HOK Team’s $50,000 Donation Brings U.S. Green Building Council’s Project Haiti Closer to Reality
Firm’s Total Donation to Port-au-Prince Orphanage Project Tops $300,000
Corinne Drobot, HOK
NEW YORK – The HOK team that designed the LEED-NC Platinum King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) campus in Thuwal, Saudi Arabia, earned a $50,000 internal award. Instead of dividing this money among the team, HOK Science + Technology Director Bill Odell, FAIA, and other project leaders set out to donate the $50,000 to a needy cause.
HOK's KAUST design team just announced that they have donated this money to the USGBC's Project Haiti Orphanage and Children's Center in Port-au-Prince. Since June 2011, an all-volunteer HOK IMPACT team has worked on their own time and in partnership with the USGBC to design this project, which replaces an orphanage destroyed by the 2010 earthquake.
"Project Haiti would not succeed without HOK's generous pro-bono support as project architect, and we are so very grateful for their ongoing dedication, expertise and passion for this project," said Roger Limoges, USGBC vice president of organizational development and Project Haiti lead. "HOK has already spent countless hours ensuring that Project Haiti will be an innovative, sustainable, LEED-certified example of hope for this region. With this most recent generous contribution of $50,000, they once again take us a step closer to completing this amazing project."
KAUST was the first of what has grown to a list of 16 LEED Platinum projects designed by HOK. Project Haiti may be the next to join that list. The team’s hope is that this donation that began with KAUST – a high-tech example of next-generation sustainable design – plants seeds that will advance a new generation of safe, sustainable design in Haiti.
Inspired by principles of biomimicry, Project Haiti’s net zero energy design uses passive and renewable strategies to support a safe, healthy environment for children, staff and future parents. The building’s systems are designed to provide independence from the city’s unreliable power grid. To ensure a safe water supply, a closed-loop system collects, treats and stores water on-site.
The KAUST team's $50,000 donation comes one month after HOK Chairman Emeritus Bill Valentine, FAIA, made a $20,000 personal gift to Project Haiti. When these donations are added to the HOK team's pro-bono design time, direct expenses and other individual donations, HOK's total contribution to Project Haiti exceeds $300,000. "All of our team members have received much more than we have given," said HOK Director of Sustainable Design Mary Ann Lazarus, FAIA.
The USGBC has nearly raised enough money to begin construction this spring, which would enable the orphanage to open one year later.
HOK IMPACT is the firm’s strategic approach to corporate social responsibility. Its triple-bottom-line approach – focusing on economic, ecological and social sustainability – aims for a promising future for the communities HOK serves around the world. HOK IMPACT promotes architecture as a social work, using design to support and empower communities.
HOK is a global architectural firm that provides planning and design solutions for high-performance, sustainable buildings and communities. Through its collaborative network of 24 offices worldwide, the firm delivers design excellence and innovation to clients globally. Founded in 1955, HOK's expertise includes architecture, interiors, planning and urban design, engineering, strategic facility planning, consulting, lighting, graphics and construction services. In 2012, DesignIntelligence ranked HOK as the #1 role model for sustainable and high-performance design for the third consecutive year.
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