Malcolm X College has received the US Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design’s (LEED) Gold certification, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and City Colleges said in a news release, observing that Chicago “is a national leader in LEED buildings, with more than 115 public buildings earning this certification.”
“Malcolm X College’s LEED Gold certification is yet another example of the city’s commitment to building a 21st century economy and fostering opportunities to make sustainability part of the Chicago experience,” Emanuel said in the statement. “Chicago is a global clean energy leader, and will continue to make strides in establishing new norms by powering our public buildings with clean energy.”
Reasons for the LEED Gold certification included:
- Locating the building within a quarter mile of public transportation;
- Utilizing construction materials made of recycled products;
- Constructing “green”(planted) roofs Implementing a rainwater harvesting system (used for irrigation); and
- Using lighting control systems that regulate the use of artificial light.
“Making sure the campus was sustainable and energy efficient were top priorities in construction of the college and this rating reflects that commitment,” said Malcolm X College interim president David Sanders.
The college was designed by minority-owned architectural firm Moody Nolan (MN). “City Colleges’ aspiration to develop a healthy, sustainable academic environment was clear to us from the start, and we’re thrilled to see them get acknowledged and proud to share in this accomplishment,” said MN partner Renauld Mitchell. “Their ethos fully aligned with our firm’s ongoing commitment to socially/environmentally-conscious design.”
According to a 2017 National Green Building Adoption Index published by CBRE Group Inc. and Maastricht University, Chicago is the national leader in energy efficient office buildings. The city increased its percentage of green office space square footage by 6.5 percent in the last year, growing LEED or Energy Star certified city office buildings to 66 percent.
In addition to progress made with commercial buildings, the City of Chicago, together with the Public Building Commission and its sister agencies, has achieved LEED certification on more than 115 municipally-owned facilities, making Chicago the city with the most LEED-certified municipal buildings in the country. The city met Mayor Emanuel’s 2011 goal of doubling number of LEED certified municipal buildings in 2014, the announcement said.