Sunday, July 30, 2006

St. Louis #7 for LEED-Certified Buildings

Apologies for being a bit out of pocket this weekend -- fighting a minor summer cold, and it's just enough to keep me sleeping more than usual...

I've touched on the growth of green building in St. Louis on a number of occasions, but was pleasantly surprised to find out that we're a "top 10" city in terms of the number of projects. According to an article in this morning's St. Louis Post-Dispatch, we rank #7 in the country in terms of the number of LEED-certified buildings:
With nine LEED-certified buildings, St. Louis ranks seventh on the list, according to the [US Green Building] council's June survey. In 2004 there was one certified building in the St. Louis area. ...

In July there were 43 registered or certified projects in the St. Louis area. By the end of 2007 the St. Louis area is likely to have 60 registered or certified buildings, Jain said. By comparison, Chicago tops the list of registered projects with 92. It has 10 certified buildings, according to the June survey.

"Chicago and St. Louis are unique for the Midwest. ... They seem to be following the trend closely tracking with the East and West coasts," said Brendan Owens, director of LEED Design and Construction at the U.S. Green Building Council, based in Washington.
Turns out we're not such bumpkins here in the Midwest after all! Seriously, though, this is great news, because, unfortunately, it's hard to find evidence of "green thinking" here in the Gateway City. The fact that Chicago has created the goal to become the greenest city in the US has to help, though -- we do think of ourselves as quite different from coastal cities (and, of course, we are), but the Windy City's doing an admirable job of showing that sustainability isn't outside the scope of "midwestern values." Now, St. Louis is making it's mark, and I'm proud of that -- let's hope this generates more motivation to make ourselves a leader in other green technologies and practices. If you're interested, here are the top ten cities according to the USGBC:
  • Seattle 20
  • Portland, OR 16
  • Pittsburgh 13
  • Atlanta 13
  • Grand Rapids, MI 11
  • Chicago 10
  • St. Louis 9
  • Washington 6
  • Austin, TX 6
  • San Francisco 6
Source: US Green Building Council, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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