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Grand Rapids Art Museum, First LEED Gold Museum

Grand Rapids Art Museum

Grand Rapids, Michigan is one of the greenest cities in the country, at least if you go by the number of LEED certified buildings it has.  A couple of years ago, Grand Rapids was #5 on a list of cities with the most LEED certified buildings, surpassing even cities such as Chicago, San Francisco, New York, and Washington DC.  Grand Rapids also has embraced renewable energy for the city.  But Grand Rapids’ latest claim to green fame is that it is now the home to the first new construction LEED-certified art museum in the country. 

The building is a 125,000 sf structure designed by Kulapat Yantrasast of Workshop Hakomori Yantrasast (wHY Architects).  The Grand Rapids Art Museum opened just a few weeks prior to David Adjaye’s Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, which is also expecting a LEED Gold.

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Financing, LEED Certification, Sustainable Business, + Green Design [WIR]

Week in Review

*WIR = Week in Review; a Saturday showcase of excellent links.

Austin's Ronald McDonald House Going for Platinum

Pc130173

Recently, Ronald McDonald House Charities made the decision to integrate sustainable design and energy efficiency in all future facilities, whether new, expanded, or remodeled.  As you can tell with this RMHC of Austin and Central Texas, which has 30 rooms to accommodate families with ill or injured children being treated in local area hospitals, they mean business when it comes to going green.  Here, RMHC is going all the way by seeking that LEED Platinum paper.

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Economically Eco-Friendly PowerHouse

Powerhouse

PowerHouse Enterprises is persistently chasing that sweet trifecta of style, economics, and sustainability.  This house here, built in Lawrence, Massachusetts, is en route to get LEED Platinum certification.  Says Quincy Vale, founder and President of PowerHouse:  "Overall, green is good, but the things that work are health and money.  Unless homeowners save money from their investment, I'm not sure it's going to sell."  I think he's hitting it right on the head with that statement. 

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World's First LEED Platinum Home Remodel

Afterhouse

Live Green, Live Smart just received Platinum certification on one of their green home projects, The Sustainable House.  The Sustainable House is a remodeled, 1948 rambler that’s been converted to one of the greenest homes in the United States.  And they were kind enough to document all the details with a construction diary of the process and before/after photos, too (view below). 

The Sustainable House has a slew of green features that will one day be common in every abode: energy-efficient appliances, CFLs, natural Quartz countertops, Aquia dual-flush toilets, fly ash cement where used, four 130 feet closed-loop wells for geothermal energy, greywater system, super insulation, passive solar, photovoltaic panels, solar hot water system, Solatubes, and triple-glazed argon windows, to name a few.

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Greensburg Rebuilds with LEED Platinum

Greensburg Aerial

Last July, when we brought news that Leonardo DiCaprio and Discovery were going to help rebuild the tornado-torn city of Greensburg, we didn't know the city was so focused on greening its infrastructure.  Now comes news that the small Kansas town will require all city-owned buildings bigger than 4,000 sf to achieve a LEED Platinum rating from the USGBC. 

You'll note that Platinum is as high as it gets under the LEED program.  Greensburg is the first city anywhere to require such lofty standards in city buildings.  Additionally, buildings must reduce energy use 42% over current building code requirements. 

With a population of about 1500, there won't be many buildings that hit the mark, but it's a noble step in the right direction. 

Update: LEED Platinum for 547 Arts Center and Buffalo House.



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