Barnes Foundation's new Philadelphia campus receives LEED Platinum

September 27, 2012

A new addition to the real estate market in Philadelphia made the city a little more green, as the Barnes Foundation's new campus in the metropolis was awarded the highest level of certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).

According to a release from the organization, Rick Fedrizzi, the president and chief executive officer of the USGBC, was on hand to award the new Barnes campus in Philadelphia with the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum award.

"The USGBC Green Building Council is excited to award the Barnes its LEED Platinum certification because we believe that inspired, beautiful design can also perform to high environmental standards, and this building proves it," said Fedrizzi. "From diverting 95 percent of construction waste from landfills as it redeveloped this brownfield site to a building with anticipated energy savings of 44 percent over a traditionally designed equivalent, it's a marquee project not only for Philadelphia but the country."

The occasion was also graced by the mayor of the city, and a number of other notables, as the opening ceremony was held in grand fashion to celebrate the accomplishments associated with the building project.

"The Barnes Foundation's new building is a wonderful addition to Philadelphia's iconic Parkway, not only for the benefits it brings to Philadelphia and the larger community, but for its attention to environmental design standards," said Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter. It's a project that shows that Philadelphia is a city that cares deeply about the arts and sustainability."

The New York Times reported that the project will also have a vegetated roof, wood flooring – reclaimed from Coney Island's boardwalk – and a system that will help to drastically cut water consumption in the facility.

The energy use at the new site will be drastically reduced, water and other materials will be recycled in a much more efficient manner and a number of new plantings will help to revitalize the area. The organization also wanted the building to serve as an example for other institutions, noting that these upgrades are beneficial to the entire city.

This type of sentiment is what the U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored Energy Efficient Buildings Hub (EEB Hub) is trying to foster within Philadelphia. This initiative is looking to transform the commercial real estate sector in the city into a much more sustainable and green industry.