Groundbreaker Awards

Tue, 9/19/2017 - 6:00pm - 9:30pm

1900 Market Street, Atrium, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Event Summary

Join industry leaders and advocates on Tuesday, September 19th to celebrate green building innovation in the region!

DVGBC is excited to host the 2017 Groundbreaker Awards in the Atrium at 1900 Market Street. With a soaring 8-story sunlit atrium and $25M in improvements—including the addition of a koi pond, waterfall and two fireplaces—1900 Market Street is an inspiring work environment. The commercial office property utilizes green practices in lighting, waste management, and promoting transportation alternatives, achieving LEED Certification in 2016 and receiving Energy Star Certification since 2012. 

Honorary Chair: Chris Happ, CEO, Goby

Groundbreakers attendees will be entered to win one free ticket to this year's Greenbuild Conference, happening in Boston November 8th - 10th! 

Event Details


1900 Market Street, Atrium, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Date and Time:

Tue, 09/19/2017 - 6:00pm - 9:30pm

Event Cost:

DVGBC Members: $125

Non-Members: $200

Program and Schedule:

View 2017 Groundbreaker Awards Program


Business casual, business or cocktail.

What to expect:

The event is an evening networking and cocktail event, not a formal sit-down dinner.  Limited seating will be available. An open bar, passed hors d'oeuvres, dinner and dessert will be available.

Directions & Parking:

1900 Market Street is located in downtown Philadelphia and is easily accessible by car or public transit.  If traveling by car, there are a variety of parking garages nearby, including one at 1919 Market Street, with the entrance on 20th Street between Market and JFK Blvd.  The 1919 Market Street parking garage is $12 after 5:30 PM. 

Please enter the Atrium at 1900 Market Street from the entrance at the corner of 19th and Market Streets.

And many thanks to our Promotional Partners:

City of Philadelphia Office of Sustainability, Green Philly, GRID Magazine, Sustainable Business Network, BIA Philadelphia and BOMA Philadelphia.

Individual and Organization Awardees

Green Building United is honoring one individual and one organization for their demonstrated commitment to sustainability in the built environment. The past three years have included recognition of both for-profit and non-profit organizations; this is the first year that an individual is being recognized.

Individual Awardee: Scott Mazo

Organization Awardee: Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House

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Scott Mazo

Scott Mazo is the Founder and CEO of University Place Associates, a visionary real estate developer dedicated to the highest standards in social responsibility. He has over 30 years of experience promoting responsible development in University City, and he partners with local community groups to best serve residents and visitors alike. Scott’s success at 2.0 University Place has culminated in his latest proposal for the Platinum Corridor at 40th and Market Streets. The series of LEED Platinum buildings shall feature ground floor retail and Class A commercial office space above, including two new speculative office buildings along Market Street called 3.0 University Place and 4.0 University Place. Scott’s ambitious vision to build only LEED Platinum has energized the Philadelphia marketplace, establishing that sustainable design is not a fad or a cost add, but a smart investment for our community and the environment.

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Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House

Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House's investment in innovative, energy efficient, and water conservation upgrades has made the charity a model for businesses that conserve energy while saving money. The projects they have implemented saved 31,827 kWhs of energy, and the cost savings and incentives meant that the charity was able to pay back the cost of the retrofit in just 1.4 years.

Even with a 3% increase in their occupancy rate, they have reduced energy costs from over $102,000 to $85,204 over five years. To do this, the non-profit implemented energy efficiency measures including upgrades to inefficient lighting, adding occupancy/motion sensors, installing programmable thermostats, adding a boiler cycling controller, and replacing 66, 20-year-old windows.

The energy efficient retrofits do more than conserve energy, they directly impact the non-profit’s bottom line. Since the retrofit, money saved through efficiency upgrades is re-invested directly into the charity's programs. Through these initiatives, Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House supports the families of seriously ill children by creating a community of comfort and hope.

Project Finalists

Green Building United is proud to announce the six project finalists for the 2017 Groundbreaker Awards! Project finalists were selected by this year's jury for their innovation, leadership, and commitment to sustainability in the built environment. Winners will be announced the night of the event.

2017 project finalists
Clockwise from upper left corner: Chester Arthur School; FMC Tower at Cira Centre South; PlayArts; The Whitehall; University of Pennsylvania, New College House; Wynne Senior Residences



Chester Arthur School

Project Team

Architect/Designer | SALT Design Studio

Engineer | University of New Hampshire Stormwater Center

General Contractor | BrightLine Construction

Owner | School District of Philadelphia

Landlord/Property Manager | School District of Philadelphia & Philadelphia Water


Additional Project Team | 

Friends of Chester Arthur

The College of New Jersey: Center for Excellence in Stem Education

Cornerstone Consulting

Shift Space Design

About the Project

SALT was commissioned to redesign the Chester Arthur schoolyard and translate STEM curriculum for outdoor learning. Designed with a holistic approach, the new schoolyard promotes sustainable city living through understanding and stewardship of natural systems that we use every day. 

