Sara Bayer is Our New Director of Sustainability
We are very excited to announce that our Sara Bayer will add Director of Sustainability to her title. Sara is one of our Senior Associates, a LEED Accredited Professional, a Certified Passive House Consultant, and is a project manager for many successful sustainable projects here at MAP. Her expertise will help us provide our clients with the best, most cost-effective sustainability and resiliency solutions.
We sat down with Sara to ask just a few questions about her new role.
We’ve never had a Director of Sustainability before, what changes now that we do?
Sara: Really, it’s just an increased capacity on our end. We’ll have someone officially dedicated to the swiftly emerging technologies in this field and shifting energy requirements; someone who can raise our collective understanding internally and help us be a better resource to our clients.
Does that mean you’re going to ask everyone to put solar panels on their buildings?
Sara: No. While solar is great, most often cost effective, and adds resiliency, there are so many other sustainability measures to evaluate as well. And each option should be considered carefully depending on the project. They may not be as conspicuous as solar or sunshades, but they are incredibly important and can help developers and building owners achieve substantial cost savings as well as improve the long-term durability of the building, and quality of life for the residents.
Can you give an example?
Sara: Well, for instance, your building is going to have a heating/cooling system, it’s going to have insulation and windows and ventilation, and slight adjustments to how these systems are deployed can yield large benefits. These are choices you’re going to make for your project anyway, and we’ll be there to help you navigate that very complex landscape of energy ratings and performance. We are constantly evaluating how great design features can be simply and affordably constructed, and this most certainly applies to any sustainability measure as well.
So, there’s a value-add for our clients, but what does this mean for MAP?
Sara: Definitely more resources for our staff, including continuing education opportunities in our office with outside experts. We’ll also keep working to foster and strengthen our culture of open collaboration internally. Energy regulations are going to continue to become more stringent. As the effects of climate change increase, sustainability and resiliency will take on even more urgency. Plus, with high land prices and development costs in our area, builders will continue to look for savings in their projects. One place to find them is through increased efficiency in operations, as well as in construction. Having a Director of Sustainability who can be focused on all the key issues and new ideas and who can share knowledge with our staff means that our firm will be well-positioned to deal with challenges ahead.