San Francisco International Airport (SFO)’s Harvey Milk Terminal 1 has become the first airport terminal in the world to earn LEED v4 Platinum certification.

LEED v4, from the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) programme developed by the US Green Building Council, looks at the design, construction, and operation of high-performance structures. SFO earned v4 certification for Boarding Area B in Harvey Milk Terminal 1, which includes the 25-gate concourse, post-security concession space, and integrated connector to the US Customs Federal Inspection Area.

“We are truly proud to be the first airport in the world to earn LEED v4 Platinum certification,” said airport director Ivar C Satero. “This achievement continues a tradition of leadership in sustainable facilities that includes the first LEED Gold airport terminal in the United States, and the world’s first zero net energy facility at an airport. My thanks go out to the entire project team for continuing to push the envelope for what airports can accomplish to support our environmental goals.”

According to SFO, sustainable design and construction measures were prioritised at every stage of the project, resulting in the implementation of many sustainable practices. Highlights include self-energising (regenerative) elevators that recycle energy rather than wasting it as heat; radiant heating and cooling to complement displacement ventilation to provide energy efficiency, improved indoor air quality and enhanced passenger comfort; and controllable, dimmable, long-life LED fixtures. Terminal 1 also features roof-mounted photovoltaic panels and furnishings with low-volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions.

In 2011, SFO became the first airport in the US to achieve LEED Gold certification for an airport terminal, with the certification of Terminal 2.