This project uses green stormwater infrastructure as a triple bottom line tool for place-making, and redefines the traditional schoolyard model for the School District of Philadelphia. A new native landscape initiates dialogue about vital habitat in an urban environment, and renovations provide important gathering space to a densely populated and transitional area of Philadelphia. Dynamic social space has been integrated into the schoolyard, which has increased opportunities for positive interaction among residents in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood. Through the efforts of a public-private partnership, the Chester Arthur schoolyard now serves as a model for city schools, showcasing the benefits for changing urban schoolyards into high-performance, deep-green community hubs.

FMC Tower at Cira Centre South

Project Team

Architect/Designer | BLT Architects (Architect of Record, Residential Architect, Amenity Space Interior Designer, LEED Consultant)

Engineer | BALA Consulting Engineers (MEP/FP Engineering)

General Contractor | Turner Construction Company

Owner | Brandywine Realty Trust

Occupant/Tenant | FMC Corporation

Landlord/Property Manager | Brandywine Realty Trust

Additional Project Team | 

Design Architect: Clarke Pelli Architects

Civil Engineer: Pennoni Associates 

Structural Engineer: Thornton Thomasetti 

Occupant/Tenant: University of Pennsylvania

Hotel, Residential & Amenity Operator: AKA

Restaurant Operator: Walnut Street Café

Landscape Architect: Ground Reconsidered

Vertical Transport: Lerch Bates, Inc., Andrew Foutes 

Code Consulting: Arup

Signage: Calori & Vanden-Eynden

Lighting Design: CBB Lighting Design

Wind Study: RWDI

Exterior Envelope: Curtain Wall Design Consulting

Pool Consultant: STO Design Group

Acoustical Consultant: Cerami Associates

Interior Designer: Asfour Guzy (Interior Designer, Residential Lobby/Units)

Interior Designer: Lissoni Associati (Interior Designer, FF&E for AKA)


About the Project

FMC Tower at Cira Centre South is a new vertical neighborhood with over one million square feet on 49 floors, approximately 725 feet tall, with 18 residential/hotel floors above 25 office floors, and shared amenity spaces and common services. Designed, built, and managed as a green building, it is on the path to LEED Silver Certification. The high-performance tower saves energy and water use while offering great views, green roofs, and plazas. The tower uses both on-site micro-turbines and purchased green power to reduce energy impacts. Brandywine continues its commitment to monitoring water and energy use, and comprehensive green housekeeping programs. The design takes advantage of its site location within walking distance of an extensive transit hub, two great universities, the park, and the riverfront, providing a great example of the economic benefit of high quality, transit-oriented development.


Project Team

Architect/Designer | Bright Common

Engineer | Larsen + Landis

General Contractor | Steve Yutzy-Burkey

Owner | Burkey Holdings LLC

Occupant/Tenant | PlayArts

Landlord/Property Manager | Burkey Holdings LLC


Additional Project Team | 

MEP Engineer: Hutec Engineering LLC


About the Project

Built in 1907, this once public bath house at Front and Thomson Streets sits at the cross roads of three neighborhoods: Fishtown, South Kensington, and Northern Liberties. Today, a locally grown, play-based arts and enrichment center for kids and their parents sits within. This Passive House level, deep-energy retrofit, hosts art and music instruction, adventure-based play, and a small café, and is one of many structures to spring up along the burgeoning Front Street corridor. The project excelled due to an integrated design team of architect, general contractor, and consultants, as they explored the best and most natural ways to renovate this building for deep energy savings, long term durability and a high level of indoor air quality. PlayArts sits as a model for how to enter into an unknown, energy-descent future where the whole community can thrive.

The Whitehall 

Project Team

Architect/Designer | Architectural Concepts PC

Engineer | BSEG LLC/Building Systems Engineering Group

General Contractor | CH and E Construction

Owner | Mission First Housing Group

Landlord/Property Manager | Columbus Property Management Inc.


Additional Project Team | 

Passive House Rater, HERS Rater, Energy & Green Building Consultant: MaGrann Associates

Passive House Consultant: Onion Flats

Structural Engineer: Baker Ingram & Associates

Civil Engineer: Cedarville Engineering Group LLC


About the Project

The Whitehall, located in Spring City, PA, and developed by Mission First Housing Group, is a truly unique project. It is an outstanding example of how high performance building design and construction can be achievable for the affordable housing segment of the building industry. Occupants of The Whitehall enjoy well designed, energy efficient units that will save them money on their monthly energy bills, as the project generates significantly less energy use because of its Passive House design and construction. Numerous other green features in the project include: ENERGY STAR appliances and lighting, ERVs and other high performance HVAC and ventilation equipment, high performance windows and elevator systems, low- or no-VOC paints, sealants, adhesives, formaldehyde-free materials, and low flow fixtures and faucets. 

