Part I: Introduction

Chapter 1: Establishing Parameters


Rating Systems

Chapter 2: The LEED Rating System

Leed Version 3

Leed Online

Leed Registered Projects

Leed Prerequisites

Leed Certified Projects

Administrative Changes to Leed

Action Plans and Progress Reports

Chapter 3: Before You Start

Where to Begin?

Chapter 4: LEED Process

Phased Submission

The Impact of Prerequisites and Points in LEED 2009

Sustainable Sites

Water Efficiency

Energy and Atmosphere

Materials and Resources

Indoor Environmental Quality

Chapter 5: Clarify Your Services

LEED Requirements

Part II: LEED 2009 and the Contractor

Chapter 6: Sustainable Sites

SSp1: Construction Activity Pollution Prevention

SSc1: Site Selection

SSc2: Development Density and Community Connectivity

SSc3: Brownfield Redevelopment

Alternative Transportation

SSc5.1: Site Development—Protect or Restore Habitat

SSc5.2: Site Development—Maximize Open Space

SSc6.1: Stormwater Design—Quantity Control

SSc6.2: Stormwater Design—Quality Control

Heat Island Effect

SSc8: Light Pollution Reduction

Chapter 7: Water Efficiency

WEp1: Water Use Reduction

WEc1: Water Efficient Landscaping

WEc2: Innovative Wastewater Technologies

WEc3: Water Use Reduction

Chapter 8: Energy and Atmosphere

EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning of the Building Energy Systems

EAp2: Minimum Energy Performance

EAp3: Fundamental Refrigerant Management

EAc1: Optimize Energy Performance

EAc2: On-Site Renewable Energy

EAc3: Enhanced Commissioning

EAc4: Enhanced Refrigerant Management

EAc5: Measurement and Verification

EAc6: Green Power

Chapter 9: Materials and Resources

MRp1: Storage and Collection of Recyclables

Building Reuse

MRc2: Construction Waste Management

MRc3: Materials Reuse

MRc4: Recycled Content

MRc5: Regional Materials

MRc6: Rapidly Renewable Materials

MRc7: Certified Wood

Chapter 10: Indoor Environmental Quality

IEQp1: Minimum Indoor Air Quality Performance

IEQp2: Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) Control

IEQc1: Outdoor Air Delivery Monitoring

IEQc2: Increased Ventilation

IEQc3.1: Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan—During Construction

IEQc3.2: Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan—Before Occupancy

Low-Emitting Materials

IEQc4.1: Low-Emitting Materials—Adhesives and Sealants

IEQc4.2: Low-Emitting Materials—Paints and Coatings

IEQc4.3: Low-Emitting Materials—Flooring Systems

IEQc4.4: Low-Emitting Materials—Composite Wood and Agrifiber Products

IEQc5: Indoor Chemical and Pollutant Source Control

IEQc6.1: Controllability of Systems—Lighting

IEQc6.2: Controllability of Systems—Thermal Comfort

IEQc7.1: Thermal Comfort—Design

IEQc7.2: Thermal Comfort—Verification

IEQc8.1: Daylight and Views—Daylight

IEQc8.2: Daylight and Views—Views

Chapter 11: Innovation in Design

IDc1: Innovation in Design

IDc2: LEED Accredited Professional

Chapter 12: Regional Priority

RPc1: Regional Priority

Part III: Case Studies

Chapter 13: Case Studies

Project 1: William A. Kerr Foundation Office

Project 2

Project 3

Project 4

Project 5

Project 6

Project 7

Project 8

Project 9: Benedictine Women of Madison

Project 10

Project 11

Project 12: Alberici Headquarters

Project 13

Project 14





For these and other Wiley books on sustainable design, visit

Alternative Construction: Contemporary Natural Building Methods by Lynne Elizabeth and Cassandra Adams

Biophilic Design: The Theory, Science, and Practice of Bringing Buildings to Life by Stephen Kellert, Judith Heerwagen, and Martin Mador

Contractor’s Guide to Green Building Construction: Management, Project Delivery, Documentation, and Risk Reduction by Thomas E. Glavinich and Associated General Contractors

Design with Nature by Ian L. McHarg

Ecodesign: A Manual for Ecological Design by Ken Yeang

Environmentally Responsible Design: Green and Sustainable Design for Interior Designers by Louise Jones

