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LEED for business, but not city


Sep 14, 2008


Less than a week after approving incentives for greening industrial buildings, the city is poised to abandon a commitment the renovated city hall will meet those same standards. The ‘do as I say not as I do’ recommendation will be presented to the public works committee tomorrow.

The report from the city hall renovations steering committee recommends “that construction of a green roof for Hamilton City Hall and LEED Silver Certification not proceed”.

Last week city council unanimously approved the establishment of a subsidy program that would cover half the costs of making new or renovated industrial buildings meet LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards. The adopted report, titled “Hamilton LEEDing the Way” argued that LEED buildings reduce energy and water consumption, generate less waste, and provide a healthier indoor environment.

“The LEED certification process is an established method for measuring a building’s ‘greenness’,” noted the staff report supporting the subsidy program. “Building to a LEED standard is increasingly seen as good business and good for the community as a whole.”

The renovations committee recommendation to abandon the quest for LEED certification of city hall was taken in early August at the same time it was decided to use concrete instead of marble for the building cladding, and to utilize aluminium for window trimming instead of stainless steel.

The renovations committee is chaired by Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson, and also includes Chad Collins, Maria Pearson and Terry Whitehead, but Pearson was absent from the August 11 meeting that made the decision.

City Hall is one of two city-owned buildings currently listed on the website of the Canadian Green Building Council for pending LEED certification.

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