Beautiful Eco-Friendly Buildings
Eco-friendly buildings are the buzz in the world of sustainable energy. Architects are becoming one with certification programs such as LEED, which offers tools for those within the green building industry. LEED, an acronym for Leadership in Energy in Environmental Design, sets a standard for improving energy usage and lowering the carbon imprint, as well for innovation and design.
Born of these guidelines, some buildings rose above the rest, falling into the highest levels of green achievement.
William J. Clinton Presidential Library – Little Rock
Receiving a platinum certification, the highest level of recognition from LEED, The Clinton Library increased its previous recycling capacities, and began using the roof top garden for rainforest harvesting and indoor climate regulation. The increased recycling capacities were accomplished by utilizing recycled paper, metal and glass products, as well as the usage of eco-friendly light bulbs.
On a daily basis environmentally friendly cleaning products, and low VOC content maintenance products are used. The Clinton Foundation implemented several initiatives for water savings and energy conservation in the Clinton Library park grounds.
Bank of America, New York
One strong consideration for the B of A building was the design/development of the superior ventilation system resulting in a reduction of airborne contaminants. It is estimated that this alone will result in 10% to 15% productivity gains, as it lessens time lost to employee illness due to indoor air pollution.
Although not a favorite with PETA, the lobby walls are lined with recycled leather hides, floors are bamboo finished, and various additional recycled amenities add to the ambiance. The heart of the building is, of course, behind the scenes with heating coming from a gas fired turbine and air condition receiving a boost from massive amounts of on-site produced ice.
In addition, a feature that collects rainwater and collects potable water is in place, saving over ten million gallons of fresh water per year. Solar panels are standard fare, and add to the high standards this building set for sustainable commercial construction.Continued on the next page