New construction for US projects


The BREEAM New construction standards are used to assess the design, construction, intended use and future-proofing of new building developments, including the local, natural or human-created environment surrounding the building.

BREEAM International New construction, the standard used for new developments in the US, provides a framework to encourage clients and designers to strive for the most sustainable building within the constraints of the project.

Certificates can be issued at the Design Stage (noted as interim BREEAM rating based on the design) and Post-construction to confirm the final BREEAM rating for the as-built performance of the building after construction is complete.


Learn more about how BREEAM International New construction works for US projects


To find out more about BREEAM USA New construction, please call us on +14152981619 or share your contact details, and one of our experts will be in touch.

Adaptations for US projects


BREEAM International New construction provides a means of adapting section weightings to reflect the context specific to the country of assessment. There can be marked differences in environmental conditions in different countries, or even within regions of the same country and we aim to reflect that in the weightings process.


The US has been divided into 10 regions. The regions have been set after considering climate, energy use, transport availability, population density, ecology and other factors.


Each of these regions have their own environmental category weightings and approved standards which will account for the variations in standards adopted (such as the multiple versions of ASHRAE 90.1) and the regulatory baseline in place. Adopting this regional approach ensures that any BREEAM certified project exceeds regulations while still meeting international best practice.


Where weightings have not been set for a particular region in the US, BRE will work with Assessors to review and create the data set required to determine the weightings. Assessors should reach out to BRE when they have a BREEAM project in a region in which the weightings and standards have not been published.

Building types that can use BREEAM International New construction

BREEAM International New construction can be used to assess most types of new buildings, including residential and new-build extensions to existing buildings.


Building typeDescription
Office· General office buildings
· Offices with research & development areas (category 1 laboratories only)
Industrial· Warehouse storage or distribution
· Process, manufacturing or vehicle servicing
Retail· Shop or shopping center · Retail park or warehouse
· Over the counter service providers, e.g financial institutions
· Showrooms
· Restaurant, café and drinking establishments
· Hot food take-out establishments
Education· Preschools
· K-12 schools
· Community colleges
· Universities
· Other higher education
Residential Long stay· Senior/ assisted living
· Sheltered accommodation
· On campus student accommodation
· Military barracks
Residential Short stay· Hotel, hostel, boarding and guest house
· Secure training center
· Residential training center
Residential· Multifamily
· Single homes

Don’t see your project type? For new-build developments that do not fall within the scope of BREEAM International New construction, BRE offers a bespoke service.  This involves tailoring criteria in the existing standards to the developments specific use, sustainability opportunities and its location. This tailoring takes place prior to the development being fully designed and constructed to maximize the benefit of its application.  For more information regarding this process and whether it is a suitable option for your project, please read our Guidance Note BREEAM Bespoke Process.

Benefits of BREEAM New construction

The New construction standards benefit property investors, developers, owners and occupiers by:

Driving sales and rental values

Supporting routes to net zero

Contributing to ESG goals

Mitigating environmental impact

Reducing operational costs

Providing one assessment for multiple sustainability outcomes

Enhancing economic and social value

Supporting disclosures and reporting requirements

Providing independent, third-party assurance on asset performance and sustainability

Register to download the BREEAM USA New construction technical manuals

BREEAM USA case studies

BREEAM award winning energy and conservation office in California, USA

BREEAM award winning energy and conservation office in California, USA

Built in 1984 and located in Davis, CA, Rifle Range, also referred to as the Energy Conservation Office, is a ...
Read More
Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, a public garden attraction in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, a public garden attraction in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA

At Phipps, we believe that public gardens have a role to play in mitigating the challenge of climate change ...
Read More

Contact BREEAM USA to start your sustainability journey today

To contact us, please call us on +14152981619 or share your contact details and one of our experts will be in touch.