Installation of a fitness center, open space, and a community garden all contribute to a healthier lifestyle for residents. And residents benefit from The Whitehall’s on-site supportive/social services and links to the Coatesville VA Medical Center.

The Whitehall is helping to promote further revitalization in Spring City and Chester County while helping create a bridge to new opportunities for residents through on-site supportive services, convenient mass transit connections,  and accessibility to employment. The Community Room, planned activities, and the adjacent Community Garden at The Whitehall all encourage a sense of community and social interaction among residents.

University of Pennsylvania, New College House

Project Team

Architect/Designer | Bohlin Cywinski Jackson

Engineer | Pennoni

General Contractor | Intech Construction

Owner | University of Pennsylvania


Additional Project Team | 

MEP/FP Engineering and LEED Consultant: AHA Consulting Engineers


About the Project

The 198,000 gross square feet New College House is the University of Pennsylvania’s first purpose-built college house designed to bring together 350 students, faculty, staff, and graduate students into one living-learning community. Spanning an entire city block on Chestnut Street between 33rd and 34th Streets in Philadelphia, this gateway building restores the site beyond convention by preserving a vital green space for its residents and surrounding community members. Signature features include a staggered brick and limestone façade punctuated by vertical glass towers; clusters of residential suites and an array of bi-level commons; spaces for dining, media, and seminars; a private courtyard; and a publicly-accessible elevated green. With green roofs on 70% of rooftop surfaces, sophisticated HVAC, lighting, and building envelope systems, and careful integration within the architectural fabric of campus, New College House stands as a thriving, sustainable environment for Penn’s scholars and surrounding community.

Wynne Senior Residences

Project Team

Architect/Designer | K&A Architectural Services, LLC

Engineer | K&A Architectural Services, LLC (MEP)

General Contractor | DOMUS, Inc.

Owner | Pennrose Properties, LLC

Landlord/Property Manager | Pennrose Management Company


Additional Project Team | 

Structural Engineer: Bevan Lawson, PE 

Civi Engineer: T&M Associates 

Geotechnical Engineer: Advantage Engineers, LLC

Passive House Verifier, Enterprise Green Communities Verifier and ENERGY STAR® Certifier: Innova Services Corporation

Passive House Consultant: WRT

Commissioning: K&A Architectural Services

Legal Counsel: Wynnefield Overbrook Revitalization Corporation, Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority, Berman Indictor LLP 


About the Project

Wynne Senior Residences is a new four-story, 51-unit affordable senior rental project located in the Wynnefield-Overbrook section of West Philadelphia. Completed in June 2017, the building replaces an important community landmark (The Wynne Theater, and later banquet hall) originally built in 1927, which served the neighborhood and surrounding community as a staple of local entertainment and social events for nearly seven decades. A combined effort of key community stakeholders, the project brings critical affordable housing options to Philadelphia seniors, as well as retail opportunities aimed at long-term revitalization of the neighborhood, all while reconnecting a community with an important piece of its history.

Taking full advantage of incentive points offered through the PHFA Tax Credit program, Wynne Senior Residences was designed to meet PHIUS+ 2015 Passive Building Standards, and was required to meet both mandatory and additional scoring points under the Enterprise Green Communities program.

Food and Dring

Catering by 12th Street Catering – Hear what SBNphilly had to say about them!  



Specialty Cocktail: Rosemary Nectarine Whiskey Sour

Beer: Provided by Yards Brewing Company

Red & White Wines: Selection Provided by Moore Brothers Wine Company



Domestic, Local Sourced, Imported & Nut-based Cheese Selection

And a variety of Passed Hors D'oeuvres


Main Course - Farm Fresh Sliders*

Buffalo Chicken Sliders with Blue Cheese Aioli & Bibb Lettuce
Kobe Burger Sliders with Cheddar, Applewood Smoked Bacon & Sliced Tomatoes

Avocado Veggie Slider with Cilantro Citrus Veggie Slaw


Sweet Potato Waffle Fries dusted with Sage & Smoked Sea Salt

Yukon Potato Wedges Drizzled with Rosemary Truffle Oil


Trio of Dipping Sauces: Honey Grain Mustard, Basil Pesto, Bluee Truffle Ketchup


Red Veggie Slaw with Beets, Cabbage, Radicchio, Parsnips, Apples, Cranberries & Agave Caraway Vinagrette



Minature Vegan Panna Cotta Selection:

Tarragon with Macerated Strawberries

Butternut Squash with Salted Whiskey

Caramel Creme Fraiche with Bluberry Compote

Ginger Peach Cardamom


*Gluten-free and vegan options have been considered with the above menu

Legacy Partners

Platinum Partners

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