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USGBC Names Top 10 Green Building States

Thursday, January 28, 2016

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Illinois, Maryland and Massachusetts ranked 1-2-3 in the U.S. Green Building Council’s latest list of top states for commercial and institutional green buildings per capita.

Now in its sixth year, the annual list highlights the top 10 U.S. states making strides in terms of LEED-certified sustainable building projects.

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Illinois retained its top position on the USGBC's Top 10 States for the third consecutive year, with 161 LEED certifications representing 3.43 square feet of certified space per resident.

In total, the top 10 states certified 1,633 commercial and institutional projects last year, representing 274.9 million square feet. (Worldwide, 4,837 projects were certified in 2015, representing 818.9 million square feet.)

The most popular LEED certification among the highest ranking states was Building Operations and Maintenance, representing 49 percent of the total square footage certified. LEED for Building Design and Construction was the second most popular in the top 10, representing 47 percent.

Top Players

Illinois retained its top position for the third consecutive year, with 161 LEED certifications representing 3.43 square feet of certified space per resident. Illinois, along with Colorado, are the only two states that have made the list every year.

Maryland ranked second in the nation for green building, reaffirming the mid-Atlantic region, which includes Washington D.C., as the “epicenter of green building,” according to the USGBC.

Maryland boasts 127 certified projects and 3.06 square feet of certified space per resident.

While D.C. is not included in the top states due to its federal territory status, the district is notable as it continues to lead the nation with a whopping 19.3 square feet of LEED space per resident.

Massachusetts came in third on the list, with 113 certified projects covering 3.03 square feet per resident.

The USGBC notes that Utah is a newcomer on the 2015 ranking, “illustrating how LEED is expanding beyond states with densely populated urban areas.” Further, the organization adds that Texas, Washington and Nevada have again made the list after a three-year hiatus.

The full rankings follow:

2015 Top 10 State for LEED

Rank

State

Gross Square Footage (gsf)

Per Capita Certified GSF

Total No. Projects

1

IL*

43,979,595

3.43

161

2

MD*

17,659,881

3.06

127

3

MA*

19,850,624

3.03

112

4

WA

17,450,321

2.60

101

5

CO*

12,218,992

2.43

95

6

NV

6,534,960

2.42

30

7

CA*

87,358,563

2.34

618

8

TX

52,445,321

2.09

237

9

VA*

13,005,968

1.63

121

10

UT

4,494,301

1.63

31

**

DC

11,612,237

19.30

84

*Included in 2014 Top 10 States for LEED list

**Washington, D.C. is not ranked because it is a federal district, not a state

Notable Projects

The USGBC also listed the following notable 2015 projects.

  • Illinois: Virgin Hotel Chicago; LEED Gold
  • Maryland: Holy Cross Hospital in Germantown; LEED Gold
  • Massachusetts: New Douglas Elementary School in Douglas; LEED Silver
  • Washington: University of Washington Husky Stadium, the largest stadium, college or professional, in the Pacific Northwest, in Seattle; LEED Silver
  • Colorado: North Colorado Springs Readiness Center, home to the Colorado National Guard; LEED Platinum
  • Nevada: Clark County Wetlands Park Nature Center in Las Vegas; LEED Gold
  • California: Los Angeles Convention Center Recertification; LEED Gold
  • Texas: The Treehouse at Memorial City, part eco office and part clubhouse in Houston; LEED Platinum
  • Virginia: Chesapeake Bay Foundation Virginia Environmental Center in Virginia Beach; LEED Platinum
  • Utah: U.S. District Courthouse in Salt Lake City; LEED Gold

   

Tagged categories: Certifications and standards; Green building; LEED; U.S. Green Building Council

Comment from Sarah Geary, (1/28/2016, 8:05 AM)

Do we think the rate at which residents are fleeing the state of Illinois has somehow skewed this ranking system?


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