Green BIM: Successful Sustainable Design with Building Information Modeling by Eddy Krygiel and Brad Nies

Green Building Materials: A Guide to Product Selection and Specification, Second Edition> by Ross Spiegel and Dru Meadows

Green Development: Integrating Ecology and Real Estate by Rocky Mountain Institute

Green Roof Systems: A Guide to the Planning, Design, and Construction of Landscapes Over Structure by Susan Weiler and Katrin Scholz-Barth

The HOK Guidebook to Sustainable Design, Second Edition by Sandra Mendler, William O’Dell, and Mary Ann Lazarus

The Integrative Design Guide to Green Building: Redefining the Practice of Sustainability by 7group and Bill Reed

Land and Natural Development (Land) Code by Diana Balmori and Gaboury Benoit

A Legal Guide to Urban and Sustainable Development for Planners, Developers, and Architects by Daniel Slone, Doris S. Goldstein, and W. Andrew Gowder

Materials for Sustainable Sites: A Complete Guide to the Evaluation, Selection, and Use of Sustainable Construction Materials by Meg Calkins

Modern Sustainable Residential Design: A Guide for Design Professionals by William J. Carpenter

Packaging Sustainability: Tools, Systems, and Strategies for Innovative Package Design by Wendy Jedlicka

Sustainable Commercial Interiors by Penny Bonda and Katie Sosnowchik

Sustainable Construction: Green Building Design and Delivery by Charles J. Kibert

Sustainable Design: Ecology, Architecture, and Planning by Daniel Williams

Sustainable Design of Research Laboratories: Planning, Design, and Operation by KlingStubbins

Sustainable Healthcare Architecture by Robin Guenther and Gail Vittori

Sustainable Residential Interiors by Associates III

Sustainable Site Design: Criteria, Process, and Case Studies for Integrating Site and Region in Landscape Design by Claudia Dinep, Kristin Schwab

Sustainable Urbanism by Douglas Farr


Environmental Benefits Statement

This book is printed with soy-based inks on presses with VOC levels that are lower than the standard for the printing industry. The paper, Rolland Enviro 100, is manufactured by Cascades Fine Papers Group and is made from 100 percent post-consumer, de-inked fiber, without chlorine. According to the manufacturer, the use of every ton of Rolland Enviro100 Book paper, switched from virgin paper, helps the environment in the following ways:





Establishing Parameters

Before beginning a discussion about sustainable design and construction, we must narrow the scope of the conversation. While assembling the information for this book, the contributors collectively agreed that before a discussion of estimating and preconstruction of a sustainable or “green” project can proceed, several parameters must be defined, as each project is unique. Some owners use a prototype building model that has been proven time and time again, an experience that allows them to use a “cookie cutter” approach when delivering subsequent buildings. The contractors working on these projects will agree that the building components, materials and assemblies may be the same, but each project will have different constraints. Issues regarding requirements of the local municipality, seasonal effect on scheduled activities, availability of manpower, and possibly different subcontractors all can make each “cookie cutter” project distinctive.

For this reason, the contributors of this book feel it is necessary to establish a framework in which the discussions and examples are provided. It is the intent of the contributors to share information regarding the processes used to plan, estimate and execute a sustainable project. We have included case studies of projects that represent a cross-section of building types. These projects represent different geographical locations and levels of certification under the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Green Building Rating System. Our experience indicates that the problems, risks, and lack of understanding on projects are essentially the same regardless of what rating system is being used on a project. As LEED is the most widely used rating system in the United States, we have chosen to focus on projects delivered under the various LEED rating systems. We have also included examples to illustrate the impact that LEED requirements have on contractors. We include examples of extreme events that have impacted contractors in the past. It should not be inferred that these situations are the norm; rather they are provided to inform contractors of the potential effects that sustainable projects can have.

We want the reader to understand that there are several things that will influence the outcome of a LEED project, and in particular this information is intended to help contractors understand the LEED 2009 for New Construction rating system. Those of us in the construction industry know that no two projects are the same. The information in this book can be applied as one possible way, but not the only way, of estimating and producing a preconstruction plan for a project seeking LEED certification.


