Historic Fourth Ward Park, Atlanta

Sustainability & Resiliency

We partner with our clients to deliver integrated sustainable solutions. Our enterprising thinking leads to sound choices, providing the best possible economic, social and environmental value on projects.

Our balanced sustainable solutions are resource sensitive and provide private- and public-sector opportunities for economic growth and development. We create quality and diverse spaces that are socially equitable and we consider the broad context of each decision.

More than two decades ago, we established our sustainable solutions program to integrate sustainability into all of our business practices. Our specialists are leaders in climatology, natural resources, renewable energy, green rating systems, commissioning, measurement and verification, and community planning. We provide you with good solutions that are good for your business and your communities and for our planet.

Sustainability & Resiliency Services

Context-Sensitive Design

Our planners and designers use a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach. We work with stakeholders to develop projects that are flexible and responsive, sensitive to the environment and local character, and safe. These projects fit within larger community plans and become assets to their communities — preserving views and historic resources, improving the economy, and elevating natural settings.

Damage Assessment & Grant Management

When disasters strike, our experienced professionals assess the event’s impacts and organize activities focused on life, safety and health to prevent continued damage. Our teams deploy to serve alongside you and your team. We focus on bringing order to the disaster, providing you with proven emergency management professionals and industry-leading technical expertise. We work alongside your staff—attending on-site meetings with agency representatives, assisting with emergency repairs, and joining public meetings to facilitate discussions with multiple departments and agencies. We return your bridges, roadways, water/wastewater facilities, buildings and other infrastructure to operation as quickly as possible. Our grant management services support your reimbursement activities, including Federal Emergency Management Agency - Public Assistance (FEMA PA), Federal Highway Administration - Emergency Relief (FHWA ER), Natural Resources Conservation Service - Emergency Watershed Protection (NRCS - EWP), United States Department of Housing and Urban Development - Community Development Block Grant (HUD - CDBG) and related programs.

Design for Health & Wellness

Whether designing buildings or infrastructure, we use a holistic, outcomes-focused design approach that goes beyond resource conservation to encompass promoting the health and wellness of individuals and communities. We actively work with our on-staff researchers and public health experts to understand and document how our design interventions impact the health and wellness outcomes that our clients and communities care about. We are also evolving our practices to promote positive outcomes in our own spaces, using our own sustainability standards alongside healthy building rating systems.

Green Rating Systems

Our experienced professionals work with a variety of green rating systems, including LEED, Envision, Greenroads, INVEST, and Green Globes. We collaborate with clients in an efficient process that focuses attention on project goals, helping to define sustainability for the project and linking the project’s solutions within the context of sustainability. We strive to leverage the great benefits that can be realized using these systems, such as an enhanced design process, expanded economic benefits, reduced risk, increased accountability and additional recognition opportunities. Learn more  

Greenhouse Gas Management

Our cross-functional team of experts in disciplines such as hydro-meteorology, air quality, renewable energy, and economics work seamlessly to help our clients identify and implement meaningful strategies to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Whether you need to develop your first greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory or engage stakeholders in creating a Climate Action Plan, we can be your trusted advisor to help you mitigate risk, seize opportunities, and make meaningful progress against your goals. Learn more  

Net Zero Evaluations

Our integrative design process establishes a strong link between early building strategic planning, programming, design and eventual operations to optimize lifecycle performance. To create a net-zero project, it is necessary to consider a balance between passive, active and renewable energy solutions. The balance of design considerations should constantly be analyzed for lifecycle benefit and operational feasibility. We conduct energy analyses early and often in the design process, beginning with our Rapid Energy Performance Simulator (REPS), to effectively achieve this balance. We have the benefit of a full range of in-house experts and services to support energy management, energy efficiency, renewable energy and integrated energy solutions to make net zero targets a reality.

Resilient, Hazard-Based Design & Hardening Practices

We assist organizations in proactively developing capabilities to manage and respond to hazards and risks. This process begins by helping clients understand the relationships between infrastructure, facilities, the environment and communities, and then progresses toward the implementation of resilient and sustainable mitigation solutions that reduce your risk. We support you while hardening your infrastructure and restoring your environment — reducing the impacts of natural and man-made disasters. We build off of insights gained from recent response and recovery efforts to provide mitigation project conceptualization, analysis, scoping and funding strategies, as well as sustainable and resilient engineering and design services.

Restorative & Regenerative Design

Even high performance design has some negative impact on the environment and individuals. We have created a design framework that moves beyond basic high performance design and will start to target restorative design metrics at various scales of the built environment. This framework will move designs into “net positive” territory through performance lenses that includes the expertise of not just our architects and building engineers, but our environmental engineers and scientists as well. This framework seeks “net positive” impacts for the carbon cycle, water cycle, nutrient cycle, biodiversity and health.

Sustainable Value Analysis (SVA)

We understand the need to look at triple bottom-line outcomes — economic, social, and environmental. Some of these aspects are easy to quantify, analyze and compare, but others are more difficult. For this reason, we've developed our sustainable value analysis (SVA) process to provide a thorough, transparent alternatives analysis. We explore each of our 10 SVA principles–from accounting for risks and uncertainty to involving stakeholders and subject matter experts–using a suite of proven sustainability valuation methods.

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Vulnerability & Reliability Assessments

We assist organizations in understanding and proactively developing capabilities to examine the potential for, and manage and respond to, hazards and risks. Our multidisciplinary teams perform threat and vulnerability assessments, hazard identification and analysis, economic and risk analysis, and condition and performance assessments to determine risk exposure and provide a more complete understanding of risks to support decision-making. We then support development and implementation of strategies to efficiently and effectively manage and mitigate those risks.

Sustainability + Corporate Responsibility Report

In 2015, our sustainability program turned 20 as our professionals continued pushing boundaries to provide value to our clients through sustainable solutions.