Hastings Public Library recently announced that it has been awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) LEED program — the first and only public library in the state of Michigan to receive this level of certification. A ceremony to officially certify the new library was held on October 25.
The LEED Green Building Rating System™ is a feature-oriented rating system that awards buildings points for satisfying specified green building criteria. The six major environmental categories of review include: Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, Indoor Environmental Quality, and Innovation and Design. A gold certification recognizes a superior level of energy and environmental performance.
The architect of record for the project, C2AE, provided design services including architectural design, civil, mechanical, electrical and structural engineering, project management, landscape architecture, LEED certification services, and construction administration. C2AE is a full-service architectural, engineering and planning firm that serves a broad spectrum of market sectors. The Christman Company served as the construction management firm, which worked closely with C2AE and the library staff to propose systems and materials, and recommended substitutions that substantially reduced the project budget.
The 20,000-square-foot, two-story library sits on a brownfield site and anchors the east end of State Street, the city's main east-west thoroughfare. The main features include the building's character, which references downtown Hastings' 1900s-era façade character. Efficient, clean air circulation, use of sunlight indoors, and many recycled products contributed to the USGBC's award of LEED gold certification to the new building.
The Hastings Public Library demonstrates excellence in the use of sustainable practices through the roof gardens and rain garden that process water runoff from the building and parking lot to return cleaner water to the water table. Recycled and sustainable materials are used throughout the library, including carpeting, chairs, desks, and wall coverings. Furniture from the old library was refurbished and reused in several areas of the new library — particularly in the second level Michigan Room, which houses its local and state history collection — a community meeting room, and the library staff offices.
The library staff continues to promote sustainability, providing educational opportunities for the public and developing an outstanding sustainability circulating collection, including establishing October as "Sustainability Month." The last of the library's construction projects is the addition of solar panels to generate electricity that should be completed yet this year.
The USGBC is a nonprofit membership organization whose vision is a sustainable built environment within a generation. Its membership includes corporations, builders, universities, government agencies, and other nonprofit organizations. Since USGBC's founding in 1993, it has grown to more than 13,000 member companies and organizations, and offers a comprehensive family of LEED green building rating systems. USGBC provides an expansive educational offering and offers the industry's popular Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, and a network of 72 local chapters, affiliates and organizing groups. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org.