The Arvada City Council has passed a resolution to build any new city buildings to a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for New Construction Silver Standard. LEED certification provides independent, third-party verification that a building, home or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at achieving high performance in key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
The resolution states that all new City buildings over 5,000 square feet shall work to meet at a minimum the United States Green Building Council LEED BD&C-Silver certification, with a goal of achieving a LEED-BD&C Gold. In addition, all eligible facilities should achieve Energy Star status after one year of operation. The Resolution also adopts the LEED system for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance (O&M) certification as the benchmark to measure operations, improvements and maintenance. The LEED system for Existing Buildings: O&M rating system shall be applied to existing buildings seeking LEED certification.
“There are both environmental and financial benefits to earning LEED certification,” stated Jessica Prosser, Sustainability Coordinator for the City of Arvada. “And, if for any reason compliance with this resolution creates an unreasonable burden on the cost of construction or the remodel of a City building, this Resolution allows projects to be waived from the LEED standards.”
LEED-certified buildings are designed to:
• Lower operating costs and increase asset value
• Reduce waste sent to landfills
• Conserve energy and water
• Be healthier and safer for occupants
• Reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions
• Qualify for tax rebates, zoning allowances and other incentives in hundreds of cities