Texas 2010 Rank: No. 9
Green Rank: No. 11

Hensel Phelps Construction Co. of Austin has incorporated sustainable principles and environmentally responsible practices in all aspects of the company’s administration and construction operations.

Dell Pediatric Research Institute.
Photo: Hensel Phelps
Dell Pediatric Research Institute.

Being a frequent design-builder offers the company an opportunity from project inception to contribute green ideas and suggestions and evaluate different elements’ first-cost and lifecycle cost.

“The key is establishing the strategy about how you will achieve your credits at schematic design, and the only way a contractor is involved in that is if it is a design-build project,” says Hobie Horton, Hensel Phelps project manager for the Dell Pediatric Research Institute at the University of Texas at Austin, which recently earned LEED-gold certification.

Hensel Phelps worked with architects HOK of Houston to identify innovation credits at the research institute, such as incorporating informational signage, to achieve the high rating. The $68-million, 150,000-sq-ft facility includes a 25,000-sq-ft vivarium and 50,000-sq-ft of open and central core laboratory space.