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DENVER-One of the world’s largest owners and developers of distribution facilities is going green, at least here in the US. ProLogis says it will seek certification from the US Green Building Council for all new developments in the states. The locally based public company says it currently has 3.5 million sf in design or under construction for which it will seek the certification and expects to repeat the process for 39 buildings totaling 11 million sf in 2008.

A source with ProLogis tells GlobeSt.com that the company will seek the base-level LEED certification from the USGBC for the core and shell of all new buildings in the US. The company’s existing design standards already qualify for approximately half of the credits required for basic certification.

Outside the US, the company has a number of projects in Asia and Europe that have been developed using environmentally advanced technologies and design features such as wind turbines, solar panels and recycled materials. Many of those projects adhere to green standards set by international rating organizations similar to the USGBC, such as CASBEE in Japan and BREEAM in the UK such that ProLogis will eventually be able to develop facilities that adhere to environmental standards in place on each continent in which it operates, says the source.

“We have made significant strides with sustainable warehouse design and construction, and have best practices being utilized at our projects around the globe,” says ProLogis president/COO Walt Rakowich. “We believe the time is right to take our initiatives a step further.”

Among other things, Rakowich says the initiative will help extend the life of the company’s buildings and help further the sustainability initiatives of its customers. “We see a growing preference among customers to lease space in buildings that have been developed with environmental efficiency in mind,” says Jack Rizzo, managing director of global construction for ProLogis.

ProLogis says it has trained all of its North America project managers on sustainability and USGBC’s LEED standards. So far more than 25 have become LEED Accredited Professionals; the remaining associates are expected to achieve the status over the next few months.

ProLogis operates in 20 countries across North America, Europe and Asia. The company has $34.4 billion of assets owned, managed and under development, comprising 483 million sf in 2,669 properties. The company employs more than 1,300 people worldwide.

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