San Diego Airport Is First in World to Be Certified LEED Platinum

by on May 9, 2014 · 5 comments

in Culture, Economy, Environment, History, San Diego

solar-array_SD_airport-RenderingBy Good News Network

San Diego International Airport became the first in the world to be awarded LEED Platinum — the highest environmental certification possible — for its new energy-efficient green terminal.

Sustainable features of the new terminal include a 3.3-megawatt solar array, low-flow water fixtures, drought-tolerant landscaping, energy-efficient or natural lighting, reflective roofs, storm drainage management and non-toxic interior construction materials and paints.

“Not only were we able to reduce our environmental footprint during the construction process, but we’ve constructed a new terminal that will be 32 percent more energy efficient than the standard code,” said Turner Construction operations manager Dan McGuckin.

The $907 million Green Build project, which installed ten new gates with parking, was completed $45 million under budget.

The solar panels on the terminal rooftop and parking lot will be installed under a separate contract to be completed later this year. A private investor will pay for the installation and sell the energy it produces back to the airport at a lower cost than would the local utility. The 20-year contract is a win-win deal for both Borrego Solar Systems and the Airport Authority, which expects to save 10-13% on their energy costs over the period.

In 2012, San Diego also became the first commercial airport in the US to install LEDs on its runways, guard lights, and airfield signs, lowering the airport’s electricity costs by $27,000 per month, according to Clean Technica.

(Read about more of the airport’s sustainability successes at


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

OB Dude May 9, 2014 at 1:37 pm

And somebody gives SD Airport an “award” while the planes that go in and out of this “green airport” dump fuel, exhaust and noise over the POINT???



joyce May 10, 2014 at 1:48 pm

i agree……more and more planes… the morning i sit having my coffee and it is one plane after another…..and i live south of point loma ave……there are not supposed to be planes flying over … no…no awards from me


want2surf May 12, 2014 at 11:01 am

Agreed. The take-off flight paths seem to vary further south (toward PL Ave) than previously (and lower!), seemingly at whim, but perhaps based on whether they bank south or north.
Nice terminal. Would be reassuring to hear about flight path changes that have occurred without notification… any news scoop there, Frank?


Zach Affolter May 10, 2014 at 3:20 pm

Very good point!


Yosief May 14, 2014 at 11:52 am

We have an airport transportation service. My advise from what I have experience with the new terminal is great but I have some suggestions for the airport authority. The level 2 looks great and solves the traffic issue at the terminal. If you notice the traffic around 5-8am is all on Level 2 on terminal 2 and at night all traffic is on level 1. They need to split commercial and public pickup drop-off so the traffic can flow to two diff level, how this can be accomplish I am not sure but it’s frustrating when people are using the terminal as parking and it’s hard to get in and out during busy hours. Maybe Level 2 should just be for public drop-off and pickup and Level 1 should be for commercial. For
All your airport transportation needs call


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