Oakland, California (EastBayDaily) — Oakland Zoo is proud to announce the achievement of LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification of its Veterinary Hospital by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI). LEED is the nation's preeminent program for design, construction, and operation of high performance green buildings. This Bay Area facility is the first veterinary hospital in California to become LEED Gold and is the second veterinary institution with Gold status on the West Coast. Less than ten AZA accredited zoos and aquariums in the United States have been awarded LEED Gold or higher certifications.
By using less energy and water, LEED certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers, and the larger community.
"Oakland Zoo's Veterinary Hospital's LEED Gold certification demonstrates tremendous green building leadership," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council. "The urgency of USGBC's mission has challenged the industry to move faster and reach further than ever before, and this Veterinary Hospital serves as a prime example with just how much we can accomplish."
This prestigious certification was based on a number of green design and construction features that positively impact the project itself and the broader community. These features include: Siting of the building Maximizing daylight in occupied areas Installation of sustainable icynene castor oil insulation "Cool Roof" materials that reflect heat and minimize thermal transfer Photovoltaics on the roof to provide more than 60% of the building's power Utilization of sustainably harvested Forest Stewardship Council certified wood â¢I n-slab radiant heating Concrete masonry unit pavers on the entry plaza – to allow water to penetrate, thereby reducing water runoff
Implementing photovoltaics has generated more than 100,000 kWh since it went live in February 2013 and nearly 70,000 kWh in calendar year 2013. Based on EPA estimates, this equates to completely offsetting the energy use of seventeen homes per year.
"Achieving LEED Gold confirms Oakland Zoo's ongoing environmental leadership and demonstrates our immediate and positive impact on our planet's resources," said Nik Dehejia, Chief Financial Officer at Oakland Zoo. "The building of the Veterinary Hospital addresses critical environmental challenges, creates opportunities for 'green' jobs, environmental education for thousands of children and families who visit the Zoo, and reduces our long-term operating costs. We are proud to demonstrate our commitment to the green building movement."
The LEED Gold distinction is greatly attributed to Oakland Zoo's partnerships with Noll & Tam Architects, Swinerton Management & Consulting, Solar Technologies, and Alten Construction. The Zoo is grateful to SunPower Corporation for the significant donation of 154 solar panels that line the veterinary facility's roof.
ABOUT OAKLAND ZOO's VETERINARY HOSPITAL: The state-of-the art 17,000-square-foot Veterinary Hospital opened on October 11, 2012 and was specifically designed to accommodate a variety of zoo animals and their specific needs – from sun and humidity-loving reptiles, to tiny birds, to cold-adapted grizzly bears. The new facility replaced a fifty-one year old clinic, which measured 1,200 square feet in size and was designed for a much smaller collection of animals. This new facility has allowed Oakland Zoo to move into a new generation of animal care and conservation, utilizing best practices in wildlife management. With animal care, comfort, and treatment as the top priority, the building was created to include the latest technology and equipment to treat nearly 660 animals (96 species), small and large animal exam and surgery rooms, a radiology suite, an animal care wing – containing multiple holding areas, an aquatic animal area with an indoor pool, climate controlled rooms for creatures requiring particular temperatures and humidity, a quarantine area, a diagnostic lab, digital radiographic imaging, and endoscopy equipment. Not only has the facility been a fantastic place to treat animals, it has also become a place to train future veterinarians.
ABOUT OAKLAND ZOO: The Bay Area’s award-winning Oakland Zoo is home to more than 660 native and exotic animals. The Zoo offers many educational programs and kid’s activities perfect for science field trips, family day trips and exciting birthday parties. Nestled in the Oakland Hills, in 525-acre Knowland Park, the Zoo is located at 9777 Golf Links Road, off Highway 580. The East Bay Zoological Society (Oakland Zoo) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization supported in part by members, contributions, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Parks. For more information, please visit our website at http://www.oaklandzoo.org.
ABOUT U.S. GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL: The Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 80 local affiliates, more than 18,000 member companies and organizations, and more than 167,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion to the U.S gross domestic product from 2009 – 2013. USGBC leads an unlikely diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, and teachers and students. Buildings in the United States are responsible for 39% of CO2 emissions, 40% of energy consumption, 13% water consumption and 15% of GDP per year, making green building a source of significant economic and environmental opportunity. Greater building efficiency can meet 85% of future U.S. demand for energy, and a national commitment to green building has the potential to generate 2.5 million American jobs.
LEED: The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. Over 100,000 projects are currently participating in the LEED rating systems, comprising over 8 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 114 countries. By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community. USGBC was co-founded by current President and CEO Rick Fedrizzi, who spent 25 years as a Fortune 500 executive. Under his 15-year leadership, the organization has become the preeminent green building, membership, policy, standards, influential, educational and research organization in the nation. For more information, visit http://www.usgbc.org.