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LEED – LEADERSHIP IN ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN

Since the initiation of the Medical Pavilion at Howard County medical center project in 2003, the planning committee’s goal was to build an environmentally friendly green building. The committee believes the green building concept adds to the health and overall well-being of our staff and patients.

The Medical Pavilion at Howard County has attained the LEED Silver Level certification.  This distinction is awarded by theU.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) to recognize the world’s “greenest,” most energy efficient, high-performing buildings.  We are among the select first buildings in Howard County to achieve this distinction, and have been recognized by the Maryland Chapter of the USCBG for “Pioneering Sustainability in a Medical Facility.”

What does LEED mean for MPHC physicians, specialists and visitors?

• Preferred Parking – For those who drive energy efficient vehicles, specially designated spaces are located near the front entrance of the medical center.

• Energy consumption – High-efficiency lighting fixtures, daylight controls, and motion sensors reduce lighting and HVAC energy.  A white roof reflects heat, meaning we use less energy to cool the building.

• Water conservation – Dual flush toilets, and low flow water fixtures save 30% water on indoor usage, while a drought tolerant landscape design

• Air quality – Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the campus of the MPHC.

• Recycling – Containers are conveniently located within each suite and public areas to encourage recycling and raise awareness of waste reduction efforts.  Our recycle rate is more than 50%.

• Housekeeping services – A sustainable purchasing program ensures all cleaning products and materials meet “green” standards for building maintenance.

LEED is an internationally recognized certification system that measures how well a building or community performs across all the metrics that matter most:  energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.

LEED is a certification program that promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in key areas:

 sustainable sites

Sustainable Sites

Choosing a building’s site and managing that site during construction are important considerations for a project’s sustainability.  The Sustainable Sites category discourages development on previously undeveloped land; minimizes a building’s impact on ecosystems and waterways; encourages regionally appropriate landscaping; rewards smart transportation choices; controls storm water runoff; and reduces erosion, light pollution, heat island effect and construction-related pollution.Water use for all site irrigation at the MPHC was cut by 75% through a native, drought tolerant landscape design and the use of underground storage of roof water catchment for the irrigation system, eliminating the need for municipal water use. We also filter storm water runoff on site so as not to pollute local waterways.

 water efficiency

Water Efficiency

Buildings are major users of our potable water supply. The goal of the Water Efficiency credit category is to encourage smarter use of water, inside and out. The medical center was engineered and designed to save more than 30% in water use through the use of dual flush toilets and low flow fixtures for sinks and showers.

 emergency and atmosphere

Energy & Atmosphere

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, buildings use 39% of the energy and 74% of the electricity produced each year in the United States.  The Energy & Atmosphere category encourages a wide variety of energy strategies: commissioning; energy use monitoring; efficient design and construction; efficient appliances, systems and lighting; the use of renewable and clean sources of energy, generated on-site or off-site; and other innovative strategies.The MPHC was engineered and designed to perform 24% more efficient than applicable energy codes. Energy efficiency measures include improved thermal envelope, high efficiency windows, reduced lighting power density, occupancy sensors, high efficiency HVAC and a white roof that reflects heat. The MPHC purchases 35% of its energy from off site renewable energy sources.

 materials and resources

Materials & Resources

During both the construction and operations phases, buildings generate a lot of waste and use a lot of materials and resources.  This credit category encourages the selection of sustainably grown, harvested, produced and transported products and materials.  It promotes the reduction of waste as well as reuse and recycling, and it takes into account the reduction of waste at a product’s source.During construction, 770 tons of metal, concrete, drywall, masonry, wood and cardboard was diverted from the landfill, recycling more than 85% of total construction waste. In addition, the project utilized building materials with recycled content, building materials sourced within a 500 mile radius of the project, and used wood from suppliers who have received Forest Stewardship Certification.

 indoor environment

Indoor Environmental Quality

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that Americans spend about 90% of their day indoors, where the air quality can be significantly worse than outside. The Indoor Environmental Quality credit category promotes strategies that can improve indoor air as well as providing access to natural daylight and views and improving acoustics.The project used finish materials such as paints, coatings, adhesives, sealants and carpet systems all meeting strict VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) limits. No urea-formaldehyde used in indoor composite wood and agrifiber materials. In addition, MPHC has a Green Housekeeping program reducing the use of toxic chemicals.

 innovation

Innovation in Design

The Innovation in Design credit category provides bonus points for projects that use new and innovative technologies and strategies to improve a building’s performance well beyond what is required by other LEEDcredits or in green building considerations that are not specifically addressed elsewhere in LEED.  This credit category also rewards projects for including a LEED Accredited Professional on the team to ensure a holistic, integrated approach to the design and construction phase.A highlight of the project is the healing garden designed to bring beauty and serenity to the cancer center. Healing gardens are a vital aspect of the care environment. The garden is accessible through the campus and the facility, providing a place of respite for users and a sanctuary for patients and their families.

How to achieve certification

LEED points are awarded on a point scale, and credits are weighted to reflect their potential environmental impacts.  A project must satisfy all prerequisites and earn a minimum number of points to be certified.

What does LEED mean for MPHC tenants and visitors?

  • Parking – For those who drive energy efficient vehicles, specially designated spaces are located near the front entrance of the building.
  • Energy consumption – High-efficiency lighting fixtures, daylight controls, and occupancy sensors reduce lighting and HVAC energy.  In addition, the use of space heaters and fans is prohibited in all suites in order to ensure optimal HVAC performance.
  • Air quality – Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the campus of the MPHC.
  • Recycling – Containers are conveniently located within each suite and public areas to encourage recycling and raise awareness of waste reduction efforts.
  • Housekeeping services – A sustainable purchasing program ensures all cleaning products and materials meet “green” standards for building maintenance.