Case Studies


Using low carbon concrete

Overaa helps recommend concrete mix designs for various applications to decrease the embodied carbon in our projects.


Reducing embodied carbon in concrete

Case Study: Optimizing concrete mix designs.

Concrete is typically the biggest source of embodied carbon in our projects. Embodied carbon measurements take into account the entire lifespan of the material including its extraction, transportation, construction and disposal.

Overaa buys approximately 75,000 cubic yards of concrete annually. By proactively optimizing our concrete mix designs, we can make a significant impact on the project’s carbon footprint. Working with the structural engineer and our concrete suppliers, we customize mix designs for each application – flatwork, structural elements, architectural features, etc. Admixtures including fly ash, slag, and calcined clays in lieu of cement help reduce the amount of embodied carbon in the concrete.  

We track our annual concrete usage so we can work toward reducing our overall carbon footprint and global warming potential (GWP).

using mass timber

Overaa uses prefabricated long-span structural timber elements in lieu of steel trusses in some applications 


Material Savings with Mass Timber

Case Study: Large span structural components for energy and cost savings

21st century learning spaces call for large, open and collaborative environments. For the design-build Michelle Obama Elementary School in Richmond, Overaa used glulam and LVLs for large span project-based learning suites and for large operable walls between learning spaces. Our preconstruction team worked collaboratively to feature an exposed glulam structure in the Multi-purple room instead of costly and customized open steel truss that would require a taller building to achieve the required ceiling clearance. The end result is a building that is strategically oriented and designed with passive strategies for optimal daylighting.

100% Solar headquarters

Since 2016, Overaa has invested in renewable energy to power operations.

100% Solar Powered, Centralized Operations

Case Study: Going green

Our Richmond Headquarters – including our prefabrication yard and shop – is 100% solar powered.

In 2016, we added our first solar array to our rooftop and in 2018, we added an additional 5,852 SF carport structure equipped with solar panels. Together, the system produces approximately 194,151 KW per year of energy, enough to power our offices, shop, and prefabrication yard most days of the year. On days that this is not enough, we source our supplemental energy from MCE Solar One, a 10.5 megawatt solar farm that Overaa helped design-build in 2018.

The energy generated from Overaa’s solar system is equivalent to 137 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions avoided. This is equal to 23.9 homes’ electricity use in one year, removing 29.1 passenger vehicles from the road each year, or the carbon sequestered by 162 acres of US forest in one year.