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Illinois Leading Nation in Green Building

Today, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) announced that Illinois continues to lead the nation in LEED green building. The 2016 national rankings placed Illinois third on the annual list, making Illinois one of only two states to remain in the top ten since the list began in 2010. The annual list highlights states throughout the country that made significant strides in sustainable building design, construction and transformation over the past year.

“Illinois has a strong history of and appreciation for architectural innovation. It is evident as you walk down the streets of Chicago, drive by the buildings in Springfield or tour one of our many world-class education institutions,” said Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity Acting Director Sean McCarthy. “Green builders employ the most advanced technology possible to create a sustainable future, while also driving our economy and making our state a better place to live, work and invest.”

“I am proud to see Illinois continue to emphasize state-of-the-art practices to yet again earn the title of a top LEED builder,” said Intersect Illinois Chairman and CEO Jim Schultz. “Our focus on innovation and the future of our state continues to attract companies and jobs from across the globe. We will continue to employ our best efforts to support green technology and help make Illinois the state of innovation.”

Illinois had a total of 151 LEED-certified projects representing 2.82 gross square feet of certified space per resident in 2016. According to USGBC’s 2015 Green Building Economic Impact Study, LEED construction is projected to support 413,000 total jobs in Illinois and have a total impact on GDP of $36.13 billion from 2015-2018.

A few notable projects that certified in Illinois in 2016 include:

  • Motor Row Brewing in Chicago; LEED Silver
  • Chiaravalle Montessori School North Wing in Evanston; LEED Platinum
  • Presence Center for Advanced Care in Chicago; LEED Gold

Now in its seventh year, the ranking assesses the total square feet of LEED-certified space per resident based on U.S. Census data and includes commercial and institutional green building projects certified during 2016.

The LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction, maintenance and operations of green buildings. More than 59,000 commercial, neighborhood and residential projects are currently LEED certified, comprising more than 6 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 164 countries and territories globally.