Skanska USA Furthers Longstanding Commitment to Sustainability Becoming National Fitwel Champion

Leading global development and construction firm will scale the high-impact building certification focused on human health and wellness across its portfolio of U.S. developments

New York, Sept. 23, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Skanska USA, a leading global development and construction firm, is proud to announce today that it has joined the Fitwel Champion Network. Fitwel is the world’s leading certification system for optimizing building design and operations to support human health and well-being, and was created by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. General Services Administration, with the Center for Active Design. Fitwel Champions are committed to implementing the Fitwel Standard across their real estate portfolio, with only two dozen companies globally currently part of the program.

All of Skanska’s developments – office, multi-family, and mixed-use – aim to achieve a minimum of LEED® Gold certification, with many achieving LEED Platinum. In addition to achieving the highest possible LEED certification, the company’s supplementary application of Fitwel at scale represents its dedication to developing and constructing buildings to their highest potential to create optimal environments for tenants and residents.

“Sustainability is woven into Skanska’s DNA and becoming a Fitwel Champion is the next step in that journey. As we develop high-quality, energy-efficient buildings, it is vital that we provide environments that empower the people living and working within them to be productive and healthy,” said Robert Ward, President & CEO of Skanska USA Commercial Development. “We are pleased to join the community of other real estate leaders in the Fitwel Champion Network, and look forward to collaborating with all involved in our developments to pursue opportunities that enhance health and wellness.”

Skanska’s designation furthers its longstanding commitment to sustainability – that is integrated into each stage of its development process – from land acquisition to operations. The company’s triple bottom line approach to sustainability encompasses a focus on environmental factors, like carbon, water, air and waste; community and social impacts; and tenant health and wellness.

The specific Fitwel criteria incorporated into Skanska’s building design and operations vary and are tailored to the unique features of each building and the surrounding community. They include, but are not limited to:

  • selecting sites that are optimally located for walkability and access to public transit, and promoting and enhancing those connections through design and operations;
  • incorporating stairs into building design and constructing in a way that is more visible and inviting, encouraging use;
  • access to diverse indoor and outdoor fitness opportunities including onsite fitness or proximate walk, run, or bike trails – and providing top-notch bike storage and shower facilities;
  • enhancing access to healthy food at retailers in buildings and at neighborhood restaurants and markets;
  • and, creating workspaces with abundant daylight, views of nature, fresh outdoor air and access to active workstations.

“As developers and builders, we are responsible for ensuring that the hundreds of people that work, live and visit the buildings we create are provided with environments in which they can be successful,” said Sarah King, Skanska USA Commercial Development’s national director of sustainability. “There are immediate, tangible and visible impacts on occupants when a more structured, holistic approach to human health and wellness is considered so Fitwel should be more than prioritized.”  

“As a Fitwel Champion, Skanska is joining pioneering companies leading the way in global excellence by prioritizing human health,” said Joanna Frank, President & CEO of the Center for Active Design. “Their expansive portfolio will leverage the full suite of Fitwel products to advance evidence-based, health-promoting strategies across commercial and residential projects, in both new and existing buildings.”

Skanska is currently pursuing Fitwel certification at six developments with plans to add additional projects to the list. Current developments pursuing the certification include: 2112 PENN, a 230,000 square foot office building with nearly 10,000 square feet of retail in Washington, DC; the Bank of America Tower, a 754,000 square foot office building with more than 35,000 square feet of engaging public space at Understory – an inviting, open-air community hub that reinvents the Houston, TX tunnel system; a 12,000 square foot buildout of Skanska’s office interior in Los Angeles, CA; Two Drydock, a 13-story, 230,000-square-foot, Class-A office building in Boston, MA; Scotts Run, a 28 story, 483,000 square foot multifamily development in McLean, VA; and 2200 Block, a 30 story, 323 unit multifamily development in Seattle, WA.

For further information please contact:

Christopher Westley, Skanska, 917.438.4582,

Riva Cheses, Solomon McCown, 617.933.5276,

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About Skanska USA

Skanska is one of the world’s leading construction and development companies. In the U.S., Skanska’s core operations include building construction, civil infrastructure and developing self-financed commercial properties, which together generated $8 billion in revenue in 2018. As a developer in the U.S., Skanska has invested a total of $2.3 billion in commercial and multi-family projects. With U.S. headquarters in New York City, Skanska has offices in 28 metro areas with 9,000 employees nationwide. Skanska is an industry-leading innovator in both safety and project execution, and offers competitive solutions for both traditional and complex assignments to help build a more sustainable future for our customers and communities. Global revenue of parent company Skanska AB, headquartered in Stockholm and listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange, totaled approximately $20 billion in 2018. 

About Fitwel and the Center for Active Design

Named one of Fast Company's 2017 Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Social Good, Fitwel is the world's leading certification system that optimizes buildings to support health. Generated by expert analysis of over 5,000 academic research studies, Fitwel is implementing a vision for a healthier future where all buildings and communities are enhanced to strengthen health and wellbeing. Since 2017, Fitwel has impacted 663,000+ individuals through 240+ certified and pending projects, with 2,300 global users. Fitwel was created by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. General Services Administration, with the Center for Active Design, a global not-for-profit organization selected as the licensed operator of Fitwel in 2016, with the mandate to expand Fitwel globally to the private sector.


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