The Breathe Building


Innovation and Sustainability Oregon Interiors

The Breathe Building of Portland, Oregon was designed to be the most sustainable wellness and community centre in the United States. The Breathe Building is the first commercial building in the North West built to the Earth Advantage Silver Certification, a third-party green building standard that stresses the importance of sustainable products and a building’s impact on the environment and its community. The building was designed with an emphasis on occupant comfort, energy and water efficiency, indoor air quality (IAQ), and use of recycled and responsible material. Accordingly the materials were vetted to identify and avoid potential toxins and utilize local manufacturers, suppliers and contractors. AirRenew Drywall, the only drywall that actively removes formaldehyde, was an approved product and installed throughout the building due to its Declare Label and close plant proximity.

Key Achievements

  • Performance well beyond codes and regulatory requirement, with third party certification Earth Advantage Silver Certification
  • CertainTeed team worked with the contractor to ensure products were red list compliant
  • Construction materials were recycled, donated or reused whenever possible
  • The locations of our surrounding plants helped meet the requirements for locally sourced material
  • The construction of the building was a community project. Over 2000 volunteer hours were donated throughout construction
  • Ongoing community education: Plaques throughout building reference sustainable building materials
  • Project completed on time

Key Challenges

  • In order to meet stringent environmental requirements, materials used in the building could not contain any material listed on the material red list. The products that contractors typically used which contained such materials needed to be switched to match stringent requirements. AirRenew drywall was an approved product due to its Declare label and close plant proximity. The formaldehyde scavenging ability allowed for the use of AirRenew as well as our other products. CertainTeed Technical Services wrote a letter outlining the materials in GlasRoc Sheathing for its approval.
  • The tight deadline had to be met which required many trades to work together at the same time.


Building owner: Breathe Building
Architect: Green Hammer
Main contractor: Green Hammer
Photographer: Sally Painter
Saint-Gobain Team: Erica Lange


Oregon Interiors

Oregon Interiors, based in Portland Oregon, specializes in interior applications such as drywall, steel stud framing, insulation and acoustical grid ceilings. Since their inception in 2000, Oregon Interiors has built their business around the belief that their clients' needs are the most important and they have been dedicated to providing the Pacific Northwest with high quality and professional construction services.