The school became LEED Platinum-certified in July, making it the only elementary school in the state with this certification. LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program created by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).
Cheryl Carnahan, Northside’s principal, said in a statement that reaching the highest level of LEED certification is an honor.
Steve Nally, a construction administrator for Moseley Architects, said the architecture firm kept the LEED standards in mind when designing the school.
“From what type of glazing you are going to have on the building, insulation level, building orientation on the site, storm water management,” Nally said. “All the things that the USGBC looks at in its certification are things that you need to keep in mind in the design process.”
Some of the green features at Northside include a rooftop garden, an underground rainwater cistern that supplies water to the toilets, a cooling tower and skylights.
“Our community is heavily invested in this school, and we find it very satisfying to earn such a visible recognition of the planning and foresight that went into this state-of-the-art learning facility,” Carnahan said.
Emily Scofield, executive director of the North Carolina branch of the Green Building Council, said buildings are rated on a scorecard.
“They decide which components they are going to include in their building, and each of those components is weighted with a point value,” Scofield said. “At the end of your project, depending on how many points you have accumulated, that correlates to your rating.”