Columbia’s Wide array of certified green buildings

Columbia’s Wide array of certified green buildings
BY CBT STAFF

SEPTEMBER 3, 2010

Building owners, architects and contractors have collaborated on a variety of construction and renovation projects in the city that earned the US Green Building Council’s highest ratings.

The LEED certified buildings include a college hall, a fire house, the city hall, a schoolhouse, a bus station and a mixed-use building with lofts and offices. Several more buildings are in the process of being certified.

LEED is the Green Building Council’s standard for rating the energy and resource efficiency of new and renovated structures. It stands for Leaders in Energy and Environmental Design. Gold is the second highest rating, followed by silver and platinum.
The system has an array of metrics including energy savings, water efficiency, carbon dioxide emissions linked to the building process and indoor air quality.

The Green Building Council, a nonprofit organization, provides owners and operators a framework for identifying and implementing what it describes as practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions.
The green building movement is gaining momentum. Fast Company cited statistics from an industry research group that the US green building market value will jump from $71 billion now to $173 billion by 2015. Commercial green building is expected to grow by 18 percent annually during the same time period to $83 billion.

The trend is attributed both to a growing recognition of green building’s potential cost-savings as well as financial incentives from the government.

COLUMBIA FIRE STATION NO. 9
North Providence and Blue Ridge roads
Owner: City of Columbia
LEED Certification Level: Gold
Architect: Peckham & Wright Architects
Contractor: Little Dixie Construction Co.
Completed: 2009
Features:
Used lumber certified by the Forest Stewardship Council for the project
Recycled construction waste
Used low-VOC sealants and paints
Used recycled content for flooring and siding
Filters storm water runoff through an on-site rain garden and bio-swale

Tagged: Issue 3, Volume 17

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