Three County Buildings Get Green Certification
May 15, 2009
Three county buildings recently were certified as green buildings: Foundations (formerly known as the Girls Probation House); Crosspointe Fire Station; and the Burke Centre Library.
Foundations received a Green Globe certification from the Green Building Initiative. The Crosspointe Fire Station and Burke Centre Library both received LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The station achieved a gold level certification, the second highest level, and the library attained a silver level certification.
Burke Centre Library is the only LEED Silver-certified library in Virginia while Crosspointe ranks among only six LEED Gold-certified buildings in the nation.
These buildings all contain green materials, and they were designed to reduce energy and water consumption. Recycled materials are incorporated into the buildings or interior décor.
- Foundations uses recycled materials in its steel framing, ceiling panels and carpet tiles, and 8 percent of the building materials contain recycled content.
- Crosspointe features cork and bamboo flooring, and 56 percent of the building materials contain recycled content.
- Burke Centre Library uses carpet, ceiling tile, ceramic tile and furnishings that contain 48 percent or more recycled content.
Because of their energy-efficient design, these buildings also will reduce energy costs compared to similar facilities with traditional construction:
- Foundations reduces energy usage by 17 percent, resulting in a savings of approximately $4,800 per year.
- Crosspointe slashes energy usage by 25 percent, resulting in a savings of almost $11,000 per year.
- Burke Centre Library cuts energy usage by 29 percent, resulting in a savings of approximately $9,800 per year.
These savings are achieved in part by maximizing natural light; each building allows daylight into 90 percent or more of its habitable spaces. Natural light helps curtail electric and cooling costs because artificial lights consume energy and generate heat. Artificial lighting accounts for as much as 40-50 percent of the energy consumption in many commercial and institutional buildings, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
The three buildings also were built with water conservation in mind. Low-flow toilets and other efficient plumbing fixtures are used to reduce water usage. Compared to conventionally designed facilities of the same kind, these building reduce water consumption by:
- 28 percent at Foundations.
- 40 percent at Crosspointe.
- 41 percent at Burke Centre Library.
Last year, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors adopted a green building policy for county facilities. The policy requires that buildings with more than 10,000 square feet be constructed to meet minimum green building standards, if not exceed them. The policy applies to the construction of new county buildings and renovations or additions to existing county buildings. However, the policy does not apply to county-constructed single family homes, town houses and low-rise multi-family buildings. Instead, the Energy Star rating system will be used for these types of buildings.
For more information, contact the Office of Public Affairs at 703-324-3187, TTY 711.
Contact: Merni Fitzgerald, Director, Office of Public Affairs
703-324-3189, TTY 711, Media Pager: 703-324-NEWS (6397)
To request this information in an alternate format, call 703-324-3187, TTY 711