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5 Green Buildings in 5 Major Cities: Snapshots October 12, 2007

Green buildings are increasingly becoming a part of the daily landscape in cities across the US and around the world. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is one of a few systems available for defining ‘green’ or greener buildings (Green Globes comes in a distant second in the US). LEED does not claim to be the end-all be-all but a step in the right direction (a much needed step, might I add!). According to USGBC figures from July 2007, LEED has grown to encompass over 14,000 projects in 50 US States and 30 countries since its inception in 1998.

So, in celebration of the fact that many developers and architects are adopting LEED standards, we wanted to feature a sampling of five LEED certified buildings in five cities across the country.

Bank of America Tower, One Bryant Park, New York City, New York

Date opened: Scheduled to be complete in 2008
Dimensions: 945 feet tall, 2.1 million square feet, 55 stories
LEED: Platinum
Firsts: First high-rise to reach LEED platinum certification
Unique feature: Local sourcing of many materials from within 500 miles, co-generation facility including an ice-storage system to moderate peak energy demands
For more information: Cook +Fox Architects

Flickr: hello_serjiy

David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Date opened: 2003
Dimensions: 1.5 million square feet
LEED: Gold
Firsts: First LEED convention center in North Ameria, at opening the largest green building in the world
Unique feature: Natural lighting in 75% of the exhibition space
For more information: David Lawrence Convention Center

Flickr: glindsay65

One South Dearborne, Chicago, Illinois


Date opened: 2005
Dimensions: 571 feet tall, 820,000 square feet, 40 stories
LEED Silver
Firsts: Illinois’ first pre-certified LEED building
Unique feature: Large trees in the plaza of the building are irrigated from condensation from the building’s mechanical systems
For more information: One South Dearborn

Flickr:hanneorla

601 Congress Street, Boston, Massachusetts


Date opened: 2005
Dimensions: 420,000 square feet, 14 stories
LEED: Certified
Unique features: Roof garden on stepped 12th story, energy efficient double paned glass walls
For more information: City of Boston

Flickr:cronbach

Abercorn Common, Savannah, Georgia



Date opened: 1968, LEED renovations begun 2004
Dimensions: 180,000 square feet
LEED: Silver
Firsts: First US LEED certified retail center, contains the first LEED certified McDonalds (LEED gold) anywhere
Unique feature: Porous pavement in the parking lot allowing for more natural percolation of runoff, 85% of construction debris was recycled or reused
For more information: Abercorn Common

If you’re curious about which city has the most LEED certified buildings, here is a list as of 2006.

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5 Responses to “5 Green Buildings in 5 Major Cities: Snapshots”

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