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Saturday, 15 March 2003
Moore, Packard, Hewlett Foundations Choose FSC Wood

With sustainability firmly in mind, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation have all chosen FSC-certified wood for major office projects. As in many other projects embracing green building principles, FSC was a key element of the offices’ construction and interior design.


For its renovation of space at The Presidio in San Francisco, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation chose two strong allies—the Gensler architecture firm, and the Bay-area based VIDA company, which produces FSC-certified office furniture and veneer using a green method of processing.

VIDA built 100 workstations for the Moore Foundation offices as well as a conference table and specialty tables. A host of FSC-certified companies were behind the project: the substrate was certified particleboard from The Collins Companies; the veneer and lumber logs, certified rift red oak, came from Kane Hardwood, sliced by the Freeman Corporation.

“Obviously, as a foundation that focuses on promoting environmental sustainability we felt strongly about using green materials within our own headquarters," states the Gordon and Betty Moore foundation’s website, which has a page dedicated to its environmentally responsible headquarters renovation. “This was a great project. We all learned so much about FSC certified wood and other green materials," said Sherry Bartolucci, Chief Administrative Officer for the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation’s recent renovation of their offices in Los Altos, California is not only a beautiful and well-planned project, it is also an ideal example of good documentation of the use of certified wood.

The Packard Foundation has a deep commitment to the sound, long-term management of working forests. A primary goal in remodeling their offices was to “practice what they preach." The Foundation, Hawley, Peterson, and Snyder Architects and Blach Construction Company worked as a team to make the project as environmentally sustainable as possible. They were so successful in their efforts that the project was awarded the Associated General Contractors of California 2000 'Constructor’ award in the category of Innovation in Materials and Building Techniques for exemplary achievement in the use of sustainable materials and building practices.

One of the reasons they achieved this recognition was due to their use of wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in many elements of their new space. Specific elements using certified wood included redwood siding, trellising and exterior trim; oak partitions, furniture, casework veneers, interior trim, base, chairs, and conference tables; basswood window blinds; and a unique hemlock ceiling system.

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation sought to demonstrate a greater level of commitment to FSC certified wood than is required under the LEED standard. The Foundation was strongly committed to the use of certified wood products throughout the project, and achieved a total of 80% for wood based products from a certified source. FSC certified wood was specified for rough framing, roof framing, form work, finish carpentry, exterior siding, landscape seating, bollards, toilet partitions, doors, millwork, office furniture, workstations, and conference tables.

A broad spectrum of building and furniture subcontractors, vendors and material suppliers were required to meet the FSC’s standards for certification and documentation. Hayward Lumber, Kane Hardwood, the Freeman Corporation, and EarthSource were all called upon. All involved put forth an extraordinary effort to meet the Hewlett Foundation’s specifications and are far better prepared to offer their services and or products to the next client requiring certified material.

According to Jo Carol Conover, Project Manager for the Hewlett Foundation building, “The Hewlett Foundation is strongly committed to environmental and conservation efforts. Requiring the responsible use of natural resources, including wood based products, reflects their values."