SAN FRANCISCO, CA / ACCESSWIRE / July 28, 2020 / California general contractor Webcor recently achieved WELL Gold Certification for its 18,000-square-foot office renovation in San Francisco, becoming the 16th office in the state to achieve this impressive milestone.
Awarded on June 26 by the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), the certification recognizes the office for earning a score of 67 points - comfortably over the minimum 60-point threshold for Gold - in a rigorous assessment using the Institute's performance-based rating system for measuring, certifying, and monitoring building features that impact human health and wellness. The criteria include air, water, nourishment, light, movement, thermal comfort, sound, materials, mind, and community. WELL is grounded in a body of evidence-based research that explores the connection between the buildings in which we spend approximately 90 percent of our time and the health and wellness impacts on the people inside these buildings.
"When we began planning the renovation in early 2018, we knew we wanted to build a space that reflected our craft, core values, and employee wellness," says Webcor Sustainability Director Jenelle Shapiro. "WELL Certification focuses on the health and well-being of the people within a building's space, aligning with three of Webcor's core values: Bold, Innovate, and Community."
With this rare achievement on its resume, Webcor joins a small group of industry leaders that have prioritized building wellness, exemplifying its steadfast commitment to improving the employee experience.
"We invested our effort and money in achieving this certification to protect our most important resource - our community of people," says Webcor President and CEO Jes Pedersen. "Building an office that supports our employees' health and their ability to work at their optimum level fits right into our ongoing goal of searching for more effective ways to help them excel.
"The value of WELL Certification really comes into play when you're fitting the workplace to the people, rather than the people to the workplace. The building offers a spacious kitchen and eating area, break-out rooms for smaller conversations, showers for commuters, private rooms for nursing mothers, and rejuvenation spaces - all things you wouldn't have found in the standard office," Pedersen says.
The environment was created through the synthesis of bold design decisions and mindfully selected elements - such as sustainably sourced materials and furnishings, health-responsive lighting, exceptional air quality monitoring systems, and in-house foliage (over 575 plants) - that contribute to the office's employee-centered atmosphere and symbolize the balance between the built and natural worlds.
All office materials, from drywall and flooring to carpets and ceilings, were hand-selected based on optimal sustainability criteria, including sourcing impact and effect on air quality. Webcor acquired furniture and materials from companies with take-back programs for end-of-life waste management and a tangible commitment to corporate social responsibility.
A team of dedicated professionals from Webcor's sustainability, core & shell, and self-perform groups joined forces to achieve this ambitious certification.
"We decided to pursue the entire WELL Certification ourselves instead of hiring a third-party consultant," Shapiro says. "Ultimately, that meant we had to learn the ins and outs of the certification process and ensure we were in line with our core team - architects, engineers, and Webcor as the owner and contractor - and ensure we didn't miss any nuances."
The self-perform work by Webcor's specialty divisions - Webcor Carpentry for doors/millwork/finish carpentry, Webcor Concrete Group for custom countertops, and Webcor Drywall for framing and drywall - was designed to challenge the groups in terms of creativity, craftsmanship, and process to build, making the overall project more personal and rewarding for Webcor and every contributing team member. The result was a workspace that embodies Webcor's culture and core values, empowering employees to build better at work every day.
For more information about IWBI and WELL, please visit wellcertified.com.
Photo credits: Adam Rouse Photography
Webcor is a premier provider of commercial construction services, known for its innovative and efficient approach, wide range of experience, cost-effective design-build methodology, skill in concrete construction and expertise in building landmark projects. Webcor's mission is to build structures of superior quality with integrity, continuously improve its processes by employing the best talent in the industry, and add social and economic value to its communities. Founded in 1971 and repeatedly honored as one of the Greenest Builders in California, Healthiest Employers, Top Corporate Philanthropists, Best Places to Work and Largest California Construction Firms, Webcor has offices throughout the state in San Francisco, Alameda, San Jose and Los Angeles. More information is available on the Webcor website and on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Shel Holtz, Internal Communications Director