As a real estate developer, I find it crucial to consider sustainability throughout the entire process of building. We only have one planet, and we should all work together to ensure that it is taken care of. My passion for sustainability stems from my time in Japan, when I experienced, first-hand, just how socially responsible the Japanese culture is. This drove me to incorporate sustainable solutions and technologies into my future projects.

With that being said, I believe that it is important that we draw inspiration from others so that we may perpetuate a culture of sustainable living. Here are a few of the most inspirational sustainably-designed buildings.

One Angel Square

Located in Manchester, UK, the One Angel Square building not only boasts a radical, contemporary design, it also depends on renewable energy in order to function on a daily basis. The entire building relies heavily on a Combined Heat and Power system that runs on rapeseed oil which is grown on the company’s farm land. Any excess energy is sent back to the grid and it also features a recycling program for excess rain water.

Shanghai Tower

The Shanghai Tower is not only the second-tallest building in the world, it is hoping to become one of the most sustainable structures in the world as well. At the moment, the 2,073-foot-tall building features wind turbines that power its outer lighting and parking areas; the building is also suited with inner and outer skins that allow for natural sunlight to illuminate the building’s various offices and workspaces, cutting down on the need for electricity-guzzling artificial light. The building is monitored by a smart system that helps cut down on its energy consumption. Overall, the building’s state-of-the-art sustainable solutions help cut its carbon footprint by a whopping 34,000 metric tons.

Manitoba Hydro Place

Located in Canada, the Manitoba Hydro Place’s forward-thinking sustainable technology and design have made it one of the most energy efficient buildings in all of North America. With its rooftop gardens, triple-glazed windows and geothermal cooling and heating system, Manitoba has managed to cut down its energy consumption by 60%.

These buildings and their sustainability-driven designs excite me. I want to live in a world where every building can help our planet in some way or another. This is precisely why I am incorporating several sustainability features in my newest development project, Ro2. Set to rejuvenate Phoenix’s burgeoning arts district, the Ro2 Project is exactly what the community needs: a sustainable arts complex that can not only foster the arts and the community, but do so in a green manner.