Green building is a relatively new wave in the construction industry that has brought many new terms and phrases: green, green buildings, sustainable buildings, high-performance buildings, integrated design, zero net energy, integrated delivery, living buildings, regenerative design, and the list goes on. What do all of these terms mean? This may be the most difficult question to answer because these terms have different definitions depending on whom you ask. Often you will see these phrases used to define one another, and still others in the industry will mix and match these phrases as the way to explain a design or a building. Consider these passages, for example:

A green building, also known as a sustainable building, is a structure that is designed, built, renovated, operated, or reused in an ecological and resource-efficient manner. Green buildings are designed to meet certain objectives such as protecting occupant health; improving employee productivity; using energy, water, and other resources more efficiently; and reducing the overall impact to the environment.

California Integrated Waste Management Board

Most people would agree that a green building must be an energy efficient building.


In the first example the terms “green building” and “sustainable building” are used to explain each other. In both examples, the definitions equate these buildings to the efficient use of various resources. The first example leads a reader to believe that the construction of a green/sustainable building results in less environmental impact while protecting the health of the building occupants, while the second focuses mainly on energy efficiency. The prevalence of definitions illustrates why there is so much confusion about green building. We will not attempt to debate the pros and cons of the multitude of definitions of green buildings. Instead we will set our first parameter: for the purposes of this book, we will define a “green” or “sustainable” building as one that has used the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Green Building Rating System.


There are a variety of green building rating systems. Depending on what statistic is used, there are as many as 100 different programs worldwide and even more if you include guidelines and protocols in addition to the complete ratings systems. In the United States, the LEED rating systems are used as well as the Green Building Initiative’s Green Globes self-assessment and certification tool. There also are strong local programs such as the Austin Energy Commercial Green Building Program and Rating Tool, the State of Minnesota Sustainable Building Guidelines (Version 2.1), and the New York City Department of Design and Construction’s High Performance Building Guidelines. For residential construction, the USGBC offers LEED for Homes, the National Association of Home Builders has a National Green Building Standard, and there are many local programs such as the Atlanta-based program EarthCraft House. LEED and Green Globes both have their roots in international programs such as Go Green and the BRE Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM). Teams that are new to the green building industry can quickly become confused when looking for the best or most applicable rating system for their projects. The LEED rating system, which is nearly ubiquitous in the U.S. market and is used internationally, will be the focus of this book.

LEED was developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). Founded in 1993, USGBC’s stated mission is “to transform the way buildings and communities are designed, built, and operated, enabling an environmentally and socially responsible, healthy and prosperous environment that improves the quality of life.” LEED is a point-based system made up of prerequisites and voluntary credits. These prerequisites and points are distributed in seven distinct categories addressing:

1. Site issues: Sustainable Sites (SS)

2. Water conservation: Water Efficiency (WE)

3. Energy conservation: Energy and Atmosphere (EA)

4. Building materials and products: Material and Resources (MR)

5. Occupant comfort and health: Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ)

6. Innovation: Innovation in Design (ID)

7. Regionalism: Regional Priority (RP)

The LEED 2009 for New Construction system contains eight prerequisites necessary for any level of certification. Projects must then achieve enough voluntary credits to be awarded one of four possible levels of certification: Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum.

USGBC has stated that the LEED rating system was created to provide third-party verification that a building or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance across all the metrics that matter most: energy savings, water efficiency, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.

Since the time of the initial launch of LEED-NC, USGBC has expanded the LEED rating system into a suite of products:

LEED-NC New Construction and Major Renovation
LEED-CI Commercial Interiors
LEED-CS Core and Shell
LEED-EB Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance
LEED-Homes Homes and low-rise residential structures
LEED-ND Neighborhood Development
LEED-Schools Educational buildings designed for kindergarten through twelfth grade

The latest iteration of the LEED program, LEED Version 3, made several changes to the administrative process and standardized the point scale across all rating systems to 100 base points with a total of 10 additional points available in the optional Innovation in Design and Regional Priority categories. Each of the systems remains unique to a particular building type or function. The newest version of the rating systems is called LEED 2009. The variety of LEED rating systems provides our second parameter: we will focus this book on the LEED 2009 for New Construction rating system. We will not examine detailed information regarding the other rating systems within the suite of LEED products. There may be times when examples within this work draw upon a project team’s experience working on LEED projects other than LEED-NC. We have included those examples to illustrate common issues a contractor may face while working on a project seeking LEED certification.