San Diego International Airport’s “The Green Build” Expansion project, the largest improvement project in the facility’s 86-year history, was opened on August 13, 2013. “The Green Build” was orchestrated with the airport’s current and future demand for travel in mind and was designed with environmental sustainability as its focus. In May 2014, the terminal was the first commercial airport terminal to earn Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) platinum certification. Similarly, the “land side” of the project, which features a dual-level roadway, earned the LEED gold certification.
San Diego’s project incorporated natural lighting, installation of low-flow water features, installation of drought-tolerant landscaping, a solar panel system, and incorporation of electric car charging stations. The airport’s new storm water drain system removes approximately 80 percent of petroleum-based products and other onsite pollutants found on taxiways, thereby preventing them from entering the San Diego Bay. The project, which cost $1 billion, was completed on time and under budget. It created 1,000 jobs at peak construction.