, and community


What is it? The Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark provides institutional investors with actionable information and the tools needed to accurately monitor and manage the sustainability risks of real estate and infrastructure investments, and prepare for increasingly rigorous environmental, social and governance obligations.

Founded in 2009, the dynamic benchmark provides real assets investors with actionable information and tools needed to proactively monitor and manage the ESG performance of their investments and prepare for increasingly rigorous sustainability issues at the forefront of business decision-making.


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