When the $15 million Hiawatha public works facility at 26th Street and
Hiawatha Avenue South in Minneapolis was in preliminary stages, the city
decided to make it a model for
LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.
building, which opened its doors in June 2010, recently achieved that
goal--becoming the state's first local government building to achieve
LEED Platinum status, according to city staffer Paul Miller.
the highest level of sustainable construction through the U.S. Green
Building Council's LEED certification program. The Hiawatha facility is
also the first public works building in the country to get such a high
score for going green, according to RSP Architects
, which worked on the project.
Hiawatha facility houses construction and maintenance operations
dealing with paving, sewers, streets, bridges, and sidewalks and the
engineering laboratory, according to Miller.
The site has two buildings, including the 1914-built Hiawatha facility, down from 18 original structures, according to Miller.
handful of years ago the City Council singled out the Hiawatha project
to go for LEED Gold status--to make a statement, he says. "We
established that bar before we really even got into the design."
building ended up getting Platinum status, which is a step above Gold. Achieving it involved "a lot of good pre-planning and a good architect who
shared the same goal," along with a LEED experienced contractor, he
says. "Those things came together and we got a lot more points than we
ever thought possible."
Additionally, the LEED status came at no additional expense, while the
building will now be 60 percent more efficient than it would've been otherwise, he says. "That's a huge savings in lifetime [building] costs
for the city."
Among the energy-efficient measures in place:
the building's heating and cooling happens through a geothermal pump.
Lighting controls, the stormwater management system, and a smaller building
footprint also help. But a big part of the certification has to do with how much of the
building's old materials were recycled, he says.
rubble was crushed for use as gravel base, while timber was salvaged and
reused for window and door framing. Much of the metal was repurposed,
while the fencing surrounding the site comes from the metal decking of
the old Lowry Avenue Bridge. "None of what was existing there before
left the site," he says, adding, "Obviously the city is very proud of
Source: Paul Miller, city of Minneapolis
Writer: Anna Pratt