Campus Pointe

File Type: Free Content, Case study
Release Date: January 2010
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Campus Pointe building

Fast Facts

Address: San Diego, Calif.
Company/Developer: Veralliance Properties
Project Specs: Retrofit/Major Renovation
Project Type: Office, Lifescience
Square Feet: 450,000

Project History: In 2007, Veralliance Properties acquired Campus Pointe, a 450,000-square-foot R&D/light manufacturing building constructed in 1981. The 42-acre campus offers natural open space in the heart of University Towne Centre, a community known for its biological/pharmaceutical presences and association with University of California, San Diego. Veralliance Properties reinvented the entire campus from its steel structure into a state-of-the-art environmentally responsible workplace with a world-class design that has already proven its success by attracting the West Coast headquarters of Lilly, Covance and another major employer. The company’s ingenuity and creativity is setting new standards for design, functionality and sustainability and is in the final stages of review to become California’s first LEED certified Core and Shell facility at the Platinum level.

Commitment to Sustainability

Veralliance Properties is committed to sustainable building and development practices that reduce environmental impact and provide healthier, more inspiring work environments. With each project, we implement our Four Pillars Philosophy of livability, responsibility, productivity and artistry to create vital, dynamic workplaces that: 1) support the companies who work there through increased efficiency and employee attraction and retention; 2) enhance the quality of life and well-being of the employees through amenities, services, and environmental quality; and 3) support and add value to the communities in which they are located through thoughtful, leading edge sustainable practices and aesthetic design. Our ultimate objective is to reduce the footprint we leave behind and, when possible, make use of the existing facilities and recycled materials rather than build anew.

Green Features

Economic Analysis

  • Studies show that sustainable buildings absorb space faster, and tenants are willing to pay a premium. Both of these have proven accurate at Campus Pointe. Its lease to Lilly (125,000 square feet) and an under-negotiation lease show that LEED certification and sustainable design are important to tenants. In respect to its lease with Covance (45,000 square feet with option to expand), LEED certification and sustainable building were top-of-mind. Covance communicated that those details were major factors in its decision to lease space at Campus Pointe. Campus Pointe’s top competitor offered Covance the equivalent rental rate of $1.45 NNN, but was not able to offer a LEED certified building. Thus, Covance elected to lease at Campus Pointe at $1.90 NNN, a 31 percent premium.
  • Veralliance Properties calculates it saveed approximately 12 months of down time by providing future tenants with the premier location to lease. This reduced the period of vacancy and saved on operating expense carry and interest-reserve, which equates to a $3.3 million budget savings with respect to the project.
Campus Pointe lobby

Site Sustainability/Materials Use

  • The approach to the redevelopment of Campus Pointe was to utilize as much of the onsite materials available as possible. Sustainability efforts began with the adaptive re-use of the existing building. Rather than demolishing the building, the company re-utilized a minimum of 75 percent of the existing walls, floors and roof.
  • The metal paneling above the windows on the west side of the building were repainted and re-used rather than being replaced.
  • The projects used wood that was harvested from sustainably- managed forests (FSC-certified lumber).
  • Building materials have a high recycled content.
  • During the construction process, 84.5 percent of construction waste generated was recycled rather than sent to a landfill. Twenty percent of project building materials came from recycled materials from consumer waste such as recycled bottles and cans. An additional 10 percent were extracted and manufactured within a 500-mile radius of the project location. Renewable wood products were also utilized. The company restored 53.9 percent of the project site using native or adaptive planting.
  • Veralliance Properties coordinates with each new tenant on how to design their interior improvements to comply at a minimum of LEED Silver Certification Requirements, with a specific emphasis on energy and water conservation.
  • The company created an onsite organic vegetable and fruit garden to serve the bistro, which provides patrons with “green” food service. Fibonacci’s utilizes local seasonal herbs, vegetables and fruits grown in conjunction with its food production and preparation needs. The bistro distributes compostable utensils, plates, cups and napkins and doubles as an educational facility for local community colleges. A compost station was constructed for food and material waste.
  • The campus features immediate access to public transportation including buses and shuttle service. Bicycle storage is readily available. The company has also provided changing and shower facilities onsite. Hybrid vehicle parking is designated near the lobby to provide drivers who utilize fuel-efficient vehicles with parking close the building entrance.

Energy Efficiency

  • The company is installing a 250kW photovoltaic solar array system to generate electricity from the sun and return it to the municipal grid, at an approximate rate of eight percent kWh per hour. Although the power generated will not directly benefit Campus Pointe, it provides renewable energy for the community. Energy utilized by tenants is measured and verified through sub-metering.
  • A third-party commissioning agent completed evaluations to ensure optimal energy efficiency. Veralliance Properties purchased green power in the form of renewable energy certificates which funds the development of wind and solar power plants across the U.S. The amount of green power purchased equals approximately 70 percent of the total annual electrical requirements for Campus Pointe for a period of two years.
  • The company utilized environmentally-friendly refrigerants with the lowest ozone depletion and global warming potential. The high-performance glass curtain wall lets in daylight but keeps the heat out. Adding to the effectiveness of the curtain wall is the Veralliance-installed clerestories which also provide daylight.
  • The project uses 15.5 percent less energy than a building built to minimum energy code requirements (2005 Title 24 for California projects, the equivalent to ASRAE-90.1 - U.S. Green Building Council). The combination of energy efficiency features and renewable energy will reduce the total energy cost by 22 percent.
Campus Pointe ribbon cutting ceremony

Water Efficiency

  • Drought-tolerant landscaping was planted, reducing water consumption by 50 percent. Water used for landscaping irrigation and other outdoor uses is provided by the municipal reclaimed water system. The company implemented process water use reduction by using reclaimed water for the high volume chiller condenser water in the central plant.
  • The company installed high-efficient plumbing fixtures to reduce water consumption by more than 40 percent. Examples include low-flow urinals, faucets and shower heads and dual-flush toilets.
  • Veralliance Properties is also currently creating reusable water bottles to be distributed to tenants to reduce the purchase and use of plastic water bottles onsite.


  • Veralliance Properties implemented an innovative HVAC feature where the make-up water supply for the cooling towers (which evaporate a vast quantity of water to provide air conditioning) is sourced from a municipal reclaimed water system instead of a potable water supply. By using reclaimed water treated to secondary standards (safe for irrigation and process uses, but not to be consumed), this greatly reduced the project’s impact on the potable water system. This measure reduces potable water use by about 3.6 million gallons per year, which is more than the entire amount of water used for indoor purposes such as restrooms, showers and kitchens.
  • Onsite amenities such as a fitness center, conference center, walking and jogging trail, picnic areas and respite corridor equipped with a book-share, video games and conversation areas, creates an environment that employees want to enjoy, minimizing their travel off campus. An onsite bistro sources some of its fresh ingredients from an organic garden right outside the building and makes use of its waste through an onsite compost area.