Bullitt Center Makes a Dent In Sustainability’s Future

by Martha Tesema

The Bullitt Foundation is a prime example of another community group that, like SSF, has taken ahold of the sustainability reigns and become a pioneer in it’s own right. In April 2013, the non-profit focused on promoting awareness of environmental issues, opened the doors to the Bullitt Center in Capitol Hill.

The 6-floor development calls itself the “greenest commercial building in the world” with projections to meet the Living Building Challenge, a feat that has not been accomplished on a large scale.

Brad Kahn, spokesperson for the Foundation, sees this feat as a light of hope for a completely sustainable Seattle. “Everything is impossible until it’s done.” said Kahn. “We hope the Bullitt Center represents a big step forward, and that in a few years others will have gone farther. It’s no longer impossible.”BullittCenter_GrandOpening_big

The conscious effort for green doesn’t stop at the structure, but includes the future occupants of the center. “You must sign a lease that includes a water budget and an energy budget,” said Kahn. “This naturally selects for people and organizations that support the goals of the project.”

While it may take years for the buildings of the city to have net zero energy, zero water, and be made of 100% local resources, it doesn’t take much for individuals to embrace sustainability. The first steps to change, both Luke and Kahn agree, are small.

“Sustainability is a path, not a destination,” said Kahn. “People should think about what they consume….given the consumer focus of our society, these are the big opportunities for people to have an impact in their daily lives.”

This is the sixth installment in a series regarding the sustainable culture in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood

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