Front Porch Blog

Watauga High School to be First Green “LEED certified” in NC

Thanks to some hard-work of many local activists and elected officials, Boone’s new “Watauga High School” will be the first in North Carolina to earn LEED certification.

Commission chairman Jim Deal said it would be collaborative project, with ASU instructors using the project as a demonstration model. Participating students would earn credit and gain experience in “green” building, engineering and certifying procedures.

LEED was developed in 1998 by the U.S. Green Building Council, setting a series of ratings that must be met to achieve the certification. While credentials for commercial buildings and homes are already in use, the “LEED for Schools” designation was formally adopted in April, which would likely make the new high school the first in North Carolina to be built according to those guidelines.

The county could pursue a “Silver LEEDS” certification, one of four different levels granted through achieving performance benchmarks. Among the green techniques discussed for the school are the strategic placement of windows for daytime interior lighting, capturing and reusing rainwater, and a geothermal collection system that would use underground pipes for heating and cooling.

Commissioner Mary Moretz said while the county would face additional costs up front, the techniques would result in long-term savings, particularly given the collaboration with ASU.

I’m proud! Congratulations to all our friends in Watauga County.





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