Sustainability in construction is a concept that can be accepted into a project to various extents.  In addition, the sustainability of a building can only be taken as far as the site and surround area allow.  This means a building can have all of the right energy efficient systems, building envelopes, and green materials but still may not provide a sustainable lifestyle or community to the people living, working, or visiting these buildings. 

This is where AECOM makes a difference in the sustainable construction industry.  This international corporation has a design and planning division that completes urban renewal and revitalization projects all over the world.  This division of the company was initiated in 2005 when AECOM’s program and construction management capabilities merged with the planning expertise of EDAW.  Recently, their focus on sustainability has landed them the job of creating Legacy Masterplan Framework in East London for the 2012 Olympic Games. 

Their responsibilities include designing an urban renewal plan that will support a sustainable infrastructure for the buildings in the Lower Leah Valley of London.  The plan for a legacy of the Olympics includes planning that extends years beyond the games to turn the land into a sustainable and economically revitalized community. 

AECOM expects their masterplan will deliver a final product or end result by 2040.  Perhaps this is the epitome of sustainability, when a project goes to the extent of rebuilding a five boroughs using interdisciplinary collaboration of several teams focusing on sustainability.

Other AECOM planning projects include developing solutions for infrastructure deficiencies, economic regeneration projects, and renewing city centers to meet cultural needs.  All of these projects require multidisciplinary teams and decades of scheduled work.  AECOM assesses the sustainable return on investment when designing a plan and sees that it is achieved with the final product.